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Nail Polish | Tax Deduction

July 16, 2023

Can I claim my Nail Polish as a tax deduction?

Nail polish Tax Deduction

With most jobs, we all want to be well presented.  We get the hair cut, buy some nice clothes and shoes, put on the war paint and do our best to look great.  All those things we buy just so we can look the part within the organisation. 

So do I get a tax deduction for all those costs?

The ATO is quite strict when it comes to claims for personal grooming expenses and in most cases you'll find that these types of costs just aren't deductible.  The abstract rational for this is pretty much entrenched in Tax Case Law (which deals with interpreting our statutes).  That rational is that as "humans" there are certain life costs that you will incur just to live in the modern world regardless of whether you work or not.  So you need a hair cut just to conform to community standards and you need to dress appropriately to enjoy life's offerings.

So there are a whole bucket of things that fall into this "life cost" area.  Like the hair cut, going out clothes, street clothes, shoes, eye glasses, dental, doctor etc etc etc.

It's only when those things are NOT in this normal "life cost" area that a Tax Deduction could be in the making.

For instance, claiming your nail polish would be a hard NO, unless you are a performance artist that incurs costs for unusual looks or excessive consumption beyond the normal life cost.  

There are some instances where you can claim personal grooming expenses as a tax deduction in certain occupations.

For example, if you work as a flight attendant, make up artist or even in the adult industry you can claim certain personal grooming expenses as a tax deduction.

If you are a worker in a role where personal grooming products are considered essential work-related equipment, you should save your receipts carefully or even better, use our handy App 'Deduction Grabber' so that you have the expenses recorded for the end of the year.

Examples of occupations where personal grooming is potentially a tax deduction includes: TV personalties, Flight attendants, hostesses and the like.  Where clearly those people incur a cost way beyond the grooming requirements of a normal life.  Keep your documentation so the question can be asked at year end.

Until next time....

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