Barbers and scalp psoriasis – what’s the link?

barber scalp psoriasis

New research reveals that it’s important for barbers and hairdressers to have confident conversations with their clients about scalp psoriasis.

So the Lions Barber Collective, Psoriasis Association and LEO Pharma have teamed up urge people to give others a ‘heads up’ about their scalp psoriasis.


What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is more than a skin condition and can impact people both physically and emotionally. Psoriasis affects around 1.8 million people in the UK with more than half having psoriasis on their scalp. The condition can appear as a thick build-up of scaly skin, which can cause dandruff-like flakes to fall. Scalp psoriasis can also be visible around the hairline, forehead, neck and behind the ears and is often itchy and painful.

In recent months, hair professionals have seen and heard the frustrations of clients who haven’t been able to visit a salon. However, findings show that prior to COVID-19 restrictions, two thirds of people with scalp psoriasis had deliberately postponed or avoided appointments with their barber or hairdresser.

Anxiety around other people’s misconceptions of the condition also meant that 40% of people felt uncomfortable discussing their scalp psoriasis with their hairdresser. Over half (52%) of those surveyed felt that providing hairdressers and barbers with more practical training to support people who have scalp psoriasis would be beneficial.

Tom Chapman, barber and founder of the Lions Barber Collective commented: “Hair professionals are in a unique position to help clients, through the trust and bond we build with them. We often have incredibly strong relationships where clients become friends and can share aspects of their lives with us. I would like this position of trust to be used to help those with scalp psoriasis feel at ease with their condition, particularly considering the impact it can have on mental health, as the research shows.  Partnering with the Psoriasis Association and LEO Pharma we have developed guides to help facilitate these conversations within the salon setting.”

Produced for the #HeadsUpToPsoriasis campaign, A guide to confident conversations with your clients, provides helpful information on how hair professionals can support clients who may be living with scalp psoriasis. Including how to initiate conversations and practical tips on how you can create a relaxed and positive experience, encouraging them to return to the salon or barber shop again.

Heads Up to Psoriasis is a partnership activity between LEO Pharma, the Psoriasis Association, and the Lions Barber Collective. Its aim is to both raise awareness and to empower people living with scalp psoriasis to have better conversations about their condition – both in their everyday lives, and with their healthcare professional – so that they can gain the support they need to live well.

A guide to confident conversations with your clients, along with additional practical materials and tips to support those living with scalp psoriasis can be found at


Psoriasis Association. (2019). Psoriasis & Treatments – Psoriasis Association. [online] Available at: [Accessed Sept. 2020].

Mental Health Foundation. (2012). See Psoriasis look deeper – Mental Health Foundation. [online] Available at:

The Journal of the German Society of Dermatology, 2011, Scalp Psoriasis, Gottfried Woze et al., DOI: 10.1111/j.1610-0387.2010.07412.x

DERM-012 AUG 2020 Online survey conducted between 6th -13th August 2020 of people living with scalp psoriasis. (at least 504 responses)


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