We asked Salon Owners, Stylist Employees, Booth Renters, and Salon Suite Owners these 8 questions to see what the real deal is in the salon.

This article will really give you insight in to the pulse of what the stylist really thinks and how the salon business is really doing. The responses were all anonymous so it made it easier for people to say what they really thought.

You'll be surprised at the answers to some of these questions and hopefully you'll find the information helpful.

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RevuCell Salon Pulse InfoGraphic

RevuCell Salon Pulse InfoGraphic

We wanted to give you all the details, so you'll find more information on each question below. 

What frustrates you most about working in the salon industry?

Whether you are the stylist employee / booth renter or are the Salon owner. It looks like the #1 thing that makes life difficult in the salon is the professional environment.

Everyone wants a nice and happy place to work. It's just that my nice and happy place may not match yours. And that could be the cause of some serious stress for you, the owner, and your stylist neighbors.

We'll let you think about how you would answer this question about your salon environment. Remember you can share your thoughts in the comments.

I've listed the top 4 answers for each type of stylist below. You'll get an idea of all the different things that frustrate a hairstylist in their daily career.

Stylist Employee's Top 4 complaints:

Unprofessional Owners
Not Making Enough
Bad Customer

Booth Renter's top 4 complaints:

Unprofessional Environment
Bad Customer
Cash Flow

Salon Suite Owner's Top 4 complaints:

Fixing Other People Work
Cash Flow
Bad Client

Salon Owner's top 4 complaints:

Cash Flow
Bad Stylist Work
Bad Customer

I think the best takeaway is that both stylist and salon owners would be happier with a more professional salon environment. 

It would be interesting to see how you can take control of the environment in your own salon to make it a better place to work. What would happen if owners and stylists stopped pointing fingers at each other and just made the work environment better for one another.

Take away #2: Salon Suite Owners have left the drama of the salon behind and are more worried about color and cut correction and cash flow than any of the environment related issues of the salon. The reason for this is that for the most part they control and have taken responsibility for their own environment.

How have you helped to change your salons culture so that a happy work place and great relationships are created?

Share your thoughts in the comments!

What do you think will help you to grow New business and get more clients?

We posed this question with the assumption that everyone wants more business, right? Well we were wrong in that assumption. Some stylists in all the categories actually see it as "Not My Job" to get new business into the salon or that they have too much business to handle already.

Check out the results:

Stylist Employees

42.6 % New Products & Services
38 % Not My Job
16 % Be More Eco / Organic

Booth Renters

48.15 % New Products & Services
33.6 % Keep Everything the Same
11 % Not My Job

Salon Suite Owners

45.6 % New Products & Services
36 % Be More ECO / Organic
13.5 % I don't need any more Customers

Salon Owners

62.5 % Keep Everything the Same
23.8 % New Products & Services
12 % Not My Job

There seems to be a disconnect between what the different groups value. 

What we found most surprising from the comments and answers to this question was that so many people thought it was "Not Their Job" to bring in new business to the salon.

With that mindset it is very difficult to grow the salon business or make it a better environment to work in.

If a salon owner tries new programs to get new customers but gets no support from her staff then it's a lost cause.

On that same note, if a stylist or booth renter is trying to bring in new business for themselves but they do not feel supported by the rest of the salon it becomes a losing battle very quickly.

Salon Suites Owners and Employee stylist were most interested in new products, new services, continuing education and current trends.

They were also the most outspoken about having healthier products and being more Green / ECO / Organic.

Salon owners and booth renters were both more interested in building business by keeping things the same. There was less of an interest in new products or techniques and more of an emphasis on cash flow and the bottom line. 

We would guess that because of this focus on the bottom line there was less interest in taking a chance on new products or services  or for taking the time to learn new techniques.

That disinterest however seems like a detriment to building new business. It is hard to stand out as a stylist or salon if you are not able to offer the latest innovations in the industry.​

As a stylist or salon owner how can you use this information to help reshape what you think is best for your salons growth? 

Are you Happy with your career choice and why?

