I’m pregnant, how do I do this?

fifi

New Member
#1
I’ve been a busy mobile hairdresser for the last 8 years, have worked my backside off to get my reliable clientele and it’s all been paying off the last couple of years, I finally work the hours I want, travel very short distances, charge the highest rates in my area and have it pretty much all how I want it to be.

Here’s the catch. I found out last week that I’m pregnant (planned). As much as we ‘planned’ this pregnancy, I gave no thought to how I would physically cope with my job.

I advertise myself as a ‘luxury mobile hairdresser’ and charge top of the range prices and have some quite wealthy clients, so I don’t feel I can really start ‘relaxing’ their level of treatment (I wash all their hair for them leaning over their bath, I bring a chair, colour trolley and obviously huge amounts of general stuff with me).

I already do two trips to my car to gather all my heavy bags of equipment, which definitely takes some strength (I do lots of gym training so I’m normal life this is OK), but I find myself going up and down a LOT of multiple staircases, parking sometimes down the road from a persons house and carrying all my gear whist breaking out a sweat sometimes haha. Oh and I have three clients that are in wheelchairs!

I live in London so most of my clients are young and don’t have husbands or kids, they just all work like me, mostly freelancers and work-from-homers etc. I don’t have any space in my home to do hair as I live in a teeny maisonette that is being renovated, plus I have two large dogs that I’m not sure everyone will love (I love them of course!) my home is not Hairdressing appropriate.

I can’t afford to earn a lot less than usual during my pregnancy as I have a mortgage and bills to pay, plus I’ll be off for some time when I’ve had the baby with such a teeny amount of money paid by the government, that I actually really need to save up whilst pregnant. I’m not really worried about what will happen to clients after the pregnancy as I will deal with that nearer the time, right now the safety aspect is very much on my mind. And I’m so early on, I don’t want to tell anyone I’m pregnant yet. Haven’t even told the family!

Has anyone else been through a similar situation????
 

rachelizabeth

Well-Known Member
#2
I’m 8+4 weeks and already temporarily closed my salon because I have hyperemesis and can’t work and been in hospital. You never know what’s going to happen just work whilst you can and avoid heavy lifting and listen to your body. Unfortunately your health and the baby comes first and does put your career on the back burner. It’s difficult but it is what it is :confused: I hope you have an easy pregnancy got my fingers crossed for you!! :)
 

fifi

New Member
#3
Aww that hyperemesis sounds so horrible, hopefully you feel better soon. Thanks for the advice and good luck xx
 

JemmaBeauty

Active Member
#4
Different situation to you but as a massage therapist I really struggled physically when I was pregnant - it was like my strength disappeared overnight and I felt exhausted and in pain all the time. I persevered for as I could then after crying every single day I decided to cut my hours down. It wasn't ideal because my aim was to work all the way through to make as much money as possible to cover my maternity leave - but I decided my health and well being was more important. My husband and I sat down and re-jigged our finances - altered our phone payment plans and got rid of the sky tv etc. I started buying baby items second hand (which personally is not something I EVER thought I would do!!!) But I joined a local baby buy and sell Facebook group and got loads of great stuff almost new and fraction of the price.

It was a difficult decision and I was so frightened about the impact on my business. And yes I had clients who weren't happy! I also altered my treatment menu to suit me better - so I scrapped 90 minute massages (as I had a habit of fainting!!) and I took on more nails clients, which has never been my strong point but I had to make money in other treatments.
I also added more time in-between clients so that I wasn't rushing and could take my time setting up and making sure that I ate properly.

Then at 5 months pregnant I decided to stop all massages longer than 30 minutes. Some regulars totally understood and continued to book with me, and some didn't. Some people thought I was just being precious!! Again it was so so difficult as I was turning away money!! And it was money that I desperately needed. But I had to do what was right for me at the time and I don't regret my decisions.

I then finished work 7 weeks before my due date and started maternity leave early. As you say, you don't get much from the government but I took the money early knowing that I would have to start back work early too - which was fine. I started working again when my little one was 7 months old and I still only work part time now (she's now 13 months) as I don't have family close by. Its still a juggle financially but something you get used to.
 

House Beauty

Well-Known Member
#5
I’ve been a busy mobile hairdresser for the last 8 years, have worked my backside off to get my reliable clientele and it’s all been paying off the last couple of years, I finally work the hours I want, travel very short distances, charge the highest rates in my area and have it pretty much all how I want it to be.

