Cyber Hair Studio

Cyber Hair Studio

Cyber Hair Studio OH&S Manual

Cyber Hair Studio

Occupational Health and Safety Manual

Table of Contents

Introduction / 3
Health and Safety Legislation / 4
The Workplace Health and Safety Act / 4
Laws / 5
Employer’s Responsibilities / 9
Employee’s Responsibilities / 10
Manufacturer’s Responsibilities / 11
Legal Requirements / 12
Hazardous Substances / 13
Hairdressing/Beauty Chemicals / 14
Health Effects / 15
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) / 16
Hair Colouring Products / 17
Other Health Issues / 20
Prevention / 22
Skin Tests / 23
General Rules for Chemical Safety / 24
First Aid Treatment for Hazardous Substances / 24
Infection in the Workplace / 25
Disinfection and Infection Control / 26
Cleaning and Disinfecting Scissors, Combs and Brushes / 27
Cleaning and Disinfecting Electrical Tools / 27
Body Fluids Risks / 28
Waste Management / 29
A Safe Working Environment / 30
Electrical Safety / 31
Electrical Safety Tips / 32
Correct Use of Electrical Appliances / 35
Check and Maintain Tools and Equipment / 36
Risks and Hazards / 37
Risk assessment / 38
Strain and Fatigue / 39
Common Fatigue and Posture Problems / 39
Prevention Measures / 40
Control Measures / 41
Manual Handling / 41
Emergency Procedures / 42
Fire Procedures / 42
Fire Extinguishers / 43
Fire Emergency Procedures / 45
Using a Fire Extinguisher / 6
First Aid in the Workplace / 47
Common Workplace Injuries / 48
First Aid Kit / 50
Recording Accidents and Incidents / 51
Contacting Emergency Services / 52
Maintaining Occupational Health and Safety / 53


As a high quality business, Cyber Hair Studio, provides safe and hygienic services to our clients in a clean and friendly environment.

To let our standards slip would be to risk the safety and health of our clients and us, the hairdressers who work here.

In addition, there are laws and codes of practice, which help to ensure that our industry remains safe. We are obliged to comply with these laws.

Therefore it is essential that we all understand and follow the health and safety procedures outlined in this manual.

Please notify Nic Papadopoulos if you do not understand anything contained in this manual or have any questions.

Health and Safety Legislation

The Workplace Health and Safety Act

Like any other workplace, Cyber Hair Studio is required by law (Acts of Parliament) to follow health and safety conditions. This is to make sure that the salon is a safe place to work in for you and your clients.

The purpose of this Act is to:

  • Secure the health, safety and welfare of all people at work
  • Protect persons at work from risks to their health and safety
  • Assist in securing a safe and healthy work environment


It is the responsibility of all people who work in the hairdressing/beauty industry to take steps to ensure health and safety. This includes the employer, employees, manufacturers and suppliers of products and equipment.

Health and Safety Laws are to protect people from occupational illness and disease and they apply to every workplace.

There are three parts to the Health and Safety legislation

  1. Acts, particularly the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1989 (The Act)
  2. The regulations made under the Act
  3. Approved Codes of Practice


Acts are government laws, which set out the general duties that those in the workforce must follow to maintain safe and healthy workplaces.

  • Occupational Health and Safety Act (1985)
  • Dangerous good Act (1985)
  • Equipment (Public safety Act)(1994)


Regulations set compulsory minimum requirements for specific hazards and work practices in relation to work health and safety.

The regulations that apply to the hairdressing industry are:

  • Occupational Health and Safety: Hazardous Substances 1999
  • Notification of Accidents System
  • Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996

Codes of Practice

These provide practical guidance and prevention strategies of how best to meet the regulation and requirements of the act.

