Talking about salaries is uncomfortable for many hairdressers. Nobody wants to appear rude, ill-mannered or indiscreet. Except, these conversations need to happen to avoid personal or legal difficulties.
This year, industry changes mean keeping updated is particularly important. The Australian Government has been steadily increasing penalty rates for casual workers, which will end at the end of 2023. don't panic just yet. There are a few ways to stay informed.
One of the best financial resources for hairdresser salaries is the Australian Government Hair & Beauty Industry Award. There is plenty of information inside, including requirements for pay rates and payslips. let's unpack the information together.
Average Hairdresser Salaries In Australia
Google usually holds all the answers, but quick searches about hairdresser salaries in Australia only create confusion. Even the top websites disagree about the topic.
The job specialist Talent lists the median hairdresser salary as $58,500. However, they claim an entry-level salary is $55,000, and the most experienced workers earn $94,809. Meanwhile, Seek states the average salary is $30,000 to $50,000.So, what website is correct?
The answer is complicated because there is no one-size-fits-all salary. The amount depends on multiple factors, including experience and the number of hours. don't get disheartened just yet, because the Hair & Beauty Industry Award will give us clearer insights.
What Is The Australian Government Hair & Beauty Industry Award?
The Hair and Beauty Industry Award outlines the minimum standards for pay in the industry. The document applies to anyone who performs haircutting, hair styling, shampooing, shaving, beard trimming, hair dyeing and more.
The Hair & Beauty Industry Award does not cover the following:
- Hairdressers or cosmetologists in the general retail, theatrical, amusement and entertainment industries.
- Stand-alone self-service spray tanning studios and solariums.
- Artists and employees of tattoo parlours.
Awards can be subject to change, but don't worry about falling behind. Stay updated by subscribing to emails from the Fair Work Ombudsman. These updates cover pay, awards, workplace laws and more. Another useful tool is the Pay And Conditions Tool (PACT). You can calculate base pay, allowances and penalty rates, including overtime. The Fair Work Ombudsman works hard to ensure this calculator incorporates changes as soon as they come into effect. However, always double-check the most recent Hair & Beauty Industry Award.
Full-Time & Part-Time Pay Rates
Thankfully, full-time and part-time are simple. Hourly pay is calculated according to six employee levels. However, rates increase when employees work weekends, overtime, public holidays or rostered day off (RDO). let's start our straightforward explanation.
Hair and beauty employee level 1: Describes employees performing administrative or clerical duties, such as receptionists or salon assistants. The hourly pay rate is $23.38, but the penalty rates are higher.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $31.10.
- Sunday - $46.76.
- Public holiday - $58.45.
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $35.07.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $46.76.
- Working on RDO -$46.76.
Hair and beauty employee level 2: Applies to several types of employees, such as make-up artists with Certificate II In Make-up Services, nail technicians with Certificate II In Nail Technology, unqualified beauticians, and unqualified cosmetologists. The base rate is $23.92, but the exceptions are outlined below.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $31.81.
- Sunday - $47.84.
- Public holiday - $59.80.
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $35.88.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $47.84.
- Working on RDO - $47.84.
Hair and beauty employee level 3: Includes beauticians with Certificate III In Beauty Services and hairdressers with Certificate III In Hairdressing. The base rate is $24.76.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $32.93.
- Sunday - $49.52.
- Public holiday - $61.90.
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $37.14.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $49.52.
- Working on RDO - $49.52.
Hair and beauty employee level 4: Suitable for beauty therapists who hold Certificate IV In Beauty Therapy. Without penalty rates, hourly pay is $25.22.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $33.54.
- Sunday - $50.44.
- Public holiday - $63.05.
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $37.83.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $50.44.
- Working on RDO - $50.44.
Hair and beauty employee level 5: Applies to hairdressers holding Certificate IV. It also applies to trichologists who are hairdressers with a Certificate IV in Trichology. The base pay rate is $25.97 per hour.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $34.54.
- Sunday - $51.94.
- Public holiday - $64.93.
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $38.96.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $51.94.
- Working on RDO - $51.94.
Hair and beauty employee level 6: These types of employees include anyone with a Diploma in Beauty Therapy. The hourly rate is the highest: $26.90.
- Saturday between 7 am and 6 pm - $35.78.
- Sunday - $53.80.
- Public holiday - $67.25
- Overtime for the first 3 hours - $40.35.
- Overtime after 3 hours - $53.80.
- Working on RDO - $53.80.
Penalty Rate Changes For Casuals
From January 2022, penalty rates for weekend work performed by casuals will increase. The old Hair & Beauty Industry Award did not include 25% casual loading in weekend penalty rates, but the new version will correct the issue. There will be five stages of change and the final one will occur by 31 December 2023. Afterwards, casual employees working ordinary hours on Saturdays will be entitled to a 158% penalty rate, including their casual loading. Casual employees working ordinary or overtime hours on a Sunday will be paid penalty rates of 225%, including casual loading.
This is great news for hair and beauty employees - but keeping updated can be intimidating. Find the revised penalty rates in the latest Hair & Beauty Industry Award, and you can subscribe to emails from the Fair Work Ombudsman to learn about future changes.
Casual Pay Rates
Governmental changes mean casual rates are more complicated than part-time or full-time. However, you will be pleased to hear the base rate is unchanged, and we have listed the amounts below.
- Hair and beauty employee level 1: $29.23
- Hair and beauty employee level 2: $29.90
- Hair and beauty employee level 3: $30.95
- Hair and beauty employee level 4: $31.53
- Hair and beauty employee level 5: $32.46
- Hair and beauty employee level 6: $33.63
Hairdressing Trainee or Graduate Pay Rates
Here is the most complicated category. Hairdressing trainees and graduates are paid depending on many factors, including full-time, part-time or casual hours. Pay will also vary based on age, when pre-apprenticeship started and whether year 12 of high school was completed. Visit the Hair & Beauty Industry Award and find the appropriate category for hourly rates.
Not only must payments be accurate, but payslips must be presented correctly. Failure to follow requirements can mean large fines for employers.
Payslips can be sent either electronically or in hard copy form, and these should be given to employees within one working day of payday. Plus, certain information must be included, particularly the amounts (both gross and net), the pay period and any penalty rates.
Find the full list of payslip requirements on this page.
The Verdict About Hairdresser Salaries: Were Your Payslips Correct?
Although discussing hairdresser salaries can be uncomfortable (and confusing), we hope this article has given you insight. From annual to hourly rates, there has been plenty to think about. Even payslip requirements were reviewed. The main takeaway from this article was to check your financials and subscribe to Fair Work emails for updates. There will be many changes to casual penalty rates throughout the year, and it is important to stay informed. Let us know what new information you learned in the comments below.