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Question What does "junior hairdresser" actually mean?! - 09-03-10, 11:29 AM

Sorry if this question has already been answered elsewhere but I couldn't seem to find an answer using the search bar! (Am new to the site)

I finished my NVQ level 2 last february and have since then considered myself a "junior" as I have minimal experience (about 6 months) and minimal confidence (slim to none!)

I wrote letters to several salons in my local area and posted them along with CVs when I lost the weekend job I had in a salon during my college training last August. I had very few replies, most saying they had no jobs at the moment but would contact me if anything came up.

The one positive response i did get was from a salon offering a rent-a-chair position where i take 50% of whatever money i earn. I was told at the time that the salon was busy and they were desperate for someone to help out with the situation. I took the job as i was desperate but I now realise that it was a lie and take home a maximum of 60 a week, apart from one occasion when i earned myself 130 in a week leading up to christmas. I am very unhappy working there. I don't want to slag off the salon owners too much as I am aware it could get me in alot of trouble but they are not hairdressers themselves and seem to have very little clue on running a business and how to treat their employees.

I recieved a phone call this morning from one of the salons i wrote to saying they had a junior position available, but when I told her my age (22, my date of birth is on my CV) the lady told me she couldnt offer me an interview as she was "looking for a school leaver to fill a junior position". Are salons allowed to refuse me a job because of my age? I had always assumed i would be turned away from jobs because of inexperience not my age!

Does anyone have any suggestions as to what my next move should be? I am in a desperate situation, i hate getting up to go in to work every day and am seriously considering giving up on the idea of hairdressing. Any advice you could offer me would be so greatly appreciated!!

x
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09-03-10, 11:55 AM

hiya, you are in a bit of a difficult situation, a junior in my eyes is some before they have qualified, so i would say you were a junior stylist, the thing is salons wanting juniors will want them to be doing an apprentiship so they can pay them 100 a week for 5 days and i think once your over 21 or something they have to pay you more? dont quote me on that coz im not def sure thats right its something like that tho. i think you need to apply as a junior stylist, have you got your own clients at your rent a chair job??
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09-03-10, 12:34 PM

i am studying my level 2 hairdressing just now and last summer after finishing level 1 i applied for "1st yr junior" positions in lots of salons and was told the same that they were looking for 16 yr old school leavers (i am just about to turn 21), and that they wernt looking for anyone with experience which at the time did frustrate me - people had said to me that some salons do look for youngsters out of school because they can pay them less but even though i knew this i was willing to do the work just to be in a salon!! sure that should be enough!
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09-03-10, 12:47 PM

The rules are that if you are under 18 at the start of an apprentiship, the government will pay your course fees and the employer pays a training allowance of 95 per week. If you are 19 when you start, only the FIRST year of course fees are paid, plus after the first year the employer must pay minimum wage, even though you cannot do hair. At 22 the employer must pay full adult min wage, even if you are newly qualified and plead lack of experience.
So employers take on a 16 year old, and by the time they are on full adult wage they have been in salon 6 years and are confident and earning the salon enough money to justify their job.
Sorry I didn't make these rules, and it does cause problems for many people. I don't agree with these rules either.
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10-03-10, 10:46 AM

Thank you all for your feedback. I had a feeling the minimum wage thing would be an issue!

I am now considering volunteering in salons as i was sacked from my current job yesterday by text message for not making them enough money! (see what i mean about management?!)

Do you think this is something salon owners would agree to as I am not expecting any kind of wage? I would be happy just to sweep hair and do odd jobs if that is all I can get! I am at a real loss as to what my next step should be... Sorry to be so clueless!

x
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10-03-10, 12:37 PM

It's a tricky one. Bear in mind that you were only taking 120 a week at the chair rent salon. There is no way the owner can justify paying you 220 a week min wage.
I think there are min wage restrictions on working for free. Unless you are on some sort of course.
If you lack confidence in hairdressing maybe it would be better to do level 3?
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10-03-10, 01:40 PM

bear in mind that a lot of people are looking for jobs just now, what with the colleges about to finish. I've had 3 emails this week looking for work. Good luck x
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15-03-10, 10:55 AM

Hi Hun...
I've had a similar response when it comes to applying for a junior position within a salon.
I'm currently studying level 1 NVQ in hairdressing part time at my local college on night a week.

I recently attended an interview within Toni&Guy for a junior position & the manager said it could possibly be a problem because of my age (22 next week). He then went onto explain that the senior assistant was 18 & alot of the girls that would have 'authority' over me would be younger than me.

IMO i think its alot harder to get into a hairdressing career unless you can get into a salon straight from school via apprenticeship or set up your own salon & find your own clients.

Good luck
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I understand your frustration... - 22-03-10, 11:32 AM

I can appreciate how you are feeling at the moment, I rent a chair where I work and things are really slow at the moment, I feel terrible because I am not making any money for myself or the salon, and it's really starting to knock my confidence. I hope you find a job soon where you can build your confidence and see the great parts of hairdressing
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