A woman with on fire and the heading "Salon Burnout".

Salon Burnout: 10 Prevention Strategies.

Are you plagued by chronic feelings of exhaustion, anxiety, low motivation or dread the day ahead? Have you lost your passion for your work? If you are feeling these overwhelming emotions regularly, you may be suffering from salon burnout. Read on to find out; what is salon burnout, what are the symptoms and how you can prevent this all-consuming beast.

What is Salon Burnout?

Salon burnout is real and not just some made-up new-age waffle. 

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has now recognised workplace burnout and has provided an official definition as follows;

“Burn-out is a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed”.

It is characterized by three dimensions:

  • feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion;
  • increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and
  • reduced professional efficacy.

While workplace burnout is not considered a mental illness, burnout is a mental health issue. 

In a nutshell, salon burnout is physical and emotional exhaustion caused by excessive stress. 

A woman suffering from salon burnout.

What are the Symptoms of Salon Burnout?

We all have bad days and sometimes find it hard to get out of bed in the morning, but salon burnout is a chronic condition where every day is a bad day. 

The symptoms described below may be subtle at first but will gradually become worse if not addressed early. 

Here is a breakdown of the emotional and physical symptoms along with the effects on the salon workplace.

Emotional Symptoms

  • Low motivation
  • Low mood/depression
  • Feeling overwhelmed or helpless
  • Dreading the day ahead
  • Easily annoyed
  • Self-medicating
  • Anxiety
  • Boredom 
  • Decreased creativity.
A woman looking like she is suffering from salon burnout.

Physical Symptoms

  • Tiredness
  • Decreased immunity
  • Frequent headaches or muscle aches
  • Poor sleep
  • Change of appetite
  • Panic attacks

Effects on the Salon workplace.

  • Complacency
  • Increased workplace accidents/mistakes
  • Decreased productivity
  • Increased absenteeism
  • Decreased performance
  • Unhappy clients
  • Poor client retention

Salon Burnout Prevention.

The old saying “Prevention is better than cure” definitely applies here. If you are a salon owner or manager, it is your responsibility to recognise the symptoms in yourself and your employees.  

Taking measures to prevent salon burnout is the best way to keep yourself, your employees and your business healthy.  

A study undertaken by Forbes shows 23% of full-time employees reported feeling burnt out at work very often or always, while 44% reported feeling burnout sometimes. 

These statistics show that burnout is widespread, so prevention should be a priority in the salon industry

Two hands holding a sign with text "Prevention is better than current".

10 Prevention Strategies.

Here are ten prevention strategies you can use to prevent salon burnout.  

These strategies are intended as a guide only.

Always seek advice from a health professional if you are overwhelmed by your work and experiencing chronic stress.

1. Reach Out

Don’t suffer in silence. If you feel you are on your way to salon burnout, its time to put your hand up.

If you are an employee in a salon, speak to your employer. Give your boss a chance to help you feel less overwhelmed by adjusting your schedule or workload.  

If you are a salon owner, reach out to your employees. Think about how you can delegate specific tasks to your staff so you can take a little time out.  

Talk to your family and friends or co-workers. Sometimes just having a good old fashioned vent to a friend or loved one can help you put things into a better perspective. 

You may also like to consider consulting a counsellor or other health professional if you do not have a support network. 

Two hands reaching out to avoid salon burnout.

2. Build on Workplace Relationships.

Fostering healthy relationships with your colleagues is a must in the busy salon environment. A healthy salon culture keeps everyone happy and productive.  

Take the time to participate in fun social activities with your co-workers. Even a quick coffee or cocktail after a long week gives everyone the chance to debrief and have a laugh.  

Salon co workers having a cocktail

Be sure to address any conflicts with work colleagues as soon as possible, so any grievances don’t get out of hand. To learn how to deal effectively with salon conflicts, go to “Salon Drama – How to Manage Staff Conflicts”. 

Great teamwork can also help reduce the incidence of burnout in the salon. A cohesive team that is always on the same page is essential to keep the day running smoothly. To learn more about salon teamwork, go to “How to Build a Motivated Salon Team.” 

3. Find Value in Your Work

Reminding yourself of the value in your work can also help to keep you in a better headspace. Why did you start in the salon industry? What were your goals? Have you reached your goals? Do you need to make new goals?

Try to focus on the aspects of the salon that you enjoy. For example, you may find value in making your clients happy. Maybe you love to be creative and enjoy the outcomes of your artistic endeavours. 

Looking for the positives in your salon work can help rekindle your passion and prevent salon burnout.

4. Learn How to Say “No”.

You can do anything but not everything.”

Are you a people pleaser? If you are not the most assertive person and you find yourself saying “Yes” to everything, you may become overwhelmed.  

Your work colleagues may be more inclined to ask you to do something for them or take on extra clients because they know you will always say “Yes”. 

It is okay to say “No”. Give yourself permission to be more assertive and stop taking on extra work.

If you need some help learning to say “No”, here is an informative article from Psych Central to give you some tips.

5. Create a Work/Life Balance.

A cup of coffee and a page with Work/Life Balance.

