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  • Writer's pictureHayley from HRM Beauty

To Tip or Not To Tip?

When you go to a restaurant, most of us will leave a tip without even thinking. Even though the waiter/waitress hasn't cooked the food, or dedicated their time solely to you.

However when it comes to your hairdresser/barber/therapist we don't bother. Why not?

It can be a minefield, as it is usually on percentage, 10%?, 12.5%? 20%? Just Round up? There's no hard and fast rule. Although some restaurants automatically add 12.5%.

The only time there might be a grey area is in a salon you don't tip the owner. (Although I'm pretty sure they wouldn't turn it down). The reason is the same as in restaurants, the cooks and owners are usually paid more.

For an independent therapist we are 'all', cleaner, receptionist, admin, therapist and owner. Chances are we do pay ourselves a lower wage (usually whatever is left over after all the expenses and re-investments).

I would recommend handling tipping with dignity. Making a dramatic point about 'keeping the change' when it's 50p on a £49.50 spend, is properly not the best way to go. It doesn't have to be a big song and dance. If a therapist doesn't accept tips, chances are they will let you know either verbally or it will be on their website etc. They may even have a charity box instead.

I did find I had more people tipping when I had a reception desk in place and the paying process was more formal. I hardly ever get tips on a mobile appointment. Whether your therapist is in a salon, home based or mobile they are still offering a one-to-one service.

I am always very grateful for any gratitude, although a very small percentage do. One client never tipped but always brought me an amazing Christmas present. Anything is always gratefully accepted.

Some tip for the reason they know our wages are low and like a waitress/waiter it is expected. Some only tip for outstanding or above and beyond service (which is alway a bit bit difficult if you try to give 100% on every treatment), but is understandable.

If you don't tip at all, do you tip when eating out? If yes, maybe I have given you food for thought, if you don't tip at all, thats fine, it is not compulsory but if your child was doing this job, would you want people to tip them, knowing they were paid minimum wage in a skilled job?

Not sure what 12.5% is:

£5 = 63p (10 min eyebrow thread)

£10 = £1.25

£15 = £1.88 (an underarm wax)

£20 = £2.50

£30 = £3.75 (30 min lash lift)

£50 = £6.25 (1 hour massage)

£70 = £8.75 (90 min massage)

How do you show your gratitude?
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