How to Start a Salon in India

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The capital requirements of a salon, at least in the initial stages, are dependent upon a number of factors that may be enumerated as below:
  • Type of salon
  • Fixtures
  • Quality of salon
  • Improvements in leaseholds
  • Choice of salon design
  • Opening inventory
  • Utility and rent deposits
  • Equipment being used

Major areas of importance/requirements for a salon

Salon space

Space is the primary requirement in opening a business establishment like a salon. If the salon owner already has a large house that can make space for a salon then he or she can open it there. The amount of space required normally varies between 500 and 2000 square feet depending on the nature of operations.


The kind and the amount of professionals to be hired for keeping the business going depend on the extent and nature of services being provided by the salon. Under normal circumstances, a couple of stylists and a receptionist can be considered ideal to start with. Some other necessary people in this regard are shampoo technicians, facialists, barbers, make-up artists, nail technicians, and massage therapists.

Leasehold improvements

The salon owners may be required to perform improvements in areas leased or rented by them on the basis of their requirements. Important areas in these cases are interior layout, plumbing, and overall design.

Salon equipment

The equipment purchased by a salon owner depends on the services he or she is willing to offer. Some pieces of equipment that are primarily required to operate a salon efficiently are mentioned as below:
  • Wash basin
  • Supply trolleys
  • Styling chair
  • Manicure sets
  • Hair dryers
  • Aprons
Following are other equipments that come in handy when the salon looks to increase its operations:
  • Shampoo spray machines
  • Body care equipment
  • Facial bed
  • Skin care equipment
  • Hair streaming machines
If the salon owners are looking to market beauty products in the future they will be required to purchase related inventory as well. It is better to get in touch with suppliers of beauty salon equipment and find out if a deal can be procured. The owners can also look up the online auction sites where such equipment is often put up for sale.

Initial expenses

Some other areas where the salon owner can expect some expenditure are initial training, licensing and professional fees, and a working capital that will last at least a quarter. Following are some other crucial factors in this regard:
  • Cash register
  • Insurance
  • Merchant account fees for accepting credit cards
  • Professional fees for accountants, lawyers, etc
  • Business related documents
  • Signage expenses
  • Utilities
  • Initial advertising and marketing costs


Before starting a salon it is essential to undertake a certified program in cosmetology and learn the nuances of the trade. It is not absolutely mandatory to have a degree or diploma in order to start a salon but it always pays to have some knowledge in this regard before opening an establishment as such.

Business license

The salon owners also need to file for their business licenses with the concerned authorities at the state and the central level. They should also determine with the authorities if their name has already been registered or not. They should also ask for safety and occupational licenses to give their businesses the authentic look.


Funding is an important part of any business operation and the salon owner needs to determine the possible sources of his or her funding. If the owners are looking to get loans they will have to create a business plan in order to be presented to the lenders and get the necessary money.


The salon owners should open a business checking account, which will be used for paying the bills and making the other necessary payments. They should also avail business insurance to get coverage in case of property loss or accidents.

Special offers

It is a good idea to announce the salon opening with a party that should be done in the best possible way. The owners can also have special days when customers will be served for free or at lesser rates. Such offers could help increase the popularity of the salon.

How to keep the salon running in India?

Customer satisfaction

The first and, perhaps, most integral step in keeping the business operational is ensuring the clients are satisfied. For a salon the best way to become popular is word of mouth publicity. Once a client is satisfied with the results it helps in increasing the repeat value of the salon and builds up trust between both the parties that sustains their relationship in the future. If a client is happy then he or she will spread the good word among their family, relatives, and friends. However, it is necessary the salon maintains the factors or, even better, improves them so as to make sure that its initial success is no fluke.

Location of the Salon

Location is also a critical component in the success of a salon. It is ideal to choose an area that has a lot of offices and other commercial establishments as that, more often than not, ensures a steady stream of customers. It has often been seen that stylists who have a good reputation preceding them are able to operate at any place of their choosing. However, if that is not the case then the location needs to be selected carefully.

Hygiene and customer safety

The salons that have been successful have done so on the back of their focus on hygiene and safety of customers. The services also need to be professional and quick enough. It has often been seen that customers especially prefer salons that are always well kept.

The equipment and products being used should be of the best possible quality. There should be zero possibility of a customer being infected anyhow or else it can hamper the salon’s chances.

The equipment as well as whole established should be cleaned, sterilized, and disinfected as much as is possible on a regular basis. These processes should be repeated at the start and the end of the day as well at times when the flow is a little slow. Equipment like towels should be washed, and clean, free of odours.

Wide Range of services

It is always better to offer a wide range of services as people often prefer such establishments where they can get their hair, face, and nails done and also receive a quick massage on the shoulder and neck area. It is always advisable to have a single area of core expertise but what normally helps a salon in achieving outstanding success compared to its peers is its wide range of services.

Availability of Trained professionals

The salon owner should always try to employ professionals who are qualified and have some experience as inexperienced stylists can often lead to health related issues for the customers. Training is an absolute must in this industry as only experience will mean the presence of expertise but the absence of knowledge regarding the advantages and disadvantages of the procedure being followed. Ideally the owner is responsible for making sure that all the employees are properly trained.

The salon owner should also have a proper understanding of legal ramifications arising from a procedure that is done wrongly or an accident. For this they should consult their lawyers and insurance company on a consistent basis. It is also advisable that the employees and the owner should undertake regular lessons in order to better their knowledge of products, trends, and skill sets.

Payment of employees

The salon owner can also save on their expenses by making sure the employees are hired on contractual basis. They may be paid on a commission basis that will be determined with respect to the revenue generated in a specific period of time.

List of Top (Leading) Salons in India

Entrepreneurs interested in opening salons in India can also read up on the best chains operating in the country and get a good idea of their operations and implement them if possible:
  • Lakme Beauty Salons
  • LimeLite Unisex Salon
  • Jawed Habib Hair & Beauty Salon
  • Saks Hair & Beauty
  • Shahnaz Husain Spas and Salons
  • Kaya Skin Clinic
  • VLCC
  • Juice Lite
  • Naturals Unisex Salon and Spa
  • DermaRx
  • L’Oreal Professional Salons
  • Femina Plus Beauty Salon & Spa
  • Star & Sitara Salon
  • Jean Claude Biguine
  • Affinity Salon
  • Regis Salons
  • Green Trends Hair & Style Salon
  • Aroma Magic Salons
  • Strands Salon and Spa
  • Matrix Salons
  • YLG Salon & Spa
  • Lifestyle Hair & Beauty Salon
  • Looks Salon
Last Updated on May 18, 2015