The brands helping the beauty industry bounce back after Covid-19

It's time to Bring Back Beauty

beauty industry covid-19
beauty industry covid-19

It's time to Bring Back Beauty

The beauty and salon industries were some of the most severely impacted by Covid-19 restrictions. While the hospitality industry was granted an early reopen date and a VAT reduction, salons, especially those working in close contact, were the last businesses to resume trading after more than 200 days of lockdown.

While it's tough, hard times bring out the best in people, and the industry came together in solidarity to support one another. From letters to the government to donating products to those on the frontline, here's how some of our favourite brands have helped the industry get back on its feet after Covid-19.

L’Oréal Professional Products

L’Oréal Professionnel Paris, the founding brand of the L’Oréal Group, was founded in collaboration with hairdressers 112 years ago. Now, the company feels a responsibility to support and protect them by leading the way in helping the industry bounce back after the pandemic. L’Oréal Professional Products Division (which includes L’Oréal Professionnel Paris, Kérastase, Matrix, and Redken) began with their Back to Business Salon Guides, which offer detailed information to help salons prepare for their safe reopening. The brand was also able to offer a wealth of information through its virtual education platform, L'Oréal Access, where hairdressers could brush up on their knowledge while salons were closed. For every Covid-19 Hygiene and Safety e-learning training completed, L’Oréal donated £1 to the Hair and Beauty Charity to support the most vulnerable beauty professionals facing challenges. L’Oréal Professionnel Paris has also recently launched the 'French Balayage: Only In Salon' campaign which aims to drive footfall back into salons. It's their biggest drive ever as a £1 million investment, consumer media campaign that encourages people to get back into salons by offering £10 off coupons.

Herbal Essences

Herbal Essences donated £30,000 to the British Red Cross to help fight Covid, alongside a wider support plan from its parent company P&G. The plan included Pantene donating to Women's Aid, Olay donating to Young Women's Trust and Head & Shoulders donating to mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). P&G's haircare brands as well as Olay and Oral-B also donated £890,000 worth of products to frontline workers at NHS Trusts across England.

Hair by Sam McKnight

Hair by Sam McKnight is a small start-up with just three employees who all continued to work from home during the pandemic. It was hugely important to Sam to ensure his employees were safe and secure. He offered his expert advice to the British Beauty Council when consulting on the government guidelines for the reopening of salons and photoshoots. To show their support, the brand started a weekly social media initiative #samSPOTLIGHT to shine a light on new and established talent in the hairdressing industry. The brand also donated to Beauty Banks, a charity supplying personal care and hygiene essentials to those who can’t afford it, and Sam spent the day delivering the essentials to schools around London.

Phil Smith Be Gorgeous & Smith England

Phil Smith hosted five live Q&A's across social media, offering advice on how salons can adapt to the changes effectively, survive the pandemic and continue to grow as a business. He was also extremely vocal about the Save Our Salons campaign to drop VAT for salons. The brand, Phil Smith Be Gorgeous, donated products to the staff at Sailsbury hospital as a thank you for all their hard work. Phil also kept all of his employees in their jobs and working from home.

Schwarzkopf Professional

Schwarzkopf Professional’s motto, “together, a passion for hair,” came alive throughout the pandemic as the brand was determined to keep hairdressers and salon owners inspired and supported. Coming up with creative ways to keep the industry connected was their top priority. This led to online immersive education sessions, motivating interviews and practical solutions to help freelancers and business owners get back on their feet. Including a home delivery service enabling salons to retail directly to their clients. A fast, free and contactless service that created much needed extra income while salons were closed. The brand also supported frontline workers with care packages and products. Overall, Schwarzkopf Professional hosted 45 Instagram Lives, donated 19,000 hair care products, held 3,270 virtual training sessions for 29,272 hairdressers and made 749 home deliveries direct to salon clients.

Authentic Beauty Concept

A small brand with a major focus on wellbeing and self-care, Authentic Beauty Concept's central priority was to encourage industry professionals to look after their own health and happiness. The brand created content surrounding mindfulness and self-care, including virtual yoga sessions, sound baths and mediation. The brand built its community by hosting 32 Instagram Lives and community social zoom meetings which allowed salons to learn and connect.


The brand began its many initiatives by launching the Enhanced Service Safety Guidelines with online training to become Clean Touch Certified. These guidelines were developed in collaboration with an epidemiologist for skin and close contact service professionals that specifically addressed the risks associated with Covid-19. The brand then launched the Digital Partner Programme, allowing their accounts to earn 30% commission in cash or as account credit when referring clients to purchase directly with, giving profitable opportunities to practitioners who had to remain closed. At a Global level, Dermalogica established a global business resource page offering bi-weekly live streams, financial planning guides, online marketing materials, digital class curriculums, and more, to help everyone in the professional skincare industry adapt and plan.

Torey Cassidy

Torey Cassidy is the Beauty Producer and Junior Beauty Writer at Marie Claire UK. Whether it's organising a cover shoot or writing about the latest beauty products, no one day in the role is the same, and she loves the chaos of it all.

Hailing from Dublin, she spent much of her childhood in the Irish countryside but craved the hustle and bustle of city life, so, packed her bags and moved to London in 2017 to study Fashion Journalism at the University of the Arts London. Throughout this time, she interned everywhere she could, from magazines to assisting stylists on set, probably spreading herself a little too thin but lapping up every opportunity.

Finishing her degree as a Covid graduate in 2020, she then took on the bold life of a freelancer. From producing shoots for John Lewis & Partners to assisting stylists with music videos and campaigns before landing her dream role at Marie Claire, almost a year later.

When not navigating a career, Torey can be found at the pub with friends debating the quality of a pint of Guinness, flogging her vintage finds on Depop or most likely on TikTok. She is obsessed with TikTok.