We are a happy bunch! Thankfully the majority of hairstylists are happy about the career choices they have made and their current status in the industry.

Stylist Employee

79.5 %

Booth Renter

89 %

Salon Suite's Owner

90 %

Salon Owner

94 %

Check out why we're happy and what are the most important factors of that happiness for the different stylist types.

Stylist Employee

​Most respondents in the employee group were newer to the beauty industry and were happiest in this role because of the steady paycheck and steady client base.

When you think about the difficulties in building a clientele as a new stylist you can see why an employee position makes sense.

As an employee at a good salon with good foot traffic you can start to build your clientele and your career with the least amount of risk. The lower the risk though, the lower the potential  reward as pay is much less than if you worked for yourself.

​Booth Renter

Flexibility and control were the two most important things that made booth renter stylists happy.​

Flexibility in scheduling makes it easier for booth renters to live their life outside of the salon. 

Most booth renters were stylists that had worked previously as employees or salon owners. They had built their clientele and there focus was more on business maintenance rather than growth. ​

Salon Suite Owners

​Freedom and a drama free environment was at the top of the happiness factor for salon suite owners.

The ability to schedule their days with no restrictions so that Family could be priority was the top factor.

Creating a space that was drama free and a healthy working environment came in a close second for these stylists.

They, too, were more seasoned stylists that had built a clientele working in a salon before venturing out on their own.

And although they enjoyed relationships with other stylists, they valued the ability to create their own peaceful space over the inconsistency of a salon environment that they could not control.

Salon Owners

​Salon owners by and large saw their position as a professional accomplishment and a journey in personal growth.  Being their own boss and employing others was very important to how they saw themselves and their success in the beauty industry. 

Salon owners while still happy about there choice in career also expressed their concerns over the pressures of salon ownership including the responsibilities in employing others and keeping the lights on. 

Questions for all Stylists and owners

How can you create a better environment in your salon that takes into account the goals of those you share a space with?

As the stylist work life balance changes, how do you make your salon an environment that is attractive to seasoned stylists with existing clientele?

Share your answers in the comments.

Do you have clients that ask about eco friendly & Organic Products?

36.6 % of Clients are looking for Organic Options

​The Organic products niche is growing and looks to continue it's growth pattern in the salon industry. 

If you think about it, 10 years ago the super markets of the US may have had 1 or 2 shelves with "organic" products. Almost no one but the Yoga and Pilates crowed talked about it.

Today there are whole grocery stores devoted to the Organic Lifestyle and Organic Products. Thousands of websites and tens of millions of customers that believe Organic is the way to a healthier and happier life. 

What struck us as interesting is that while 36.6% of salon clients were asking about more Organic or Natural hair and skin products, most stylists did not make a connection as to that being a top priority to grow their business. ​

Think about it, 1/3 of your customers cannot find something in your salon that you should be providing. I say should because when it comes to hair you are the go to person for each client. 

The stylists that did make the connection were already carrying Organic products, open to trying new ones all the time, and some had transformed their salon experience  into "Organic Spaces".

They were also watching their business grow while others saw a decline in existing business. 

​We see the "Organic Niche" as one of the most promising sectors for salon growth for the foreseeable future. 

percentage of Stylist Service business from hair color services?

Hair color services are an amazing form of repeat business for stylists. Not surprisingly it should make up the biggest chunk of the monthly business.

First we'll share the numbers and then  a little insight. 

Salon Suite Owners


An astounding 90% of salon suite owners in the survey attributed over 51% of their business to come specifically from color services. 

They also let us know that a lot of the color work on new clients came as a result of fixing someone else's color mistake.

That mistake could have been an at home box color job gone wrong or a hair color service from a different salon that left the customer unhappy and looking for a new stylist.

These stylists also mentioned having the ability to use whatever color line they chose as opposed to having to use a particular brand because they worked in a salon that only carried that color line.

That freedom of choice allowed them to select the best color for the particular job.​

So on top of having a set clientele booked for color services every month, they were also experiencing growth in business from color service clients. So much so that many commented they had no more time available to take on new clients.