There are many Codes of Practice that apply to the hairdressing industry. These include:

  • Workplace Hazardous Substances (No24, June2000)
    Helps manufacturers/suppliers and employers use these substances to meet the requirements of the H&S (Hazardous Substances) Regulation 1999 to protect people at work. This includes preparation of Material Safety Data Sheets and labelling of workplace substances.
  • Workplaces (No.3, June 1988)-
    Provides practical guidance to employers in meeting certain minimum standards, facilities/amenities in workplaces in prohibiting certain activities in workplaces, and in maintaining the workplaces in a safe healthy condition.
  • First aid, Workplace Amenities and Personal Protection (No18, June, 1995)
    Provides guidance to appropriate first aid facilities in the work place
  • Manual handling (Occupational Overuse Syndrome) (No 15,Jan.1992)
    Provides guidance on ways to reduce risks
  • Confined Spaces (No 20, March 1997)
    Provides guidance on risk control

Workcover administers these Acts and Regulations, which provides the legal basis for both workplace health and safety and workers compensation.

Printed copies of the Codes of Practice are available from Victorian WorkCover Authority

Tel (03) 9641 1555

You can also use the following websites to find information regarding Codes of Practice.

/ Vic - Workcover
/ Tas – Workplace Standards
/ NSW - Workcover
/ Qld - Workplace Health and Safety
/ SA - Workcover Corporation
/ WA - Worksafe
/ NT - Work Health and Electrical Safety
/ ACT - Workcover

Employer’s Responsibilities

As your employer, Cyber Hair Studio, is responsible (as far as practicable) to provide and maintain:

  • The health and safety of themselves, their employees, and members of the public.
  • Safe and without risk work systems and plant
  • Plant and substances safe use, handling, storage and transportation
  • Adequate facilities for employees
  • Information, training and supervision for employees
  • Protective clothing and equipment.

For an employee to work safely, employers are required to provide:

  • Information on any known hazards found to be in the workplace, and salon policies for carrying out safe work procedures.
  • Instruction and training in safe work procedures.
  • Supervision in making sure their employees are not exposed to hazards. Regular checks should be carried out to ensure health and safety instructions are being followed.

Employee’s Responsibilities

An employee is responsible to:

  • Perform their duties in a safe and responsible manner.
  • Comply with reasonable instructions from the employer to carry out a work procedure.
  • Wear supplied personal protective equipment as instructed
  • Report hazards and work related injuries to the employer

Manufacturer’s Responsibilities

A manufacturer/supplier is responsible to:

  • Make sure plant or substances are designed/manufactured to be safe and without risks when used properly.
  • Arrange for any necessary testing to ensure plant & substances are safe and without risk.
  • Make sure adequate information is available on use of plant/substances

Legal Requirements

The Workplace health and safety regulations set out the legal requirements that must be observed in the workplace.

These regulations deal with procedures to be undertaken, physical working conditions and specific aspects of industrial and constructional health and safety.

By law, every person in the workplace has a right to be involved in health and safety through discussion and co-operation.

The law provides heavy penalties for employers and employees who try to prevent this process from happening.

Breaches of the Act include fines of up to $120,000, or imprisonment.

The maximum penalty applies if a person is killed or suffers a serious injury.

Hazardous Substances

As a hairdresser, you come into contact with chemicals every day. Chemicals can be classed as “relatively harmless” or “hazardous”.

When used in the workplace these substances may generate vapours, fumes, dust and mist.

How dangerous the substance is will depend on its type, what it is made of, how it enters the body, and how much enters the body.

Hairdressing/Beauty Chemicals

Hairdressing/Beauty chemicals can be dangerous because they might be:

  • Flammable
  • Explosive
  • Chemically reactive with each other
  • Poisonous (toxic)
  • Carcinogenic (cancer producing)

Some chemicals may have more than one of these characteristics.

If these substances are breathed in, absorbed through the skin or swallowed, you may suffer immediate or long-term health effects.

Some hazardous substances used in the hairdressing/beauty workplace are:

  • permanent wave solutions and neutralisers
  • hair dyes
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • hair sprays
  • nail varnishes
  • cleaning agents
  • other solutions

Health Effects

Health effects may happen suddenly, such as itchy skin or eyes, nausea or dizziness.

