Setting up your salon what you need to know

If you want to set up a hairdressing salon, beauty salon, or a barber shop, there are procedures and hygiene requirements you need to follow. All hairdressers premises need to be registered by the local authority under the Health (Registration of premises) Regulations 1966. You need to display the Certificate of Registration in a public part of the premises.

Before you sign a lease on new premises, you need to check with a planning officer if it is appropriate for you to operate a hairdressing salon, beauty salon, or a barber shop at the address. Some areas of the city are zoned to prevent commercial activity. Planners will also advise you about operating requirements in the area, including parking and lighting.

Building consent:  

You will need this if you are building a new premises or altering an existing building. If you intend to install toilets, sinks or washbasins you will need building consent for the plumbing and drainage work. Consult your local council building help desk before you: Make building and plumbing alterations, make partitions, install large appliances or shelving, remove doors, windows, ventilation apply spray coat textures. 

This will ensure that you do not breach the Health (Hairdressers) Regulations 1980 or building regulations, and decrease the chances of needing to do remedial work later on. You will need to make yourself familiar with the ‘Health (Hairdressers) Regulations 1980’. This sets out the structural criteria for a hairdressing salon or barber shop, the conduct and practices of hairdressers.

Getting a Certificate of Registration: 

Download and complete the Registration of hairdressers shop – application form (PDF 273KB), send your completed registration form and fee to your local council. Fees may vary from region to region, Auckland City Council has standardised all former fees for hairdressers registrations to one single annual registration fee of $230 for the region. These fees apply from 1 July 2014.

Taking over an existing premises:

If you take over an existing premises, you must notify the council and download and complete the Registration of hairdressers shop – application form (PDF 273KB). If there is a current registration, you can apply to transfer this registration into your name. Applications must be received within 14 days of you taking over the business. After this period, the registration lapses and can not be transferred.  If there is no current registration, you will need to apply for a new certificate of registration.

Hygiene requirements:

Wash hand basins and sinks; You need a minimum of:

  • A shampoo sink
  • A cleansing sink for cleaning equipment
  • A wash hand basin.

Use sinks for their designated purpose only.

The wash hand basin must be within 6m of all hair cutting chairs. It must have hot and cold running water, soap (anti-bacterial), nail brush, a towel or paper towels.


  • You must use a laundered towel or single use paper towel for each customer.
  • Store used towels in a clean covered container, such as a laundry basket.
  • Store freshly laundered towels in a clean, dust free location. 
  • Do not launder in the service area of the shop.


All tools and equipment, such as scissors and combs, should not be used on customers unless they have been cleaned in the following manner:

  • Removed all hair.
  • Wash in warm water using a suitable detergent.
  • Dry with clean cloth or towel.
  • Soak for 30 minutes in a suitable disinfectant (ensure that the disinfectant covers the whole comb and is used according to manufacturer’s directions).
  • Rinse in clean water and dry.
  • Store in a manner that prevents recontamination.
  • Clean razors and clippers or any other instruments with non-detachable parts by: thoroughly brushing teeth or blades with a clean brush to remove hair (used exclusively for this purpose) wiping the blades with clean cotton wool or cloth saturated with disinfecting fluid.
  • Immerse shaving brushes, mugs and sponges in boiling water for five minutes after each use.
  • Ultra violet cabinets are satisfactory for storage but not effective for disinfection.
  • Use disposable blades wherever possible.