Salon Suite stylists also showed a great interest in new color education and learning new techniques. 

While "Education" is the word used to describe learning the new technique, the way the "Education" is consumed has changed dramatically. 

In previous years hands on or presentation style classes at the local distributor were the way that stylists consumed new education.

Today educational opportunities are available through Online Training, YouTube Video, Live Webinars directly from manufacturers. There are dozens of ways to get great education.

The stylists that are taking advantage of those educational opportunities are succeeding in building new realities for themselves and their business.

The salon suite stylists were also the most vocal in this section citing freedom of schedule as a key to being able to learn new things on their own time. 

Salon Owners & Booth Renters


Sixty Six percent of both Booth Renters and Salon Owners reported that the majority of their business was from hair color services (51%+ of their revenue).

Both of these groups also had shared opinions on education and new products. Making them secondary to the day to day operations and customer retention of the salon or chair.

The consensus was more focused on keeping things the same and not losing business as opposed to trying new things to grow business. 

Now if you're a salon owner or booth renter and feel that this does not describe you. Please don't be upset, instead think of yourself as one of the brave few that are looking at the industry and trying to figure out how to grow in some very uncharted waters.

You should be applauded for persevering in tough times.

It is understandable to see how focus on customer retention would trump new customer acquisition for this group because of the ​other pressures they are under.

Making rent, paying employees, time management of not only themselves but their staff.

Not to mention if there is a business problem that arises like plumbing, advertising, etc... that takes money from the business and does not return money into the business. 

When you look at all these other issues that impact current business, this is why new products and education are not ​top of mind for most. 

The uncertainties of the business climate day to day make it a roller coaster ride at times for owners and booth renters.

Interesting Note:

You would think the Salon Suite owner would have this same outlook as they also feel the pressures of making rent (higher than booth rate), keeping customers, etc...

But the joy of having their own space and the security in the quality of customers and customer relationships they have developed over time make it worth the risk.

And since the risk is worth the reward their mindset is switched to how can I stand out, how can I be different...

In my opinion this change in mindset leads to interest in new techniques, education, and innovative products. Not necessarily marketing driven products but good quality products that fit the personality and choice of the specific salon suite owner.

Once again the Freedom to choose trumps all other reasons. ​

Stylist Employees


Only 22% of Stylist Employees considered a majority of their business coming from color. The other 78% reported other services make up the majority of their business.

Not surprisingly when you look at the age and time in the industry statistics for stylist employees, a high number are newer and starting to build their career. Most of their business consists of walk in business and hair cuts.

It takes time to develop customer relationships and color clientele. 

Stylist employees, however, did share educational interest and new product curiosities with the Salon Suite owners. These 2 groups were more excited about new trends and new products in the market than the salon owner or booth renter.

If you're not in this 22% , you should explore different ways to build your color business and become an elite level hair color professional. That by far is the most sound and long term success plan that works for stylists.

Specializing in Hair Color Services and Color Correction can take your career to the next financial milestone very quickly.

Do you have customers asking about hair regrowth products and solutions? if yes, what gender?

RevuCell Man and Woman Icon
87 % Stylist Employees

Reported both male and female clients inquiring about hair loss / hair regrowth products.

RevuCell Man and Woman Icon
74 % Booth Renters

Reported both male and female clients inquiring about hair loss / hair regrowth products.

RevuCell Man and Woman Icon
70 % Salon Suite Owners

Reported both male and female clients inquiring about hair loss / hair regrowth products.

RevuCell Man and Woman Icon
76 % Salon Owners

Reported both male and female clients inquiring about hair loss / hair regrowth products.

The majority of stylists reported that clients were requesting information on hair regrowth and hair loss prevention. This majority was almost equal in gender, so just as many women are worried about hair loss and hair thinning as men.

As you can see from the numbers that is a lot of people with interest in a product that can help their hair shedding, prevent future hair loss, and help to regrow hair.

