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One of the first questions we're often asked by salon owners thinking about joining Good Salon Guide is about the rating system and how it works.
Good Salon Guide & Good Beauty Guide

Hair and beauty salons can be awarded one of four possible awards — Registered (R), 3, 4 or 5 Star — and is based on training and qualifications so that when you choose a Good Salon Guide / Good Beauty Guide recognised salon, you can be assured that the stylists or beauty therapists are qualified and/or suitably experienced, giving you confidence in the service they are performing.

Good Salon Guide / Good Beauty Guide recognition means that the salon is at the top of its game in all areas, including staff training and qualifications, an impeccable salon environment, and great customer service and care. So when you visit a Good Salon Guide recognised salon, you can be sure of an all round fabulous experience that will match, and even exceed, your expectations. It's that simple!

Smaller, home based beauty salons can also be awarded a 5 Star home beauty rating. You can still expect highly trained staff, using the best products in lovely surroundings, however the salon is likely to be smaller and have fewer staff.

Good Barbers Guide

Good Barbers Guide was established in 2005 and is part of the hugely successful Good Salon Guide family. It is the only independent guide to quality standards in barbering in the UK, Ireland, Malta and the UAE. The Good Barbers Guide criteria have been developed with the consumer, barber shop owners and the industry. As with all of our criteria, the most important element is the training and qualifications of the staff, the customer service and journey through the salon. Every member has been independently inspected so you know that the award means something and isn't just another sticker in the window or certificate on the wall.

Good Training Guide

Good Training Guide gives those looking to gain qualifications within the hair and beauty industry confidence that they are choosing a centre with qualified trainers and assessors that offer the latest courses that can help them get to the next level in their careers.

Colour Expert

Research has shown that colour clients often look for specialists within colour when deciding to choose a new salon or when remaining loyal.

Colour is one of the most requested services within a salon, and with leading trends focussing on new techniques such as Ombre, Balayage and temporary pastel shades, the requests for fabulous hair colour will not be slowing down anytime soon. Colouring is a skill and technique that must be perfected, especially with the many ‘colour gone wrong’ horror stories that you often hear of, which is why Good Salon Guide recognises Colour Expert salons.

Each Colour Expert salon is inspected to a set of strict criteria, including the requirement for a member of the team to have an advanced colour level qualification such as Wella Master Colour Expert or L'Oreal Colour Specialist, so you know you are visiting a quality salon with staff that has the highest level of colour training. The Good Salon Guide Colour Expert rating helps to find you a salon that you will love and trust when it comes to your colour.

ECO Salon

With sustainability and environmental issues becoming an ever-increasing importance in today’s world, Good Salon Guide offers an ECO Salon recognition to help highlight salons who are at the forefront of ethical and sustainable salon practices and services.

Consumers are more aware than ever of being eco-friendly in their choices, so our ECO Salon award helps to highlight those salons that are leading the way and help those that are just starting their journey. We all need to make changes, however big or small, to help our environment, so choosing a registered ECO Salon by Good Salon Guide can help the public make a sustainable choice when it comes to their beauty needs.

The assessment for salons to be registered as an ECO Salon is incredibly strict and the standards are very high. Salons are assessed on areas such as products that minimise the use of plastic and are refillable, extensions and how they are sourced, the removal of all single use plastic, salon waste and recycling, how their in-salon refreshments are sourced, water reduction and much, much more!

Nail Spa

Good Salon Guide’s Nail Spa recognition gives customers confidence in their choice of salon, knowing that the technician carrying out the service is fully qualified and supervised.

Good Salon Guide Nail Spa recognition means that the salon works to incredibly high standards, is on top of staff training and qualifications, keeps the salon environment clean and hygienic, and offers great customer service and care - allowing clients to relax knowing that their nails are in the safest of hands.

Blow Dry

Good Salon Guide's Blow-dry recognition gives customers confidence that they are choosing a blow-dry bar with qualified and supervised staff, as although the cost is relatively low, it's easy for clients to feel short changed, as they are used to the full service that salons offer.

Extensions Artist

Extensions Artist was created due to several complaints that Good Salon Guide had received from the public regarding salons carrying out extensions services when they were not qualified to do so. Looking into this further, Good Salon Guide discovered that one-day extensions courses can be purchased for cheap via avenues such as voucher discount code websites. It is all too easy for someone to do a quick one day course, buy cheap extensions online and then set-up shop as an extensions stylist.

The criteria for salons to become Extensions Artist under Good Salon Guide are strict – the toughest criteria they have. Evidence of qualifications, experience, the hair used, suppliers and more must be shown before the recognition is awarded. This strict criteria gives the public full confidence in knowing that the salon is fully qualified to carry out extensions services and that the hair used is 100% human and from a reputable company.

Creative Excellence

The Creative Excellence award recognises the best in creativity in hairdressing among our members. All Creative Excellence members have produced stand out and high-quality creative work, as well as working on fashion shoots or as a session stylist. We have always showcased and championed the incredible creative talent of our members via the Good Salon Guide magazine. We have been proud to offer a platform for such work to be seen and now, it is time to officially recognise that talent through the Creative Excellence award.

Black Hair Excellence

Black Hair Excellence recognition gives clients ease and confidence when it comes to finding a salon that specialises and are competent in black, afro, and natural hair textures.

The criteria for Black Hair Excellence are strict, as it is important for clients to know that their chosen salon is a true expert in the field of black and natural hair. Evidence of qualifications, training, and the length of time they have been working with black hair must be provided before the recognition is awarded.


Good Salon Guide’s Freelance recognition was created to help consumers make sure that their freelance stylist is fully qualified and insured to carry out the services that they offer.

Freelance recognition means that the stylist is more than qualified in all areas that they operate in – be it hair or beauty – and that they take great pride and care with their customer service. So, when you choose a Good Salon Guide Freelance you can be assured that you are in safe hands!


Being diagnosed with a hair condition can be stressful enough for the individual, and so the last thing they want to think about is whether the trichologist that they are visiting is a true professional. Good Salon Guide’s Trichology recognition can assure consumers that the trichologist or centre that they are visiting is more than qualified to help them - adapting a holistic approach to their treatment, ensuring to consider many different factors, such as lifestyle, diet, and wellbeing, as well as the signs and symptoms present.


With the rise in aesthetic treatments – especially injectables like fillers and Botox – there has also been a simultaneous rise in the number of unlicensed practitioners. An unlicensed practitioner can not only cause unsatisfactory results, but also dangerous ones too!

There are many risks associated with non-surgical aesthetic procedures, but it is more dangerous, particularly in the UK, where anyone can perform unsafe cosmetic treatments that impose life-threatening danger. In the UK, cosmetic procedures like Botox, chemical peels, and laser hair removal can be performed legally by anyone, regardless of medical experience and training.

Good Salon Guide’s Aesthetics recognition helps to take the stress and worry out of the client’s hands when it comes to finding a fully qualified practitioner. We make sure that every salon with this recognition has shown proof of qualifications, certification, and registration with the correct authorising bodies.


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