Taliban’s ban on beauty salons harms women’s economic empowerment and resilience

The head of UNAMA, Roza Otunbayeva, has expressed concern over the Taliban’s ban on women’s beauty salons, stating that it will have a negative impact on resilience, poverty reduction, and economic recovery in Afghanistan.

According to Reuters, Otunbayeva said the ban will disproportionately impact female entrepreneurs in Afghanistan.

Beauty salon owners in Kabul have also expressed concerns about the Taliban’s ban on their businesses. Many of these women are the breadwinners of their families, and the ban has left them without a source of income.

Marzia Reyazee, a beauty salon owner in Kabul, told Reuters that she had been supporting herself and her family for the past eight years with the income from her business, which she had established with an initial investment of over $18,000.

“We can’t work here, we can’t feed our family, we need to work,” she said.

In addition to offering the usual services, the beauty salons provide many women with a safe, female-only space where they can meet outside their homes and without a male chaperone.

The Taliban’s ban on beauty salons is the latest in a series of restrictions imposed on women and girls in Afghanistan since they took control of the country two years ago.

According to Reuters, the ban is expected to result in the loss of over 60,000 jobs for women and the closure of 12,000 beauty businesses, putting further strain on an economy already in crisis.