A nail salon business can be very lucrative quite simply because manicures and pedicures are essential services that never go out of style. Furthermore, this is a service that is “evergreen” meaning that it is easy to convince a customer to come to back to your salon to get their fingernails and toenails groomed again and again.
This is because nails will never stop growing and they will always need trimming.
One of the benefits of this type of business is that it really does stand the test of changing economic times and it is relatively inexpensive to set up. Furthermore once you have set up the basic business you can then expand your menu of services to include other things besides manicures and pedicures.
Common expansions include body treatments like waxing, massaging, ear piercing and hair removal.
Nail salons are not generally licensed and anybody can give someone else a manicure or pedicure. However you will be considered to be more upscale if you hire staff that has a beautician or cosmetician license. You can hire salaried staff or rent your “chairs and sinks” to freelancers.
Most operational spaces within a nail salon are between thirty and fifty square feet in size.
Some states regulate nail salons with a Department of Cosmetology and some regulate it with the Health Department. Keep in mind that if you are in a regulated state you will have to purchase a license to operate a nail salon in that state.
How much paperwork you are going to end up doing really is going to depend on where In the United States you are planning on opening nail salon.
State Licensing Requirements
Before you begin writing a business plan or conceptualizing anything about nail salon business you need to look on the internet or visit your local Chamber of Commerce or government office out what is required of you legally.
Usually all you need is a regular business license. Many states call the license required for a nail salon a salon license. Your salon must meet its city zoning requirements as well as the location standards outlined by the local cosmetology commission.
It may be that you are not going to be able to get a license unless your space meets certain space requirements. For instance, the Texas Cosmetology Commission requires the salon to hiver 150 feet for the first licensee (nail technician) and an additional 30 square feet for other practitioners. These licenses usually cost about $100.
In some states you might be subject to a check from the department of health. In other states your nail technicians may be required to post certification certificates that demonstrate expertise or training or even a posted beauty school or high school degree.
The point is that the rules and regulations really do vary widely from state to state.
For instance, in the state of Texas you cannot operate a salon unless you first secure a state-used operator license.
You must also have a high school diploma or its equivalent and you must also have completed at least 1,500 hours of beauty school training in a state-approved school y or 1,000 hours of beauty school education and 500 hours in a vocational cosmetology program.
As you can see the requirements which are different in each area, real can be quite strict or finicky.
You usually have to pay for a basic operator license fee which in most states is below $100 and usually in the area of $50.
If you are hiring beauty specialists or offering additional services you might also have to acquire other licenses to perform laser services, hair removal services or barber or spa services.
If you set up your business so that you are renting booths to nail technicians or other beauty specialists then you might also have to acquire different licenses that vary in price from $25 to $500.
Special Licensing Considerations
If you open a nail salon most states provide you with guidelines from their cosmetology commission. This is usually a guide or book that provides you with in-depth details about how you can stay within the law.
Most state commissions will also conduct regular inspections of your salon to make sure you are compliant.
Be Sure to Write a Business Plan
To get the business going you need proof of local residency, a business location, and investment capital and liquor suppliers.
To get all of this going you first need to write a business plan. This does double duty as a guide as to how you will conduct the business as well as a document you can also show investors.
In your business plan you also need to figure out your major expenses including the salary you and your employees will be living on, your direct costs and your overhead.
Direct costs include your inventory and your overhead is the cost of utilities, office furniture and equipment. On average you need about $15,000 to open a tattoo studio.
Decide on a Potential Location for a Business
In choosing a location for your nail salon, choose a place that is in a commercial area that is high in pedestrian and vehicular traffic. It is also a good idea to choose a youthful, hip neighborhood with a bit of culture, fashion and cafe society in evidence. There will increase your chances of attracting walk-in customers to your nail salon.
Be Sure to Register Your Business
Your nail salon does not really exist unless it is registered first. This makes you a legally recognized company and also allows you to obtain a Federal Employer Identification Number so you can tax the wages of your employees. Most states will also allow you to register your business directly.
Hiring Nail Technicians
A nails technician shapes and beautifies your nails… They can work on either toenails or fingernails, but most nail technicians work on both. Providing manicures and pedicures is the main focus of the job.
You do not have to hire technicians with cosmetician or beautician certificates but in some states you might be required to post the training.
Although the average salary of a nail technician is generally $10 per hour, this range varies depending on experience. For example, nail technicians who have over ten years of experience, may earn up to $25 per hour.
Launching Your Store
Generally, listing your nail salon on both online and offline in your local White Pages and Yellow Pages are recommended.)
You can also also advertise with a witty website that features all of your information including a map of where you are and the services you offer. It is also a good idea to put up pictures of any specialty manicures that you do.
Signage on the exterior of the store can also help you launch your store as most nail salon business is walk in. You can also advertise in local newspapers and on the local radio.
If allowed you can also advertise discounts and special deals in your store windows as well as throw promotions such in-store nail tip fashion contests.
What is in the store window is often very important especially if you are providing fake nails or nail tips. Make your window as creative as possible and be sure to display different nail designs.
Remember, customers buy on the basis of the benefits such as your convenient location, free parking or the fact that you offer a variety of nail treatments or designs or that you might offer loyalty programs and “Two for One Manicure and Pedicure” deals.
Be sure to include information about how you will promote and target your store in your business so that investors understand where your customers will come from and why your business will always make a profit.