How much cost to open a beauty salon business?

Beauty salons can serve as an oasis from the real world, with elegant styling chairs, ambient music, trendy stylists and funky artwork on the walls. But while beauty salons help clients feel glamorous and pampered, business owners still need to put in time, money and effort to make these enterprises succeed. Before getting started in the beauty salon business, you'll want to research how much it costs to open a salon. Costs may vary depending on location and offerings, so take your specific circumstances into consideration to get the most accurate estimate.

Salon Type

Most salons need at least five or six chairs and stylists to survive in the beauty salon industry, according to That means about 1,000 square feet of business space. Equipping salons of that size can cost between £48 and £81 per square foot for smaller beauty enterprises; upscale salons in expensive neighbourhoods might require £195 per square foot to get things going. This can translate to around £6,500 for smaller beauty salon business and up to £65,000 for an upscale, full-service salon.

Getting Started

Beauty salons rarely begin churning profits during the first few months; you'll need that time to build up a clientele and smooth out operational kinks. Wise salon owners save up cash reserves to get through those first months without folding. Other initial start-up costs for beauty salon businesses include hairstyling supplies, mirrors, sound systems, and accounting software for processing and documenting purchases.


One of the largest costs for opening a beauty salon business is paying your employees, including hairstylists, hair washers and administration staff, including a cashier. Some salons compensate beauty staff members through a commissions system. Stylists may keep a certain percentage of their earnings from services rendered, paying commissions to you as the salon owner. Another option is to rent booths to hairstylists at your salon, charging rent for beauty professionals who take care of clients at their particular station. Other staffing costs including paying for an accountant, appointment maker and stylists-in-training.

Fees and Taxes

As part of opening a beauty salon, you'll need to apply for a business license and tax identification number. Liability insurance also contributes to the tab. Payroll taxes comprise about 7.6 per cent of sales, while rent and property taxes range from 2 per cent to 8 per cent.


It's crucial to invest some money in marketing and advertising when first opening your beauty salon business to get the word out. Flyers, coupons, business cards and radio spots help customers know to stop by your beauty enterprise to check out your offerings. Additional costs include website construction and professional photography.

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About the Author

Morgan Rush is a California journalist specializing in news, business writing, fitness and travel. He's written for numerous publications at the national, state and local level, including newspapers, magazines and websites. Rush holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California, San Diego.

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