Unit of competency details

SIHHHDS303A - Design and apply short to medium length hair design finishes (Release 2)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
2 (this release)Current 19/Aug/2013
(View details for release 1) Replaced20/Jul/2011

Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to SHBHDES003 - Create finished hair designsEquivalent • Unit updated to meet the Standards for Training Packages.• Title simplified. 30/Mar/2016
Supersedes and is equivalent to WRHHD303A - Design and apply short to medium-length hair design finishesUpdated and equivalent to WRHHD303A Previously contained the following prerequisites: • WRHCS201A Prepare clients for salon services 19/Jul/2011

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110303 Hairdressing 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110303 Hairdressing 18/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

The release details of this endorsed unit of competency are set out in the table below. The latest information is at the top.




Editorial corrections. Competency field added.


Initial release.

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to create classic and current short to medium length hair design finishes on a range of clients.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to hairdressers in salon environments, who design and apply finished classic and current hair designs on short to medium-length hair.

A person undertaking this role applies discretion and judgement and accepts responsibility for outcomes of own work.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.



Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Not applicable.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

1. Analyse client characteristics.

1.1. Establish natural hair type , texture , growth patterns , fall and movement  by physical and visual examination.

1.2. Examine and analyse facial features and bone structure.

2. Consult with client and confirm a finished look.

2.1. Apply the elements and principles of design  to complement client facial features and bone structure and envisage alternative hair designs.

2.2. Discuss and describe suitable looks and establish client  expectations using visual examples  as necessary.

2.3. Discuss and confirm a preferred hair design concept with client.

3. Apply relevant techniques to create a finished design.

3.1. Select and apply styling products , according to hair type and predetermined design, following product instructions.

3.2. Select and apply relevant styling tools and techniques  to achieve the overall finished design.

3.3. Ensure client comfort and safety during the process, according to salon procedures .

3.4. Select and apply finishing tools and techniques  to achieve the predetermined design.

3.5. Confirm client satisfaction and adjust hair design finish where required.

3.6. Advise on hair design maintenance and recommend relevant home hair care products .

3.7. Complete the hair design service within designated workplace timeframes.

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication skills to:
  • interact with clients
  • consult with clients during pre-service analysis
  • check client comfort during the hair design finishing process
  • confirm client satisfaction with hair design results
  • design skills to:
  • conduct hair design analysis
  • apply the elements and principles design to design finished looks
  • technical skills to safely apply a wide range of finishing products tools and techniques to create finished hair designs
  • numeracy skills to manage the completion of hair design services within salon timeframes

Required knowledge 

  • elements and principles of design as they are applied to hair design
  • effects of humidity on temporary design finishes
  • workplace styling products range

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • analysing and identifying the elements of hair designs, and alternative techniques that may be applied to achieve those designs
  • applying a range of classic and current hair designs on short to medium length hair
  • ensuring client comfort and safety throughout the service
  • following salon procedures relevant to the service
  • ability to complete short to medium finished designs within designated workplace timeframes.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure access to:

  • a salon or a simulated salon environment that includes a range of work situations such as client interruptions and involvement in other related activities normally expected in the salon
  • an adjustable client chair
  • a clean client gown or wrap
  • a supply of clean towels
  • hair design equipment, including:
  • combs
  • brushes
  • rollers
  • clips
  • blow dryer
  • heat diffuser
  • heat lamps
  • hair dryer
  • a range of clients with short to medium length hair for hair design services
  • styling products
  • relevant documentation, including:
  • product and equipment instructions and safety data sheets
  • salon procedures

For further guidance on the use of an appropriate simulated environment, refer to the Assessment Guidelines in this Training Package.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • direct observation of the learner:
  • analysing characteristics and consulting with clients to negotiate a planned design outcome
  • applying styling products, tools and equipment to achieve a range of designs on short to medium length hair
  • review of portfolios of evidence and third-party reports of on-the-job performance.

Guidance information for assessment 

A unit of competency describes an individual skill but people rarely perform one skill at a time. Many skills are combined on a day-to-day basis in the workplace as part of work processes. This does not mean that each skill described by a unit of competency is pre-requisite to another they are related skills.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, salon and job role is recommended, for example:

  • SIHHCCS302A Perform a full client consultation
  • SIRXCOM001A Communicate in the workplace
  • SIRXSLS002A Advise on products and services

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Natural hair type  may include:

  • European
  • African
  • Asian.

Texture  may include:

  • coarse
  • medium
  • fine.

Growth patterns  may include:

  • crown area
  • hairline
  • neckline
  • cowlicks (whorls).

Fall and movement  may include:

  • straight
  • wavy
  • natural curl
  • chemical curl or waves.

Facial features and bone structure  may include:

  • square
  • round
  • oval
  • combination of shapes
  • unusual facial shapes.

Elements and principles of design  may include:

  • elements, such as:
  • straight or curved lines
  • shape
  • direction
  • size
  • texture
  • colour
  • principles, such as:
  • balance
  • graduation
  • repetition
  • contrast
  • harmony
  • dominance
  • unity.

Client  may include:

  • women
  • men
  • children
  • people from a range of social, cultural or ethnic backgrounds and with a range of physical and mental abilities.

Visual examples  may include:

  • magazine shots
  • photographs
  • quick sketches or simple line drawings
  • hair design text books.

Styling products  may include:

  • setting lotions
  • gels
  • glazes
  • mousses
  • waxes
  • sprays.

Styling tools and techniques  may include:

  • tools, including:
  • combs
  • brushes
  • clips
  • rollers
  • blow dryers
  • heat diffusers
  • drying lamps
  • techniques, including:
  • blow drying
  • blow waving
  • moulding
  • water waving
  • roller placement
  • pin curling
  • lamp drying
  • heat diffusers.

Salon procedures  may include:

  • procedures that comply with state or territory and local government health regulations relevant to the service
  • occupational health and safety
  • environmental protection practices, such as:
  • waste minimisation
  • waste disposal.

Finishing tools and techniques  may include:

  • tools:
  • combs
  • brushes
  • tongs
  • straightening irons
  • techniques:
  • brushing
  • dry moulding
  • placing
  • backcombing
  • smoothing.

Home hair care products  may include:

  • shampoos
  • conditioners
  • styling aids, such as:
  • mousses
  • lotions
  • gels
  • hair sprays
  • texturising products.

Unit Sector(s)


Competency Field

Hair Design

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