How to Start a Lash Business?
Beauty trends change every year. If you are even a tiny bit into beauty and makeup, then you must know that in 2022, makeup is considered incomplete without false lashes.
False lashes have been in demand for a long time now. However, they rose to fame in recent years when people chose to wear them even with their everyday makeup. If you are an aspiring entrepreneur who is looking to get into the beauty industry but doesn’t know which niche to follow. Then, a lash business is your gateway to the beauty industry. Your passion for eyelashes and eyelash extensions will take you down the road to success. You can become a lash extension entrepreneur and earn good money as a small business owner. All you need is a love of beauty and an interest in marketing lashes.
What Is A Lash Business?
The eyelash business has a bright future ahead of it. It is estimated that by 2025, the global eyelash industry will reach $1.6 billion. This means a lot of potential customers are just waiting for you to get started. But before that, you need to know what a lash business is. A lash business points to the idea of applying false lashes or extensions to clients. However, this is done by professionals and trained technicians.
As with any other business, a lash business also has to have a proper business plan, marketing, customer service, sales, and other operations to become a success.
How Much Do You Need To Start Your Own Lash Business?
To get your lash business up and running, you will need to have a heavy amount in your bank. This amount can be anywhere from $30,000 to $60,000. You will need this sum of money for various business tasks such as purchasing equipment and supplies. Other than that, you might also need to hire certified technicians and professionals. Besides this, you will also need to look for and buy a suitable location to set up your salon.
How to Set Up Your Lash Business?
Now that you know the basics of a lash business, it is time you learn how to set one of your own. To get your lash business up and running, here are some steps that you need to follow:
1. Attain the Proper Certifications and Training
Getting eyelash treatment is an intimate service for many clients. This is why they prefer it when they have a licensed technician catering to their needs. Other than this, if you are properly trained and hold all the necessary qualifications for an eyelash technician, then you won’t have to hire other licensed technicians at the start of your lash business.
In addition to this, having a license means that you are legally compliant and exude a sense of professionalism. Every country and state has its requirements to attain a license. This is why it is better if you conduct proper research and go through proper channels to get hold of the license. To gain an esthetician license, you might have to pay a certain amount, take some courses, or pass a test.
2. Pick Out a Name for Your Business and Create a Brand
Every business has to have a name that sets it apart from the rest. The name should be unique enough to stick in the minds of people. After you have chosen a name for your lash business, it is wise to get it registered to create your brand name. This will ensure that your name is only yours and cannot be used by other people starting their businesses.
Other than the name, your lash business needs a logo to go with it. The logo sets the tone for your business. It should depict what your business is about.
3. Understand Your Audience
Before you start marketing your services, you need to understand to whom to market them. Narrow down the audience and see who your target customers are. Check their characteristics and demographics to see whom you should target with your marketing strategy.
4. Know Your Competition in Eyelash Business
The saying that goes ‘keep your friends close and your enemies closer’ stands true in business. In the lash business, you need to keep a close eye on your competition. By doing so, you will learn who their target audience is, how they market their services to them, and how you can improve your marketing strategy. By evaluating your competition closely, you will be better able to reflect on your business’s shortcomings.
5. Generate a Business Plan
Generating a business plan is an important step to ensure that your lash business has a cushion to fall back on. Even if you don’t have an investor, you need to have a business plan in place. This will make sure that you have your targets set out in clear print, define your goals, and list your business strategies.
A good business plan has an overview of your business, financial projections, details about your target market, the services your business is providing, and a marketing plan.
6. Pick Your Business Entity
You must sort out the legal matters before starting your lash business. Choose who will be held responsible for the brand. And, if you are willing to take responsibility for your business solely or you want to partner up with other people. All these matters are serious and need to be dealt with accordingly.
Before you launch your lash business, you should check out different business entities and see which suits you the best. There are many options to choose from, including but not limited to, sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership, or limited liability Company. Many lash businesses choose to opt for a limited liability company or a sole proprietorship.
7. Create a Business Bank Account for Your Lash Business
It is a wise move to create a business bank account for your lash business. This will ensure that your business funds remain separate from your personal finances. This way it will be easier to ensure that your lash business is adhering to the legal rules as well. Besides this, having a business bank account also offers a level of professionalism to your small business.
In addition to a business bank account, you can also consider applying for a business credit card account. This way you can buy necessary items for your lash business and keep the business running when times and profit influx are slow.
8. Take care of fees, permits, and licenses
To begin your lash business, you need proper licenses and permits associated with it. Therefore, you should research beforehand what permits and licenses you require to operate your lash business in the area. There is no definite answer as to what you might need as the requirements for permits and licenses vary by region. You might need to obtain a health care license and an aesthetic license. Or you might also be required to pay a fee.
9. Assign a Budget
When you are launching your start-up business, you need to understand that a lot of finances will need to go into it. Therefore, you must plan in advance and allocate a budget for everything associated with your lash business. They can be the cost of operating your salon, the salaries of the employees, and even buying the inventory. By planning ahead, you can estimate the total amount that you will need to make ends meet. And, if there is a need for more money, then you can arrange it in advance. A budget will also keep a check on the amount that you spend on your lash business.
10. Pick Out a Preferable Location
The most important question is how you will conduct your lash business. There are many options to choose from. If you have a spare room at your home, you can convert it into a studio. Another option is that you rent out a space and make it a salon. Or, if your budget is high, then you can buy a property in any posh area, and make it into a salon. With so many options to choose from, you can pick the one that is the most convenient for you.
