Menopause in the workplace: What is the beauty industry doing?

by | Jan 31, 2024

Women are the rulers of our workforce, but are they being supported with their menopause symptoms in the workplace? 

According to the Value of Beauty 2023, the British beauty industry’s workforce is made up of 86% women, with the majority of them being business owners. 

But, how far is the industry going to support those going through menopause? 

Here Fleur Nyman, Sales Director at Kenneth Green Associates (KGA), a leading UK fragrance distributor, shares how the business is combating stigma surrounding menopause, and supporting women experiencing it.

‘My main objective was simple – open up the conversation about menopause in the workplace and support women in our company who were going through menopause, with or without symptoms, to ensure that there is somewhere to go for help, advice and reassurance,’ Nyman says. Before continuing: ‘We also wanted to ensure that, whilst sometimes things can become overwhelming, there are options and support to continue and indeed build their careers.’ 

Over recent years, we have seen an increasing number of beauty businesses commit to menopause policies and initiatives. Particularly following the Wellbeing of Women’s launch of the Menopause Workplace Pledge in October 2021. 

In October 2023, No7 launched its ‘Changing the Face of Menopause at Work’ in collaboration with AllBright. The free-to-access resources ‘give perimenopausal and menopausal individuals practical support and expert advice to tackle some of the challenges that menopause can present in the workplace’. 

This is just one example of menopause-related campaigns, with the likes of Estée Lauder and L’Oréal Group also launching internal support initiatives – the latter being its ongoing ‘Share & Care’ programme. 

However, whilst there are clear advancements in awareness and recognition, Nyman notes that lots of businesses are lacking in practical support measures: ‘With so many women in our industry, the “tick box” of the policy is one thing.

‘We don’t want employers to have a negative view of women joining companies and advancing their careers if they are a certain age. But, with a little coordination and a lead in the business, these are low-cost ways to educate, empower and support women in their careers which naturally have a huge benefit to businesses.’

Below, she has listed some of the key strategies KGA has implemented to make sure the workplace is accessible for those experiencing menopause. 

 

  • ‘Introduction of menopause ambassadors in the office and in the field. People must have someone to go to other than their line manager.
  • Quarterly ‘Menopause Cafes’ where people can drop in to share experiences and tips. This has been the single most motivating thing; the shared experiences have helped so many of us. 
  • A library of books on the subject, accessible to all, including employees’ partners.
  • New uniforms for our instore teams
  • A kit for in-store teams, to keep with them, including products like herbal teas, wipes etc. 
  • Nutrition seminars, where people can find out about the best diet decisions they can make to manage symptoms.’

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