Here’s the catch. I found out last week that I’m pregnant (planned). As much as we ‘planned’ this pregnancy, I gave no thought to how I would physically cope with my job.

I advertise myself as a ‘luxury mobile hairdresser’ and charge top of the range prices and have some quite wealthy clients, so I don’t feel I can really start ‘relaxing’ their level of treatment (I wash all their hair for them leaning over their bath, I bring a chair, colour trolley and obviously huge amounts of general stuff with me).

I already do two trips to my car to gather all my heavy bags of equipment, which definitely takes some strength (I do lots of gym training so I’m normal life this is OK), but I find myself going up and down a LOT of multiple staircases, parking sometimes down the road from a persons house and carrying all my gear whist breaking out a sweat sometimes haha. Oh and I have three clients that are in wheelchairs!

I live in London so most of my clients are young and don’t have husbands or kids, they just all work like me, mostly freelancers and work-from-homers etc. I don’t have any space in my home to do hair as I live in a teeny maisonette that is being renovated, plus I have two large dogs that I’m not sure everyone will love (I love them of course!) my home is not Hairdressing appropriate.

I can’t afford to earn a lot less than usual during my pregnancy as I have a mortgage and bills to pay, plus I’ll be off for some time when I’ve had the baby with such a teeny amount of money paid by the government, that I actually really need to save up whilst pregnant. I’m not really worried about what will happen to clients after the pregnancy as I will deal with that nearer the time, right now the safety aspect is very much on my mind. And I’m so early on, I don’t want to tell anyone I’m pregnant yet. Haven’t even told the family!

Has anyone else been through a similar situation????
Start with a risk assessment. You need to outline where the issues would be and plan for them.

Then you can explain to your clients, they will congratulate you and you can give them adjustments. Eg my mums hairdresser had me over the kitchen sink to wash my hair. It was totally fine and actually perfect for my limited mobility til she started chatting and ignoring that I was leaning over a sink and getting uncomfortable waiting and dripping. Pay attention and do the wash quickly. You could massage while they are in the chair rather than when shampooing.

As for heavy lifting, ‘hi can you come out and help me with my other bag?’ Everyone likes to be asked for help. It’s a human need.

Then if doing a colour service or something long offer them a cuppa, make it and sit with them. You don’t need to be on your feet all the time.
 

riva

Active Member
#6
Would you be able to afford an apprentice to follow you around? Maybe work only 2-3 days/week and book all appointments then. Longer term view would be that you still keep your clients as long as possible even if most of the money is going towards the apprentice. Clients will also possibly only lose you for 1-2 cuts/sessions only and so more likely to go back to you as its really hard finding someone to trust. Just a thought..
 

fifi

New Member
#7
Start with a risk assessment. You need to outline where the issues would be and plan for them.

Then you can explain to your clients, they will congratulate you and you can give them adjustments. Eg my mums hairdresser had me over the kitchen sink to wash my hair. It was totally fine and actually perfect for my limited mobility til she started chatting and ignoring that I was leaning over a sink and getting uncomfortable waiting and dripping. Pay attention and do the wash quickly. You could massage while they are in the chair rather than when shampooing.

As for heavy lifting, ‘hi can you come out and help me with my other bag?’ Everyone likes to be asked for help. It’s a human need.

Then if doing a colour service or something long offer them a cuppa, make it and sit with them. You don’t need to be on your feet all the time.
The main thing I am concerned about it the heavy lifting (as worst case scenario I can make them wash their own hair), I have 3 clients in wheelchairs and one elderly disabled, obviously the main reason they have me is because they can’t get to salons. The majority of people will help me yes, but the amount of stuff I carry, I’m not sure if a lot of them would even manage! We’re talking about 30kg here (which I manage fine as I am a weightlifter)

I’m worried it’ll get to a point where I’ll just have to quit. Which would be so boring being on Mat leave long before the baby is due, I’d be desperate to be working and they’d be desperate for their hair to be done the main risks are me carrying heavy items (often up & down staircases and through teeny doorways) and the length of time spent standing, as I could have a stool but that’s just another heavy thing to carry!

