The beauty business is one industry that always manages to see growth and remain strong during varied economic climates. Opening a beauty business takes a lot of groundwork, but success is inevitable if you follow the right steps.
Choose a Business Model
A beauty business can be opened from scratch, purchased as a franchise, or an established salon can be bought. Depending on the business model you choose, the opening and continuing costs will vary. Salons can hire stylists on commission or using the chair-rental method. Operating on commission comes with the responsibility of paying employee-related expenses. Operating on chair rentals means working with stylists as independent contractors who are responsible for their own insurance. You can operate a hybrid salon using both methods, but avoid opening under one model and switching to the other later on.
Understand All Legal Requirements
Salons must operate following several legal requirements. Opening a salon requires a business operation license, an Employee Identification Number (EIN), a certificate of occupancy, a retail license, a building permit, a fire department permit, sanitation, and a state cosmetology license. Visit your state and local municipality websites for a full list of state laws and regulations. These will vary based on where the salon is located and what kind of salon you are operating.
Talk to Distributors
You will need to shop around for affordable, reliable distributors to find the products you will need to run your salon. Look for local, wholesale, or national distributors with local agents to purchase chairs, mirrors, washing and drying stations, shampoo and conditioner, pins, and brushes. Work with a wholesale distributor for larger items, and buy smaller items directly from a manufacturer or a local distributor.
Keller International is one of the largest suppliers of barber and salon equipment in the United States. Their mission is to bring affordable and quality beauty equipment to beauty businesses of all sizes, from mom and pop shops to national franchises. Keller International carries a wide range of styles to fit any salon theme. Their Starlet Hollywood LED full-length floor mirror with lights has precise lighting that is perfect for a glamourous salon.
Make Your Salon Stand Out
The beauty business is competitive and salons can be found on nearly every corner. The key to standing out is to highlight what makes your salon unique. Maybe you offer specialized services, create customized experiences, or use all-natural products. Having a unique offering and a niche market protects your salon from failing and allows you to develop lasting customer relationships with clients.
Get to know your local market and research the products and services offered at competitor salons. Identify what your niche market is looking for and determine if there is a missing need that your salon can meet. A fun service to offer female clientele is eyelash extensions. Glamnetic is changing the beauty routine by making mink magnetic eyelashes that are effortless to apply. All of their false eyelashes are made of high-quality materials such as mink, synthetic, and vegan. Simply line the eyes with Glamnetics magnetic eyeliner, cut the lashes to fit the eye, and apply the magnetized lash strip on top of the liner. Remove the magnetic eyeliner with coconut or olive oil and place the mink eyelashes into their magnetized tray to retain their shape.
Partnerships and Trade Organizations Are Important
Trade and professional organizations are valuable resources for salons. Trade groups like the Professional Beauty Association, Association of Cosmetology Salon Professionals, Salon & Spa Professional Association, International SalonSpa Business Network provide useful industry content for salon owners. These organizations provide non-compete forms, HR manuals, marketing ideas, and an email listserv of salon owners and managers.