These days the trend of mobilized business is on the rise as well. You can rent out a vehicle and offer mobile eyelash services to clients.
11. Seek Out a Good Business Insurance Plan
A lot of effort and finances go into creating a business. That is why it is only natural that you would want to protect it at all costs. As with everything in life, nothing is predictable in business. Your online business can be affected by hackers, a natural disaster can cause significant damage to your property, or even any of your staff can fall victim to injuries. To prepare for such unforeseeable circumstances, a good business insurance plan should be in place. This will help protect your investment. You can also choose between different insurance policies such as cyber insurance if you are also dealing with your clients online.
12. Invest in Top-Quality Equipment
Without the proper equipment, your lash business will not be able to reach its full potential. Therefore, you need to invest in top-quality equipment to create a professional working environment. You will need equipment such as relaxing chairs, a desk, appropriate tools, and a computer to keep records of your clients. Other than that, you will also need to invest in interior décor. You will have to buy suitable materials with which you can create a relaxed ambiance in your studio. It can be achieved by the addition of indoor plants, a diffuser, and a sound system. To get a more clear idea of what you need to buy for your lash company, here are a few ideas of what you should buy:
- Cozy chairs: While catering to your clients, you and your fellow eyelash technicians will be seated in a chair. So, it is important that you and the other estheticians are both relaxed during the process. This is why it is a wise decision to invest in high-quality chairs for your lash business.
- Appropriate lighting: Attaching eyelash extensions or treating eyelashes requires a lot of attention and focus. And, you can’t do it properly with improper lighting. Therefore, you should attach the right lighting so that you and your fellow lash technicians can pay attention to every single eyelash.
- Sterilization place and sink: You should have a sink and a place to sterilize your tools to maintain a clean and sterile lash studio.
- Reclining chair: To offer maximum comfort to your clients, you need to buy high-quality reclining chairs. This way, your customers will lay back while you work your magic on their eyelashes.
- Lash cart: A lash cart is an essential piece of equipment in the lash business. This is because this cart holds all the necessary items that you might need while tending to the customers’ lashes. This includes extensions, tools, and other materials.
- Sanitary covers and linen: Linen covers go over the reclining chairs to keep your clients clean and comfortable.
- Storage options: Your lash business needs to have a storage option. You can install shelves in your studio to store your eyelash equipment and other items. Shelves can help your business stay organized.
13. Settle on the Prices and Services for Your Lash Business
When you get to the point of setting a price for the services of your business, you have to choose a strategy. You can either set low initial costs for your services as a promotional offer. Or, you can compete with other eyelash businesses in your area. Therefore, it is important that you survey to find out what your local competitors are charging for similar services. This way you will have an idea of what your customers might expect you to charge.
14. Launch Your Lash Business Website and Make an Email ID
Having your own lash business website will add a sense of professionalism to your business. It will give your potential clients a chance to explore your business before giving your services a chance. You can also provide your clients with the option to book their appointments in advance, or research more about the techniques you use to cater to your clients, and the credentials of the staff you have on board.
Other than this, you should also have a business email address so that people can reach out to you in case of any inquiry related to your lash business. If you have little to no experience in website design, it is best that you seek the services of professional website designers. They will be better able to link your brand with your website domain.
15. Pick a Booking method
You need to have a proper booking system in place to keep track of your customers. Now, it is not that easy for businesses to book their appointments on paper. With such high competition, you need to invest in a proper booking system to ensure that your business is always on top of everything.
There are many booking software in the market that will gel in well with your business needs. You can check out Fresha, Boulevard, or Gloss Genius to get an idea.
16. Acquire Point Of Sale Software
For your business to run smoothly, you also need to have a proper payment method system set up. This way, you will be able to accept payments in different forms from your clients, both online and in person. Good Point-of-sale software will also keep track of your business sales for you.
Several point-of-sale software is available in the market for small businesses to choose from. Some software examples include Shopify POS, Revel Systems, and Quickbooks.
17. Think about Marketing Strategies and Building a Customer Base
Now that you have set up your business, the next step is to attract customers. To do that, you need to employ different marketing tactics to compel people to give your business a chance.
For this, you don’t have to go down the old route of advertising in a newspaper or a magazine. Now, times have changed. Make use of social media to engage with potential clients with your business’s social media account. You should create social media accounts for your business on different social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. This way you can inform people about your ongoing business activity, and promotional offers, and answer their queries.
Other than this, you can also create posts related to eyelashes that can be both informational and promotional at the same time. This will help you engage with like-minded people who might turn into your clients. You can also make use of TikTok where you demonstrate placing eyelash extensions on a customer, with their consent, of course. You can also post your pictures on your social media accounts with your done lashes to give a shout-out to your brand.
18. Time to Get The Show On The Road
Now that you have acquired all the certifications, taken all the legal things into account, purchased the necessary equipment, dolled up the place, and marketed your services to people, it is time to launch your lash business.
19. Broaden Your Lash Services
When your business has stabilized and is now running like a well-oiled machine, you should think about expanding your services. You can create your own brand of eyelashes, or you can offer courses to those interested in learning the art. The possibilities are immense so you can pick any idea and run with it.
20. Own the Title of a Successful Business Owner
If your business has started to flourish and is functioning as you planned, you should take a deep breath and relax. However, you should not stay comfortable for long. Instead, work hard to keep your business up and running. Remember, without hard work and dedication, it won’t take long for your lash business to crumble down.
Waqar Hussain is the founder of The Business Goals. He writes about entrepreneurial strategies and is an SEO consultant by profession. He is a B.Com, GDM, and an MBA from the Australian Institute of Business.