British Beauty Council Patron, Timely, have introduced a new feature where teams and clients can surface their pronouns within the Timely platform.
As explained by Timely, conversations around gender identity might feel uncomfortable, but when you’re in the business of helping people express themselves, getting someone’s pronouns right can be pretty powerful.
Timely’s Mary Haddock-Staniland is a member of the British Beauty Council’s DEI Committee, which has been established to, amongst other things, amplify and celebrate the voices of all the communities the industry serves so that everyone can feel seen, heard, valued and excited to engage with the beauty industry.
Timely have compiled ‘Ally Etiquette for LGBTQIA+ Clients’:
What are pronouns?
Pronouns are terms we use to describe ourselves and our chosen gender. When we say ‘gender’ we’re talking about how someone feels inside, not their biological sex. While a cisgender or transgender person might use she/her and he/him, others might prefer gender neutral pronouns such as they/them/their or ze/hir/hirs (pronounced zee/here/heres) or she/they and he/they if they’re gender fluid. It’s important to note that someone’s appearance or how they dress might not necessarily pair with their pronouns.
Why are they important?
At some point or another we’ve all felt disrespected when someone has forgotten or mistaken our name. Pronouns are as much a part of someone’s identity as their name. Getting them right means more to people than you might think – it’s a way to help someone feel respected and seen.
What role do hair and beauty professionals play?
Hair and beauty professionals play a huge role in affirming someone’s gender identity and have the power to help someone express how they feel on the inside to the rest of the world. Hair and makeup are often the first port of call for someone looking to experiment with their identity.
How should you discuss pronouns with clients?
It sounds simple, but asking someone what their pronouns are when you say hello puts everyone at ease. Better still, Business Management Software Timely’s new pronoun selector allows clients to self identify their personal pronouns when they make an online booking. This seemingly simple feature creates a comfortable, welcoming client experience for anyone who walks through your salon doors.
“Using the pronoun selector has not only ensured my clientele to feel comfortable and safe, but it’s allowed me to charge clients based on the skill, time and product used rather than by gendered categories,”
– Laura Spinney, hair stylist and owner of Mullet Mommy.