Starting a beauty business can be a lucrative and fulfilling endeavor, but it requires a few steps.
Here are the 10 steps you can take to get started on building your very own beauty business.
10 Steps to Launching a New Beauty Business
1. Choose Your Type of Beauty Business
The first step in launching a beauty business is to identify the type of beauty business you want to launch. You might choose from the following types, among others:
- A makeup artist business that offers services for special events.
- A beauty salon that provides hair styling, nail care, and other services.
- A beauty spa that offers salon services, plus massages, facials, and body treatments.
- A mobile beauty business that provides services to customers in their homes or workplaces.
2. Name Your Beauty Business
Give your beauty business an identity so people will think of it as a well-known and respected brand. You can take the name of your beauty business from your industry, focus on a geographical location, or use your own name among other options.
The main goal for naming your beauty business is to make it sound appealing and trustworthy so customers will be more likely to use your services.
3. Determine Your Beauty Business Model
There are several possible types of business models for a beauty business including:
- A brick-and-mortar business with a physical location where customers visit
- An online beauty business that delivers products or services remotely
- A mobile beauty business that takes services to customers in their homes or workplaces.
- A franchised beauty business that brings an established brand to a new location.
No matter which model you choose, make sure that it aligns with your business goals and the products and services you offer.
4. Choose a Legal Form for Your Business
By incorporating your beauty business, you will limit your liability. You can incorporate as a Limited Liability Company (LLC), a C Corporation (C-Corp), or an S Corporation (S-Corp). Or you can operate as a sole proprietorship.
The business structure you choose for your beauty business will determine the amount of taxes you pay and which state or federal tax forms you need to file.
Read our article comparing the most common beauty business structures.
5. Write a Beauty Business Plan
All beauty business owners should develop a business plan.
A business plan is a document that outlines the goals, strategies, and operations of a business. It can be used to secure funding from investors or lenders, as well as to guide the day-to-day operations of the business. The business plan should include information on the company’s products or services, market analysis, financial projections, and management team among other things.
When developing your beauty business plan and strategy, you should think about the following questions your customers might have:
- What services does your beauty business offer?
- What are your rates for services?
- Do you have a retail location?
- What hours do you operate?
- How do I make an appointment?
- Do you offer walk-in appointments?
- Will I be charged for a consultation?
- Is there a cancellation policy?
- Do you offer discounts for military or seniors?
- What brands of products do you carry/use in your treatments?
- Do you offer package deals/discounts if I book multiple services?
- What methods of payment do you accept?
Read our article about how to write a beauty business plan.
6. Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses
There may be required licenses and permits you need to obtain before launching your beauty business.
For example, if you will be providing haircuts, styling, dyeing, or other services that alter the appearance of a client’s hair, you will need to obtain a cosmetology license in the state where your business is located.
Most states require licensure for beauty professionals, such as cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, and barbers. In some states, cosmetologists may need to complete additional training to be licensed to perform certain services, such as hair coloring.
You must also register your beauty business as a legal entity with the state where you plan to do business. You can simply file an online form through your Secretary of State website.
Registering with the federal government is also essential so you can properly pay taxes for your business. You will also need an Employer Identification Number (EIN), which you can apply for at the IRS website, if you plan to hire employees.
Read our article about obtaining the proper beauty business licenses.
7. Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed
In developing your beauty business plan, you will figure out how much funding you need to start and grow your business.
If you have your own funds to invest in your beauty business, you may consider taking advantage of that. In addition to your personal funds, other forms of potential funding for your beauty business include traditional bank loans, SBA loans, credit cards, angel investors and family and friends.
Read our article about the costs associated with starting a beauty business to help you determine if funding is needed.
Read our article about how to fund your beauty business.
8. Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently
When you start your beauty business, it’s essential to have the right technology in place to maximize efficiency. You definitely need a computer with Internet access, and accounting software for tracking expenses and revenues.
You may also want to invest in a point-of-sale (POS) system to streamline transactions and track inventory. A POS system can also be used to manage appointments, send appointment reminders, and track customer loyalty programs.
9. Market Your Beauty Business to Potential Customers
Before you start selling your products and services, you have to let the world know you exist. The first step is to create a website so people can learn more about your products and services and how they benefit them.
