The beauty industry is big business, and it’s growing every year. At present, the global beauty market is worth around $532 billion, so it makes sense if you’re thinking about hopping aboard this trend and carving out a piece of the market.
What’s interesting about the beauty market is that it is always changing and evolving. This means that you need to be agile and adaptive if you want to be able to make the most of the beauty landscape.
With this in mind, we’re looking at 25 beauty business ideas that you could start today that are guaranteed to be profitable. Obviously, these business ideas would need to be executed with skill and expertise, but they are all niches that are growing fast. Read on to get some inspiration for your next beauty business venture.
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Demand for beauty on demand is growing. This niche will appeal to those people that don’t have time to go to the salon, but don’t want to venture into DIY products at home. This will also appeal to those who might have had to tighten their belts due to the cost of living crisis, but don’t want to give up their beauty treatments entirely.
The best part about offering mobile beauty services is that your overheads will be low. You don’t have to pay for premises, lights, heating, decor or anything like that. You simply need mobile equipment and a reputation for excellent work. You could offer anything from hair and nails to massage and spray tans.
Consumers are paying more attention to what they put on their bodies, and there has been an increase in education around what is contained in popular products. Consumers are no longer swayed by marketing speak and they know how to read an ingredients label to understand if a product will work for them.
Organic and natural beauty products will always be popular, but social media is currently making it easier for small startups to compete with the big boys. Smaller companies are able to put their products in front of large audiences thanks to the rise of the micro-influencer. These might not have the large-scale following of some of the mega influencers, but they have a much more engaged following.
Always dreamed of opening your own salon? Once you know you’ve hit a winning formula, it’s time to expand and open up your franchise. If you have a popular brand, you can be confident others will want to cash in on the name. By franchising, you can make the most of multiple locations without being personally responsible for the day-to-day running.
Running a franchise certainly isn’t easy, and you’ll need to have a specific model your franchisees need to follow in order to keep the brand cohesive. The increased brand recognition will allow you to enjoy continued expansion throughout the country.
It’s not only women who are interested in taking care of themselves. Men are also indulging in self-care and taking their appearance more seriously. Men’s grooming lounges offer bespoke services such as barber services, beard maintenance and even massages.
Men are also being more adventurous with skincare and recognise that what works for women might not work for them. They’re ditching the multi-use products and choosing products designed specifically for their needs. This means there is a growing market for men’s self-care products that are sold in a no-nonsense manner.
People want to know that they are not wasting their money on products they don’t need. They want to stop filling up their makeup bags with products that make their skin look worse or clash with their skin tone. But they need help refining their skincare routines and makeup bags to ensure everything is working as hard as it could be.
Enter the virtual beauty consultation. Moving consultations online makes this accessible to more people, allowing anyone to check in with their beauty consultant anywhere in the world. This allows the consultant to give a prescriptive beauty routine or makeup look that is based on insight, rather than nameless, faceless online quizzes.
Beauty subscription boxes appeal to a wide range of customers. First, they appeal to the adventurous types that want to be able to try lots of different products. Second, they also appeal to those who typically spend less on beauty products, but still want to feel like they’re getting a little treat every month.
To set up a beauty subscription box service, you need excellent contacts with companies that want to get sample products into the hands of their target customers. You are essentially selling a box of samples for a monthly fee. Since it’s a subscription service, you’ll enjoy reliable and predictable income, particularly if you have a minimum term.
Blogging and vlogging are far from dead. If you can find your niche and connect with an audience, you can be confident that people will want to see what you have to say about beauty products. We’re all spending hours and hours on our phones every day, and you could turn that captive attention into money by selling advertising space or accepting sponsors.
You could also accept free products, trips and event invites in exchange for exposure. Once you have an audience, it’s up to you how to capitalise on your situation.
While home brow and lash kits might be thriving, there are still a lot of people that love getting these treatments done at the salon. Salon treatments last longer and come with lower risk that something might go wrong. It’s also far more relaxing to switch off while you have your lashes filled in or your brows laminated than it is to do the treatment at home.
