How Much Do Salon Owners Make?

How much do salon owners make? In a short answer – the pay can pretty high. However, it really depends on several factors. Here’s all you need to know.

Running your own small business seems like a great idea, doesn’t it? If you have an affinity for beautification and beautiful nails, chances are that you’ve probably dreamed of running your own little nail salon.

Doing what you like, being your own boss, and make loads of money sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? But in reality, it’s not that simple. To be your own boss, and especially the boss of a nail salon, there are quite a few things that you need to learn.

After so much hard work, how much money do you actually make? That’s not an easy question to answer, as there are so many factors that need to be taken into consideration. Read on to find out whether you’ll get rich running a nail salon.

What’s the Salary?

Without further ado, an average nail salon owner can make between $40,000 and $75,000 per year, but this depends on a large number of factors. This number can be so much more if you’re running your business well and according to a well laid-out business plan.

That being said, if you’re interested in starting your own nail salon business, why don’t you take a look at what it takes to get that $40-$75K per year?

How to Run a Salon

If you’re dreaming of running a nail salon, first you need to develop quite a few skills and learn some new things. Earning so much money doesn’t come easy, but once you get there it will feel great knowing that you’ve made it all on your own.

A solid business plan that covers different aspects of the business is the essence of such profitability. First off, we suggest going to work at another nail salon, so that you can learn from there. See how things run, learn a few tricks, and slowly plan out how you’re going to get your own little empire going.

Different Business Areas

In order to make $75K or more a year, you will need to learn the basics about a nail salon’s daily operations, business administration, and even human resources.

Operative things that you need to handle include managing the inventory, licenses, and insurance regulations. You need to source all the supplies while juggling an effective customer service and satisfaction policy.

The administrative and financial aspect is probably not very fun, unless you’re raking in so many sales that you can’t wait to count them every night. In any event, you will need to learn the ropes about funding, sales projections, receipts, invoices, payment system, payroll systems, and so on.

Another area that you need to master is human resources. This mean knowing everything there is to know about hiring, training, and firing your staff.

How to Make Money?

Even though $75k a year sounds nice, you also need to be aware of what you’re going to offer to your customers in order to make money; you have to make quite a few adjustments to make that much money.

First of all, you have to adjust to your neighborhood and the needs of people who live there. If your prices are too steep for the area, you will get close to zero customers. Then again, if your nail salon is in the middle of a fancy neighborhood and your prices are too low, people may think that you’re a cut-rate service and avoid your salon. Even if that doesn’t happen, you may not be able to recoup the costs of running a nail salon in a high cost-of-living area if your prices are too low.

Another good idea is to offer various vanity treatments and packages. Either way, you should be aware of the common price range for nail salon services, so that you can calculate your earnings much easier.

Pedicures should be between $25 and $75, while manicure ranges from $15 to $50. Working with gel, and polishing should be priced between $20 and $75, removal goes for $5 to $15, while nail repairs should range from $3 to $30. A full set of services should be somewhere between $45 and $80. If you’re planning on including gel powder full sets, you should charge anywhere from $30 to $60 for such services.

Other profitable services that you might want to include in your offering are manicure/pedicure combos which may range from $40 to $150; acrylic nail fills which can cost between $18 and $50; and acrylic full sets which can be anywhere between $30 and $100.

The price range for acrylic nail removal service is commonly $10 to $30, while you can also accompany that with silk nails for $10 to $40.

Selling Products

Another avenue of making money is to sell a wide range of products, as they can greatly boost your revenue.

Complementary items that you can sell in your nail you can include nail polishes, hand creams, lotions, travel nail care kits, and nail filing kits.

Selling sandals can also be another neat trick to get more revenue, as you are likely to run into a large number of women who forgot to bring any open-toe shoes. You can offer to sell them cheap and sweet sandals instead of giving out generic foam slippers.

Sell Yourself in Style

Last but not least, if you want to make $75,000 or more from running a nail salon, you should invest quite a lot in styling, interior design, and marketing.

You need a catchy name and a good logo and visual identity for your nail salon brand. Also, if you wish to draw as many customers as possible, the place needs to look neat and clean.

Marketing and promotions are a huge factor here, both offline and online. Creating and managing a community on social networks such as Instagram and Facebook can generate quite an income boost if you target the right people the right way.


As you can see, being a nail salon owner can be real nice and it can get you quite a lot of cash. But no one said it is easy, and it takes a lot of hard work, plenty of patience, and a bit of luck. With the right plan in your hand, you could be making $75,000 or more per year.

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