Or they can happen gradually as with contact dermatitis or cancer. While many people will not be affected, others will be susceptible.

At Cyber Hair Studio, we ensure that there is effective ventilation to control chemical contaminants and odours.

It is important to know which chemical products can affect you and your client.

Examples of common hazardous substances used in the Hairdressing and Beauty industry are listed in APPENDIX 1.

Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)

Manufacturers and suppliers of hair and beauty products are required, (under the Act); to supply you with a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for each hazardous substance supplied.

The MSDS contains information on the hazards and risks associated with a substance. The risk involved with a chemical will depend on the substance strength, its quantity, and the time of exposure, the workplace tasks and other workplace conditions.

An MSDS gives more information than what is on a label including:

  • Identification
  • Health hazard
  • Information
  • Precautions for use
  • Safe handling information.

A reference file of MSDS’s for all chemicals used in the salon is kept where chemicals are stored, mixed or used. To minimise risks, it is important to know what chemicals you are using so you can use them safely.

HAZCHEM means Hazardous Chemicals.

The government has specific regulations for the use and storage of these chemicals.

Booklets are available from Victorian WorkCover Authority

Tel (03) 9641 1555

You can also use the following websites to find relevant information.

/ Vic - Workcover
/ Tas – Workplace Standards
/ NSW - Workcover
/ Qld - Workplace Health and Safety
/ SA - Workcover Corporation
/ WA - Worksafe
/ NT - Work Health and Electrical Safety
/ ACT - Workcover

Hair Colouring Products

Hair colouring chemicals are probably the most dangerous chemicals you use. The long-term effects of these chemicals are continually being researched worldwide. Manufacturers must not only list the dangerous chemicals on labels and packaging, but also provide you with a MSDS.

The dangerous ingredient in colouring products is toluene diamine or phenylene diamine commonly known as “Para”.

For more information, see APPENDIX 2.

There are other ingredients in colouring products that may also cause skin irritations.

For example: perfume.

We are not qualified to know which ingredient may cause harm. However, by law, we are required to do a skin test prior to the hair colour to check if the client is allergic to the whole product.

Allergic reactions may vary from head to head and can happen after years of using the same product.

Reactions can be

  • Minor: slight rash, itching or redness
  • Major: swelling, blisters or severe rashes

Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2)

Peroxide is a chemical mixed with many colouring products. If not used safely it can be a strong skin, eye and respiratory irritant.

Peroxide comes in different strengths:

  • 3% = 10 vol
  • 6% = 20 vol
  • 9% = 30 vol
  • 12% = 40 vol
  • 18% = 60 vol

When using peroxide remember to always:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions (use recommended strength)
  • Keep out of reach of children
  • Store in a cool place

The latest scientific research carried out on the effect and use of permanent colour revealed that it can be absorbed into the bloodstream and body fluids. This can cause bladder, kidney or liver problems. There is a suspicion that they can also cause cancer.

Your client is not exposed to colour chemicals as often as you are. You are the one at risk. Wear gloves for protection.

Other Health Issues

As a hair and beauty operator you should be aware of different health conditions related to your profession. When dealing with hazardous substances you could be at risk from fume inhalation, dermatitis/skin disorders or allergies. By following safe work practices you can largely prevent or minimise these conditions.

Contact Dermatitis

This health condition is most common in hairdressers. It is an inflammation of the skin varying from a mild irritation and redness, to large weeping areas and severe swelling. People react differently to substances; some workers will not be affected.

It can be caused by:

  • Frequent contact with a wide variety of hair products containing recognised irritants and sensitisers.
  • Excessive contact with water, and degreasing agents such as shampoos, which dry out the skin.
  • Contact with hand dryers, which dry out the skin.