By offering specific services and not being too general in your approach, you can carve out a niche that allows you to stand out from the crowd. You need to make sure you offer the best of the best and keep up to date with the latest trends in lashes and brows in order to stay ahead of the competition.
Let your artistic side run wild with a nail art studio. Nail art is about more than just block colours, it’s about expressing your personality through elaborate nail extensions and art. Running a nail art studio rests on your ability to wow people with your designs, so you can get started without having a huge upfront investment. You just need your equipment and a few willing models.
Use social media to grow your following and offer mobile services until you are confident enough in your offering that you can open your own nail salon. It might take longer, but it will allow you to build up slowly, rather than risking scaling too fast and not having the customer support to keep you afloat.
Anti-ageing treatments like Botox and filler are showing no signs of going out of style just yet. The only difference is that people are more likely to want their fillers and Botox to look subtle and undetectable. With younger people choosing to start treatments earlier, you can guarantee that this sector will have some longevity.
To get started with injectables, you’ll need to take a short course and then build up your experience. Earning potential is excellent when you consider the cost of the treatment and the relative short time to complete each treatment.
People will always want to get away from it all and relax. Combine a spa retreat with beauty treatments, yoga classes, healthy nutritious meals and a digital detox to create the ultimate getaway for busy professionals. The key to a successful spa retreat is to make every guest feel like a VIP.
Setting up a spa retreat will be a considerable investment compared to some of these business ideas, but you could attract investors if you build a name for yourself beforehand. To achieve this, you would need to create a retreat on someone else’s premises and sell spaces to your guests. You then deliver a programme of events during their stay. This will allow you to build a brand and test your offering before you launch with your own premises.
If you are a skilled and experienced hair stylist, you might consider passing this knowledge on to the next generation of stylists. Setting up a hairstyling school will help to establish you as an industry-leader, as not everyone has a method they can teach.
You can start small by bringing on one or two students to your existing salon, and then expand your offering as demand grows. Before long, you’ll need your own site dedicated to teaching and can then shift your focus to helping the next generation of stylists.
Hair extensions are growing in popularity and there seems to be no slowing their rise. As more and more people turn to extensions to achieve the length and volume they want, there is an increase in demand for talented hair extension professionals. If you have the skills and knowledge to help people achieve their hair transformations, you could enjoy incredible earning potential.
Average profits per client are between £130 and £170, so you could be earning up to £1000 a week during peak demand. It’s also a skill that is useful anywhere you go in the world, so your skills will be transferable to another country if you are looking to relocate.
Another growing trend is permanent makeup. This is a form of tattooing that achieves permanent results so individuals can feel more confident in their natural look. Permanent makeup includes eyeliner, eyebrows and lip lining. The results last for around 1-3 years, so you need to be confident in your skills before you get started. Your reputation rests on being able to achieve incredible results for your clients.
If you’re into digital marketing and want to bring together beauty influencers with brands that want to work with them, you might consider starting a beauty influence agency. You’ll need to have a nose for the latest trends and be able to quickly strike up a rapport with influences.
You’ll take a cut of the deal in exchange for an introduction and negotiating on behalf of your influences. You’ll then be responsible for making sure that your influences uphold their side of the deal. It’s a fast-paced role that would be perfect for anyone with a passion for social media.
Starting your own hair product line is a great choice for established hair salons and stylists. Having your own line allows you complete flexibility over what you offer in your salon. If you have unique ideas about how to care for hair properly, you can put your research to the test and help create products that will make life easier for your customers.
You’ll need an initial investment to pay for product development and manufacturing, and then you’ll need to think about distribution and marketing. If you have your own salon, this will be easier as you’ll already have a captive audience.
Spray tanning is just as popular as ever, and many people are now keen to have the treatment done at home rather than head to the salon. Mobile spray tanning bridges the gap between the salon and DIY treatments, offering a professional finish without worrying about finding time to go to a tanning salon.
To get started with a mobile tanning business, you simply need the equipment and a mode of transportation. If you’re not already up to speed with the skills required, you might want to try a course.
