Tax deductions

Unusual things you can claim as tax deductions for EOFY 2021

We are all trying to find a way to lower our tax bill without breaking the law, and some professions may claim things that others cannot.

Tax time has arrived again and we are all trying to find a way to reduce our tax bill without breaking the law.

All tax deductions are not the same: some are open to everyone, others to a privileged few. Maybe these unusual tax deductions could be offered to you – so let’s take a look at seven of the most unusual things that can be claimed in this tax time.


Believe it or not, moisturizers and rehydrating conditioners can be tax deductible. But you will need to be a cabin crew or pilot.

They are eligible for specialized rehydration treatments used to combat the abnormal drying conditions of working in a pressurized aircraft.

Sorry to everyone – work pressure is not the same as a pressured work environment, so rehydration treatments are not deductible for you.

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For jobs where the work is outdoors, sun protection, including sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses, are legitimate tax deductions. This applies to jobs like gardeners, road workers, builders, couriers and even journalists who work in the community.

However, if you use them for both business and pleasure, you can only claim the work-related part. Use your common sense here, too: claiming Gucci sunglasses or a shopping fascinator will sound the alarm bells at the tax office.

Hair and makeup

While it is important to look professional at work, personal care (e.g. nail polish, makeup or haircut) is NOT deductible – unless you are an entertainer, and even then, only in limited circumstances. This could be hairstyle costs for an actor to maintain a particular hairstyle necessary for the continuity of the character, or stage make-up for performers, musicians and dancers.

And that had to be for paid work – amateur theater won’t cut it.

Singing lessons

You don’t have to be the famous fat singer to claim a vocal coaching deduction, but you do have to be a professional singer.

This is for courses / lessons taken to maintain specific vocal skills or to acquire a new job-related skill.

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OK, that’s not unusual – it makes sense that work uniforms are tax deductible. What can be unusual is what this uniform looks like (think of the guy around the corner in the chicken costume doing business for a burger restaurant).

Some companies require staff to purchase their branded uniform, in which case the cost is fully tax deductible. In other cases, particular clothing which is an integral part of a uniform may be deducted.

Laundry charges for cleaning a work uniform can also be claimed.


Many people forget that donations to registered charities are tax deductible.

Have you received money to support your local MP, your desired candidate or your favorite political party? It’s also deductible – up to $ 1,500.

The caveat is that this should only be a financial donation – you cannot make a claim when you have received something in return, such as a badge, raffle ticket, or hospitality services. .

Consulting costs

A deduction open to all Australians – but one that few realize – is the financial advisory fee.

These expenses can be deducted from taxes for ongoing advisory services relating to income-generating assets, investments and your retirement pension. The same goes for the fees of a chartered accountant.

Additionally, you can also claim certain types of insurance, including professional liability and income protection.

Tips for claiming work-related tax deductions

• Keep receipts as proof of your expenses. Photos of receipts or ATO’s myDeductions app can help you overcome the problem of receipts fading over time.

• Claim the work-related portion of work-from-home costs, such as energy, telephone and internet, as well as mileage for business travel and work-related education expenses – especially this year with many people working from home.

• Don’t forget to claim work-related subscriptions – professional publications, software, etc. – and depreciation of home office furniture, laptops, etc.

• Don’t double the deduction by claiming a deduction for things your employer has or will reimburse you.

• If you are in a relationship, donate on behalf of the partner who will get the most tax benefits. Even if it’s not in your name, you’re still doing a good deed while minimizing your family’s tax bill.

Helen Baker is a Licensed Australian Financial Advisor and author of two books: On Your Own Two Feet – Stable Steps Towards Financial Independence For Women and Divorce On Your Own – Your Financial Guide to Surviving and Thriving.

Note that this is only general advice and you should seek advice specific to your situation.

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