5 Mistakes Hairdressers make every tax time


1. Not upgrading tools & equipment at tax time


According to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), as an employee, you can claim a deduction for the cost of tools and equipment that you use for work*, and the cost of any necessary repairs to work tools and equipment. As a salon owner/business owner, you could also claim assets and equipment costs as an instant write-off. These laws are subject to change often, so make sure you are checking in with your accountant and the ATO for all the details before you plan to purchase.

*Note that you can’t claim a deduction if the tools and equipment are supplied by your employer or another person.


Equipment may include the following

2. Forgetting to claim laundry or clothing expenses

You can claim a deduction for the cost of buying, hiring, mending, or cleaning specific uniforms that are unique and distinctive to your job i.e containing a business logo or name. You can also claim a deduction for protective clothing you or your employer want you to wear, such as aprons, face masks, and gloves.

You can’t claim a deduction if your employer buys, mends or cleans your clothing. You also can’t claim a deduction for the cost of buying or cleaning plain clothing (such as a plain black shirt) even if it's only worn at work.

You can’t claim a deduction for personal grooming and beauty products (hair and skin care products), even if your employer tells you to use them, as they are classified as personal expenses.

3. Not realising you can claim self-education and study expenses


You can claim education expenses if your course relates directly to your current job and it:

  • Maintains or improves the skills and knowledge you need for your current role; such as colouring, cutting and styling courses, all found under our Studio Courses
  • Results in or is likely to increase income from your current employment

Browse the complete range of education opportunities at Haircare Group.

4. Overlooking travel and car expenses

You can claim if you are required to travel away from your home overnight, for example, to a mobile job, a conference, seminar, training course or industry promotion. 

You can claim a deduction for the cost of using your car when you drive:

  • Between separate jobs on the same day – for example, from your hairdresser job to a second job with another employer
  • To and from an alternate workplace for the same employer on the same day, such as a different salon
  • Business-related travel to places such as a non-full-day training session, visiting a supplier

For employees, car costs can be claimed under cents per km or the logbook method. Find out details on claiming motor vehicle expenses.

You generally can’t claim the cost of normal car trips between home and work, even if you work outside normal hours. This includes parking fees and tolls when you drive to and from work.

5. Missing some admin and operation expenses from your claim

As a hairdressing professional, there are other admin expenses you may be able to claim on tax:

  • Salon Merchandising
  • The cost of purchasing work-related books, magazines, journals
  • Work-related internet usage
  • Computers, software, telephones, and other telecommunications equipment - used for work or business purposes.

We hope this general summary will help when budgeting for your salon. We highly recommend you seek professional advice from your accountant or the ATO website and its Tax Time Tool Kit can provide tailored advice for you and your salon. For more news, inspiration and education for salon professionals, explore The Hub from Haircare Group.

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