Holistic wellness will always be a popular choice. Opening an aromatherapy and wellness centre will allow you to cash in on this trend. Alternative treatments such as reiki healing are big business and can generate high profits with low overheads. Everyone is looking for a way to relax and wind down, and aromatherapy and wellness centres offer the ideal place to achieve this.
Combining wellness and fitness is certainly not a new thing. Gyms have been offering tanning beds for a long time. Creating a business that combines the two is ambitious and potentially very profitable.
This could mean opening a gym specifically for people trying to achieve a particular aesthetic. For men, this might be a sculpted upper body, while women are often more interested in training glutes. You then need to offer beauty treatments that will assist in these aesthetic goals. The perfect example of this would be fat freezing or sculpting spray tans.
It’s not only your dentist that can manage teeth whitening. If you are a trained dental hygienist, you could enhance your income by offering bespoke teeth whitening. You’ll need to choose the system you want to offer and then ensure you have access to the equipment you need to help patients achieve whiter teeth.
The teeth whitening sector is highly regulated, as there is a risk of injury if it is used incorrectly. For this reason, you’ll need to be a dental professional to be able to offer these services.
We’re spending more and more on wedding services every year. In 2022, the average cost of a wedding was £18,400, which is an increase of 6% from the previous year. Beauty services are an essential part of the wedding package so this is a lucrative opportunity.
If you can offer multiple services, such as hair, nails and makeup, you’ll be able to offer package deals. And by adding more people to your team, you can makeover multiple members of the bridal party at once, allowing you to increase your potential profit.
Beauty businesses don’t have to be about offering services directly to customers. Technology is transforming the way we access beauty and beauty tech startups are at the forefront of these developments. Tech startups might use AI or AR to change the way we think about beauty, offering tutorials and shopping experiences that go above and beyond.
A great example of this would be virtual reality try-on services for makeup, which allows individuals to find the right makeup choices from the comfort of their own home. This uses technology to replicate the beauty counter experience. The beauty of this service is that it removes all barriers to shopping, allowing individuals to shop from anywhere, day or night, without feeling intimidated by beauty counter staff.
A well-made wig or hairpiece is a considerable investment and needs to be created by a talented professional. If you have experience with hair extensions, you might want to expand your services to include bespoke wigs and hairpieces. You might be creating wigs to help give people back their confidence after losing their hair, or you might be creating wigs for theatrical use.
You won’t need a lot of investment to get started, and can often start creating generic wigs or hairpieces before you’ve even had your first bespoke commission. Use social media to increase your following and connect with people who might be interested in your services.
Beauty companies often have to make important decisions based on the potential for new trends. This can be difficult for business owners to manage on their own, which is why they employ trend forecasting consultants to stay on the pulse for them. As a trend forecaster, you need to be at the forefront of consumer research. You’ll predict where trends might head and tell companies how they would be best placed to make the most of these trends.
Startup costs for a trend forecasting consultancy are typically very low. All you need is a website to get started and then you can start having conversations with companies that might be interested in your services. Use social media or your blog to share market research and observations so potential clients can see what you do.
Not everyone is happy with their tattoo choices from when they were younger. And not everyone wants to go through the added pain of getting a tattoo coverup – sometimes they just want the tattoo to be gone. You could help people out by offering tattoo removal services using high-powered lasers. The lasers break up the ink in the skin and then the body gradually flushes it away.
To be able to offer tattoo removal, you’ll need specialist equipment, a sterile environment and training. Most training courses take one day to complete and are ideal for individuals with experience in other areas of beauty, such as injectables or tanning. By adding tattoo removal to your existing salon services, you can increase your potential profit and target more people with your services.
These are just some of the wide variety of business ideas you could consider if you want to move into the beauty sector. This list is not exhaustive, and you can guarantee that advances in beauty technology and trends will mean that new roles will be added to this list every year.
Just 10 years ago, brow lamination was not in our vocabularies, but today it’s one of the most popular services. If you want to stay ahead in the beauty sector, you need to be willing to expand your skills, learn new things, and adapt your services to the latest trends.
It can be difficult to feel like you are always chasing a trend, but it’s far better than falling behind and trying to play catch up once a trend has already passed. By taking a flexible role to your beauty business, you will be far more likely to be successful in the sector.