Making sure you create a work/life balance is the key to feeling satisfied. Is your salon job taking over your life? Are you working gruelling hours? Of course, you will start to feel overwhelmed and dissatisfied with your life if this is the case. 

Think about the activities, hobbies or people that make you happy and find a way to carve out some time to do the things you love.  

Spending time on your interests is necessary to keep you feeling fresh and revitalised. 

Take some time out once in a while and spend a whole day on yourself. You might like to go to the beach, read a book, take in a movie or get a relaxing massage. Whatever makes you feel pampered and rejuvenated. 

6. Unplug

Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes…including you.  

Being accessible 24/7 can be exhausting. Constantly checking emails, answering the phone, texts and updating social media can take up a lot of time during the day and night.

Set yourself some technology boundaries. Pick a time every day where you unplug entirely. Mealtimes are an excellent time to unplug. How long has it been since you ate your lunch or dinner in peace without getting notifications on your phone?  

Being present in the moment is very hard to do when are being bombarded with notifications or emails. So unplug your phone or tablet and learn to live fully in the present. Your brain will thank you for it.

7. Take Care of Yourself.

A woman on a beach meditating

Self-care means taking care of yourself so you can function at full capacity. If you don’t take good care of your mind and body, your health will suffer, and so will your performance in the salon. 

Here are some ways to take care of yourself;

  • Create a good sleep routine
  • Get basic regular health and dental checks
  • Take Daily exercise
  • Foster healthy eating habits
  • Attend to meditation, spiritual or religious needs
  • Take regular vacations
  • Have fun and laugh as often as possible

Taking care of yourself should be a priority. Maintaining good health gives you every chance to prevent salon burnout and keep your energy level high. 

8. Salon Time Management.

A woman wearing a large watch for time management.

Time management is an essential skill for all salon owners or employees to acquire. 

Time management is crucial to improve the efficiency and productivity of your salon business and help you to prevent salon burnout.

You may have the best intentions to improve your time management, but let’s face it. Without planning, you are sure to fall short. 

Careful planning is vital to your success in reducing time wastage. Planning gives you a clear direction and path to follow. 

Scheduling is the key to easy time management. Not only should you be scheduling your day but also your week, month and year. 

Each morning, dedicating 15 minutes to your daily and weekly plan can keep your week running smoothly.

Once a month take half an hour to look over the upcoming month and consider things like goals, tasks, ordering, paying bills and marketing. 

Planning a year ahead of time might seem like a headache, but in the long run, you will be so much more organised. 

Once a year sit down and write in your yearly calendar all the events, expos, staff training events, and of course marketing campaigns you will implement over the next 12 months. To read more on time management skills go to; “Salon Time Management- How to Make More Time.”

9. Education.

Education in a barbershop

Do you feel like your work has become stagnant? Boredom or a lack of being able to express creativity can lead to burnout. Doing the same thing day-in-day-out can start to grind on you.  

Learning a new salon skill or technique is a great way to revive your passion for your work. Challenging yourself to try and master a new skill has many benefits.  

According to various studies, learning a new skill helps to release the neurotransmitter, dopamine. This feel-good neurotransmitter enables you to feel happier and more motivated and can improve workplace performance. 

Statistics show an overwhelming number of professionals (66%) say that they feel more confident after they spend time learning and also experienced feeling motivated (65%), successful (53%) and proud (52%). 

If you are a salon owner, implementing regular training days for your staff can help prevent them from settling into a rut.  

You may also consider attending salon expos, as seeing the latest innovations and trends can help spark your passion. Not only will your business see benefits, but your brain will get some much-needed use to prevent burnout. 

The same applies when learning a new skill or taking up a hobby at home. So get that brain into gear and get yourself some of those feel-good hormones. 

10. Automate Your Salon.

Salon client looking at an iPad

Being bogged down by paperwork, taking constant calls and managing your finances can lead you down the path to salon burnout.

Why not make it easier on yourself by automating your salon and avoid all those tedious and time-consuming jobs you dread?

Automating your salon with a great all-in-one management system like Neko makes such a difference to how your day runs.  

Salon Software is the key to streamlining your day with improved time management and reduced stress. And of course, less stress is something we all need in this busy industry.  


Salon burnout is a real, so you must take all the steps you can to avoid going down this path.

Chronic work-related stress can be avoided by being aware of the salon burnout prevention strategies you can implement.

Being aware of the emotional and physical symptoms is imperative to spot signs of salon burnout and nip them in the bud.  

Remember “Prevention is better than cure”, so be sure to follow the above techniques to keep yourself happy and well.  

Taking care of yourself, your employees or your co-workers is vital in building a happier and healthier salon workplace.

At Neko, we enjoy empowering our clients to run a smooth, efficient and burnout-free salon.

If your Salon isn’t already using Neko Salon Software, its time to get on board so you can prevent salon burnout in your business.

Why not try it for yourself. Sign up today for a free 14-day trial. https://www.getneko.com/free-trial/

Already using another software system? No worries, we will migrate all your data into our system so you are ready to go. 

Neko Salon Software is the simple and affordable key to making your business brilliant.

No hidden fees, no contracts and great pricing.

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