Would you be able to afford an apprentice to follow you around? Maybe work only 2-3 days/week and book all appointments then. Longer term view would be that you still keep your clients as long as possible even if most of the money is going towards the apprentice. Clients will also possibly only lose you for 1-2 cuts/sessions only and so more likely to go back to you as its really hard finding someone to trust. Just a thought..
I was considering
Would you be able to afford an apprentice to follow you around? Maybe work only 2-3 days/week and book all appointments then. Longer term view would be that you still keep your clients as long as possible even if most of the money is going towards the apprentice. Clients will also possibly only lose you for 1-2 cuts/sessions only and so more likely to go back to you as its really hard finding someone to trust. Just a thought..
I was considering this, but I don’t know if I’d have to then become an employer and set up my business totally differently, especially if it were someone under 18, there would be lots of legal implications surely of taking someone who is technically a child into strangers’ houses and around in my car all day and being held responsible for their health and safety etc, I’m not sure if that would be more stress and money than just giving up work!

I was considering

I was considering this, but I don’t know if I’d have to then become an employer and set up my business totally differently, especially if it were someone under 18, there would be lots of legal implications surely of taking someone who is technically a child into strangers’ houses and around in my car all day and being held responsible for their health and safety etc, I’m not sure if that would be more stress and money than just giving up work!
But I like the idea, if there were a way for me to do it ‘casually’ (not as an employer) cash in hand and off the record, without it being illegal. Which I’m not sure is possible
 

riva

Active Member
#8
But I like the idea, if there were a way for me to do it ‘casually’ (not as an employer) cash in hand and off the record, without it being illegal. Which I’m not sure is possible
Talk to a few apprenticeship firms out there. You bring up some really valid points. Not sure about the legalities. I have experience of apprentices for receptionist roles and the companies that source them can be quite helpful.
Beauty schools might be an idea. Have something formally drawn out - lots of employment contracts that can be edited for really good value like lawbite https://www.lawbite.co.uk/legal-and-business-documents for which you can join for a free trial and get some templates, then cancel. (of course I forgot to cancel on time and ended up paying for the first months - but it was only cheap).
 

k_lee110788

Active Member
#9
You will manage. I found out I was pregnant with my 3rd baby just 2 weeks after I became self employed. It wasn't planned and I was devastated. I just continued as normal and when I was about 6 months pregnant I started renting a chair but still did the odd client mobile (clients that wouldn't come to the salon). I worked right up until the day before my baby was born and then was back in the salon when my baby was 4 weeks old even though I had a c-section. I have to put my baby in nursery which is an absolute fortune and I miss him so much but it's what we have to do to keep our business.

Good luck, you will be fine
 

fifi

New Member
#10
I’m considering this but have never rented a chair before, did you tell them you were pregnant and were going to be off work very soon after starting? Did they mind/know about that? I’d quite like to rent a chair in a salon as I can think of many scenarios when it would be easier than being mobile when I’ve had the baby, just having one place of work and set hours etc. How did you go about finding the place? I’m not sure if many salons round my way even do chair renting anymore (I’m in London).
 

fifi

New Member
#11
So I know all about maternity allowance for self employed hairdressers and how it works (basically it’s a stupidly teeny amount of money ), I’ve accepted the fact that I’m just going to have to rely on my other half’s income for quite a bit of time. It’ll be a financial struggle, but I’m sure that’s the case for most couples having babies.
My issue is about my business- I’m reading a lot of threads on here about women returning to work after a matter of weeks after having their babies this will be my first and I want to be the best mum I can be, and spend as much time with my baby as poss, also planning on breastfeeding for as long as possible so I won’t be rushing back and sooner than my friends who work in offices do.
Is there anyone else here who’s gone back to work after 9-12 months and rebuilt their business again, whilst working part time hours? Or am I just mad thinking this might work? I know the clients will kick off but in all honesty, as much as I love them and my business, I don’t care. Baby comes first.
 

k_lee110788

Active Member
#12
It was the end of November when I found my salon rent a chair. A stylist had left with no notice so they were desperate for someone to start straight away. I told them I was pregnant and due in March so I would only be renting the chair until the end of Feb. I ended up loving it so I stayed which is why I only had 4 weeks off as I didnt want to loose my chair. If i was mobile i would of had longer off. The salon owner is lovely, I only worked a few hours a week to keep the regular clients, I didnt take any new ones until baby was nearly a year old so I still had plenty of time at home with him. If I was coming in to do a quick trim I would bring baby with me and the girls would fuss over him while I worked.
 

#13
I’m a mobile hairdresser and I had three babies I worked up until 8 months my clients were very supportive they would wash there own hair but I made sure all the colour was out. They always made sure I had plenty to eat and drink they treated me really kindly even though I would take my own food and drink. If they are regular clients I’m sure they will understand if they want there hair done you can’t go over board. Just let them know your pregnant and if they would mind removing the colour I’m sure they will understand. They helped me will all my bags and luggage to x
 
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