Common sensitisers

Common sensitisers are certain chemicals found in hairdressing products, which are known to cause skin irritations. Some of these are:

  • Ammonium thioglycolate, (in permanent wave solutions)
  • Formaldehyde/formalin, (low concentration found in some shampoos as a preservative)
  • Hydrogen peroxide, persulphates (in bleaches)
  • P.phenylendiamine and paratoluenediamines (in tints and some hair colours, also known as p.p.d./p.t.d.)
  • Glycerol monothioglycolate (in acid permanent wave solutions also known as (g.m.t.g.)
  • Thioglycolic acid (in hair straighteners)

So you can see that many of the hairdressing products we use daily have the ability to cause skin problems unless we use them safely.


At Cyber Hair Studio, we recommend the following methods to prevent chemical irritation:

  • Reduce exposure to prolonged contact with water (shampooing)
  • Dry hands thoroughly when possible, particularly around jewellery
  • Wear protective gloves when in contact with irritating chemicals (If you are allergic to rubber gloves, use cotton lined or cotton gloves under the rubber gloves)
  • Wash off residue chemical products from the hands with a mild pH neutral soap
  • Use wet work protective creams or moisturisers (preventative care)
  • Apply treatment creams/hand care creams at the end of the working day

All of these things can help you prevent Contact Dermatitis, however, unfortunately some people will become sensitised to a substance and in severe cases may have to change their profession.

Skin Tests

  1. Thoroughly clean a small patch of skin behind the ear or the inner fold of the elbow with alcohol or eau de cologne.
  2. Mix approximately 1 cap of tint to one cap of peroxide (H2O2)
  3. Apply to the cleaned area with a cotton bud
  4. Allow to dry and leave uncovered and without washing for 24 to 48 hours

If any redness or irritation occurs, the person has a positive reaction to the hair colour:

General Rules for Chemical Safety:

  • Follow safe work practices
  • Wear appropriate safety equipment, gloves etc
  • Keep chemicals in clearly labelled containers
  • Don’t drink, eat, or smoke while working with hazardous substances
  • Don’t keep food or drinks near the substance
  • Wash your hands, face and other exposed areas with soap and water before eating and drinking.
  • Don’t put substances into unwashed containers as a chemical reaction may occur
  • Don’t store incompatible substances together (eg hair spray and peroxide)
  • Wipe up spilt chemical immediately
  • Avoid chemicals coming into contact with the skin
  • Use barrier creams on exposed skin area
  • Wear dust masks when filing acrylic nails for protection
  • Wear safety glasses where there is a chance of chemicals splashing into eyes
  • Don’t wear contact lens in nail technician work areas as it is difficult to clean the eye if splashed with chemicals.
  • Read the MSDS

First Aid Treatment for Hazardous Substances

Every chemical must be treated differently, so always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

Risks associated with a chemical affect the way it should be used and stored. It is important to be aware of the chemicals used in hairdressing products, because if used incorrectly you or your client may be harmed.

Infection in the Workplace

During the course of their work, hairdressers come into contact with, and are exposed to, a wide variety of diseases, some of which are infectious. It is important that you take the necessary steps to ensure the safety of yourself and others in the workplace.

An infectious disease is caused by germs and can be passed on from one person to another by breathing in, contact or eating.

Bacteria, fungi, virus or animal parasites can also cause infections.

Check your client’s scalp for any diseases or disorders. Depending on the problem, some clients can still be attended to, while more serious complaints may need to be referred to a pharmacist or doctor.

Disinfection and Infection Control

As a hairdresser, it is your responsibility to prevent the spread of infection in the salon with careful cleaning and disinfecting procedures.

The Act outlines the sterilisation/disinfection control procedures, which must be carried out to prevent the spread of disease in the salon:

  • Premises must be kept clean and hygienic, and operators must keep themselves and their clothing clean.
  • Hairdressers should use good hygiene practices and standard precautions particularly washing and drying hands before and after contact with a client, before eating, drinking, smoking, and after using a toilet.
  • Before being used on another person all equipment, towels and wraps must be cleaned.
  • Broken skin must be covered with a non-porous waterproof dressing.
  • Never use dirty or broken equipment

Cleaning and Disinfecting Scissors, Combs and Brushes