Special treatments

Special treatments include:

  • massage
  • manicure
  • acupuncture
  • tattooing
  • cosmetic piercing
  • light treatments, e.g. sunbeds
  • electric treatments, e.g. electrolysis
  • other special treatments, e.g. laser/IPL, semi-permanent skin colouring, vapour, sauna or other bath treatments

If you run an establishment for special treatments from either a commercial unit or a residential address, you may require a licence for your premises.

If you have any intention of carrying out any form of business involving the treatment of customers please contact us to discuss the requirements which you need to meet.

Eligibility criteria

We are required to give notice of your application to the local police. We must also send a copy of the application to the London Fire Authority and the Council’s Planning Department.

You will also be required to display a copy of a Notice of Intention to offer treatments in the window of the premises (this will be provided with your application pack).

Regulations and conditions

The council will attach conditions to the licence, will inspect the licensed premises and may refuse a licence if the conditions at the premises are unsatisfactory or if the terms of the licence are not being complied with. There is a minimum statutory consultation period of four weeks before a licence can be issued.

See our regulations and conditions

Your application may be refused for one of the following reasons:

  • the premises are not suitable, if it does not have safe heating, satisfactory lighting, sanitation, ventilation and does not have adequate fire precautions including fire fighting equipment and fire escapes
  • there is a likelihood of nuisance being caused in the area
  • the person who will manage the premises is not fit and proper
  • the people giving the treatments are not suitably qualified
  • the safety of equipment is not satisfactory
  • there is question as to the safety of the treatment being given
  • you have been convicted of particular offences
  • you fail to comply with any legal requirements.

Members of certain professional bodies are exempt from licensing in certain cases.

You can also apply for exemption on behalf of your organisation

Special treatment guidance notes

Supporting guidance notes for individual treatments.

Apply for special treatments licence

How to apply for a special treatments licence 

Tell us about a change to your existing special treatments licence

Notify us of a change to your special treatments licence

If your special treatments licence application is rejected 

Please contact us in the first instance. If you wish to appeal against a decision of the local authority you may do so to the local magistrates' court. Appeals must be made within 21 days of the date you received notification of the decision in writing. Magistrates' court decisions can be appealed to the Crown Court.


Licensing Team
8th Floor
2 Bristol Avenue

Tel: 020 8359 7995

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