21 June 2024

Skin Tests – A Changing Salon Landscape

The way salons perform skin tests is changing. 80% of clients would rather test once with a high-quality pharmaceutical test than an Allergy Alert Test.

Skin Tests

A recent survey has shown that when it comes to skin tests, the majority of clients would rather not have to visit the salon for a patch test if there’s an alternative they only have to use once. The survey, carried out by the pharmaceutical company, Trichocare Diagnostics, showed that that 8 out of 10 clients prefer to spend £15 to use a clinically proven universal test, than an Allergy Alert Test* they have to repeat.

This news comes after a changing landscape in recent months, after a new protocol announcement by leading industry bodies. The new harmonised professional skin testing protocol was decided earlier this year by The NHBF, The Fellowship for British Hairdressing, The Freelancers Hairdressers Association, The Hair & Barber Council, The Men’s Hairdressing Federation and the Salon Employers Association.

These respected organisations collaborated to harmonise the changes announced by Cosmetics Europe in early 2023 with existing industry best practices. This new protocol defines a clear benchmark that all hair professionals, insurers and hair colour brands can now meet to confidently support and promote the safe use of professional hair colour services in the UK.

Harmonised protocol

The protocol outlines two options, the traditional Allergy Alert Test, and Colourstart. The challenge for many colourists is, that the traditional method of testing, the Allergy Alert Test (AAT), is now near impossible to manage.
Major brands, including Wella Professionals, support the UK harmonised protocol and the use of Colourstart as an alternative way to screen for allergy.

“We are very happy that the industry has united and recognised the importance of providing harmonised guidance for the safe use of colour. We know from our research that clients don’t like skin testing, so offering consumers the choice of being able to use a universal test they may only need to use once is very good news. With brands such as Wella Professionals recognising this new system, we could see the UK lead the way in salon safety globally and will most definitely help raise professional standards,” said Colourstart CEO, Nick Plunkett.    

*survey conducted by Colourstart to 48,000 consumers in April 2024.


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