Claims for compensation in relation to beauty treatments are more common than ever now, partly as a result of the growth of the beauty industry in the UK in recent years. The industry employs in excess of 1 million people and is estimated to be worth around £20 billion this year. With an increased obsession with personal image, more and more people are subjecting themselves to regular cosmetic treatments and the beauty and personal care sector appears to be virtually recession proof.

However, it’s not all positive – with the boom in cosmetic treatments available on the high street, there is also the downside – individuals who suffer at the hands of untrained or irresponsible practitioners, resulting in an increase in beauty claims.

Here are some of the most common problems in the UK, where individuals have suffered and made claims for personal compensation, having received less than satisfactory treatment.

Ear piercing

Although body piercing has become more and more common, ear piercing gone wrong is still responsible for many claims against incompetent or untrained practitioners. The ubiquitous ‘Caflon gun’ used by most people performing ear piercing is designed only for piercing certain parts of the ear – and incorrect use can easily lead to infection and permanent damage to the ear.

IPL and laser treatments

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) and laser treatments are commonly used by beauty therapists and salons to treat a variety of skin conditions and also for hair removal. Unfortunately for some people, there are many cases where the treatments are not administered correctly and the incorrect application of these procedures, either due to extended exposure or incorrect equipment settings, often results in skin burns and scarring. This is most often caused by a lack of training and experience by operators, or failing to carry out recommended testing prior to application to ensure against any adverse skin reaction.

Hair care gone wrong

Common problems associated with hair treatments include allergic reactions as a result of the application of hair dye, tints and other colouring products. Patch testing is essential if dying your hair darker or colouring it for the first time as this allows the hairdresser to ensure that no adverse reaction occurs. Testing should be done around 48 hours prior to the full treatment. While the hair itself may not be permanently damaged, skin and scalp-related problems are common, such as contact dermatitis, causing lumps and rashes, etc.

Tattooing with black henna

With the application of black henna tattoos there is a risk of adverse skin reaction, as the solution contains para-phenylenediamine, the same ingredient used in many black or dark hair colourings. The incorrect use of black henna can lead to life-long skin scarring and other serious skin reactions.

Always make sure you deal with professionally trained and experienced practitioners when considering undergoing any cosmetic or beauty treatments, it pays to be safe – rather than sorry after the event.