Massage and Special Treatments Licence

Unlike many authorities, Torfaen does not require businesses delivering massage or similar therapeutic treatments to be registered. However, certain high risk activities such as Ear Piercing, Electrolysis, Tattooing and Acupuncture are still required to be registered – visit the Skin piercing (tattooing, electrolysis, acupuncture and ear piercing) area of the website for more details of these licences.

You must, however, ensure compliance with health & safety legislation, which places a general duty on you to ensure the health & safety of both yourself and your clients. This relates to the range of general risks which may be present in your premises, as well as any foreseeable risks that could arise from the treatments you carry out.

Health and Safety at Work Etc. Act

The Health and Safety at Work Etc. Act 1974 is the key act which will affect all commercial concerns, whether self-employed or an employee, and whether mobile or based at a Salon.

Under this Act a number of Regulations have been made. The more relevant of these include:

  • The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981;
  • The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989;
  • The Health and Safety (Information for Employees) Regulations 1989;
  • Health and Safety (Training for Employment) Regulations 1990;
  • The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992;
  • Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992
  • Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992;
  • Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992;
  • The Reporting of Injuries Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995;
  • The Health and Safety (Consultation with Employees) Regulations 1996;
  • The Health and Safety (Young Persons) Regulations 1997;
  • Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998;
  • The Working Time Regulations 1998;
  • The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002.

Getting further information

Further information on the health and safety legislation affecting your business can be found on the Health & Safety Executive website.

More tailored health & safety information and best practice guidance on a range of therapeutic treatments (including massage) may be found in the priced publication , 'Body Art, Cosmetic Therapies and Other Special Treatments' (CIEH/Barbour Index). Available from Chadwick House Publishing Group at Chadwick House Publishing Group, Chadwick Court, 15 Hatfields, London, SE1 8DJ. Phone: 0207 9286006, Website:

What to do if you have a complaint

If you are worried about a business or other premises that you think may not be meeting the required health and safety standards, or is carrying out ear piercing, tattooing etc without a licence, you should contact us so that we can carry out an investigation.

If you have a consumer complaint about goods or services you have purchased from a masseur or other special treatment provider, we would always advise that the first contact is made with the trader by you - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, if you are located in the UK, Citizens Advice will give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre . Please note that these matters usually can not be dealt with as part of the licence, although our licensing officers may be able to give help and advice.

Last Modified: 27/02/2023
For more information contact:

Torfaen Business Direct

Tel: 01633 648735


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