After you launch your website, start promoting it through social media channels like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Also consider networking with other people in the beauty industry through social media and blogs so they can help share your business.
You also need to start gathering the materials needed to execute on your promotions strategy, which is your strategy for attracting new customers. Beauty businesses should consider the following promotional strategies for which you should start getting prepared:
- Host special events, such as makeup workshops, for potential customers.
- Give out free product samples to attract new customers.
- Sell products through online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay.
- Advertise in beauty-related magazines and online publications.
- Offer package deals/discounts if customers book multiple services.
- Make a promotional video about your business and post it on YouTube.
- Sponsor a local charity event or participate in a charity walk/run.
- Give presentations about your business at local business meetups and networking events.
- Provide gift certificates that can be used for services or products.
- Participate in trade shows and other industry events to attract new customers.
Read our article about how to market your beauty business for more tips.
10. Get New Customers & Grow Your Business
When you promote your products and services, you’ll start to get interest from potential customers.
Make sure you’re ready to serve these customers. Also, be sure to establish systems to ensure consistency and reduce costs. And be sure to find and train the right people to help you grow your beauty business.
Read our article about how to effectively grow your beauty business to learn more.
Starting a Beauty Business FAQs
Why Start a Beauty Business?
The beauty industry is a great option for entrepreneurs because it’s relatively easy to get started and there are many opportunities for growth. In addition, the industry is recession-resistant, which means that people will still spend money on beauty products and services even when the economy is struggling.
What is Needed to Start a Successful Beauty Business?
To start a successful beauty business, you need a good business plan, the right funding, technology and software, marketing materials, and a promotional strategy. You also need to find and train the right people to help you grow your business.
How Can I Start a Beauty Business From Home?
You can start a beauty business from home by setting up a small studio in your home. You’ll need to get the right technology and software in place, create marketing materials, and develop a promotional strategy.
How Can I Market a Beauty Business Online?
There are a number of ways to market a beauty business online. You can start by creating a website and promoting it through social media channels like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. You can also consider networking with other people in the beauty industry through social media and blogs so they can help share your business. You can also sell products through online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay, and advertise in beauty-related magazines and online publications.
What are Some Tips for Starting a Beauty Business?
Some tips for starting a beauty business include:
- Research the market – understand the industry and what it takes to be successful
- Create a business plan – this will help map out your goals and strategies
- Find the right funding – you’ll need money to get started and sustain your business
- Get the right technology and software – this will help make your business efficient
- Create marketing materials – these will promote your business to potential customers
- Develop a promotional strategy – attract new customers and grow your business
- Find and train the right people – you’ll need skilled employees to help grow your business
Where Can I Find a Simple Checklist for Starting a Beauty Business?
A simple checklist to use when starting a beauty business is as follows:
- Choose Your Type of Beauty Firm: This should be based on what you are best at and how much experience you have. Remember to keep your interests, skills, and experience in mind at all times.
- Name Your Beauty Business: This should be done with care, as your brand is important for attracting the right customers. A simple, memorable name will go a long way.
- Choose a Legal Form for Your Business: Whether you choose to become a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, corporation or another option will depend on your business. Ensure that you are aware of all the implications of each type.
- Determine Your Beauty Business Model: Determine how your business will make money. Will you sell products, services, or a combination of both?
- Write a Beauty Business Plan: Your business plan will also help you determine what your start-up costs will be and will provide a roadmap with which you can launch and grow.
- Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses: In most locations you will be required to apply for a business license and/or permits before you can begin operations.
- Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed: You will need to know how much money you have to spend on all of your business-related expenses before opening any doors. If needed, apply for a small business loan or other funding options.
- Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently: You need to have the right tools in place to succeed. Implement software that will help you manage your time, contacts, and business operations in general.
- Market Your Beauty Business to Potential Customers: A solid marketing plan will be crucial to your success. It should focus on attracting the right customers so that you can provide them with the products and services they truly need.
- Get Customers & Grow Your Business: Once you have a solid marketing plan, it's time to actively pursue and secure those who could benefit the most from your products and services.
Starting a beauty business can be a rewarding and profitable venture, but it’s important to plan ahead before taking the plunge. By following these simple tips, you’ll be on your way to a successful beauty business in no time.