You can read other articles on this site about hair growth and hair loss solutions.​

It also makes sense that consumers with hair loss concerns would come to their hairstylist  for information. Especially since stylists are in the business of hair and see the hair loss scenario play out over time for many of their clients.

The disconnect appears to be in the stylist realizing that this is a huge area for them to grow in their knowledge and for their business. 

This question is particularly important to me because at RevuCell we have created and Organic Hair Growth System that we are launching this Spring 2017. 

RevuCell provides a high quality organic solution for stylists to recommend. ​

Revitalizing Shampoo

RevuCell Revitalizing Hair Loss Shampoo for Hair Growth
RevuCell Revitalizing Shampoo is 70% organic, Sulfate-Free, Fluten Free, Vegan, Paraben Free, Fragrance Free, and made with Cruelty Free and Eco Friendly Ingredients

Volume Enhancing Conditioner

RevuCell Instant Volume Conditioner for hair growth
RevuCell Organic Instant Volume Conditioner is 82% Organic, Gluten Free, Vegan, Sulfate Free, Fragrance Free, Paraben Free, and made with Cruelty Free Eco Friendly Ingredients

Regrowth Scalp Serum

RevuCell Twice Daily Hair Loss Therapy Serum
RevuCell Organic Hair Loss Therapy Twice Daily Serum

As part of our launch we've developed educational programs for stylists to:

  • Learn how to speak to your clients about hair loss & hair regrowth
  • Cutting techniques for thin and thinning hair
  • Hair color techniques to make hair look fuller while it regrows

Get More Info On Our Stylist Education & Sales Program and Check Out Our Organic Salon Program

What is The #1 Strategy for growing your business that you have IMPLEMENTED and it worked?

Customer Referral

The number one successful strategy is the time tested client referral, It doesn't sound exciting or technologically advanced, but regardless of that it is still the best way to build your business. ​

Out of all the different strategies for growing your clientele, word of mouth referral from happy customers to their friends will bring you the biggest reward.​

Try to develop a habit of asking clients to refer their friends and family.

Remember that your clients may think you don't need any more business or that you may be to busy. By letting them know that you are trying to grow your clientele and that you would appreciate a referral, you are recruiting them to work for you.

If they are happy with you and the results you provide for them, they will have no problem recommending you to a friend.

And when those recommendations start coming in, make sure you reward the customers that brought you new business with an added bonus to their service, like a reconstructing hair treatment, or a free upgrade in their service.

But make sure its a reward and not a bribe. It's better to reward after the fact than to try to entice a referral by offer a promotion for it.

Genuine referral and genuine gratitude for that referral is the best way to go.

Social Media Self Promotion​

Something a little newer and sexier is using your social media channels to promote your work while tagging your happy clients.

This strategy is great because you get to show off your work and by highlighting your clients and tagging them, their friends can see your work when the posts are re-shared by your happy client.

No need to boost the post or advertise just yet. Just focus on the Free Promotion for now.

The simple act of sharing your great work on a daily basis and asking your friends to share the post helps to bring you new business.

Give it a try and watch your clientele grow.

Social Media Tips:

Building a schedule for yourself for online posting and using tools like HootSuite to automate posting can help you to promote your work even while you work on other clients. ​

Make it a habit to post daily as a lot of people miss the post in their feed. By reposting your own content on a schedule you have a greater chance at having it seen and shared.

Keep your social media professional! Yes you must have personality in your social media, but remember if you goal is to use it to build business it needs to be PG13 at most. If you have rated R or NC17 posts, post them to a separate account.​

I'm not saying to not be authentic, I'm just saying you can have to social media accounts and have one dedicated to your salon business.

Update and keep track of your Google Business listing! By far the most inexpensive (FREE) form of local advertising.

Reviews Matter! Get as many good ones as you can. Solve problems before they are public. Always be professional.​

What is The #1 Strategy for growing your business that you have IMPLEMENTED and it failed?


Originally looked upon as a great way to get new customers for any business, GroupOn actually has turned out to be more of a bargain hunters treasure chest. While it can serve as a great way for consumers to get deals, it definitely does not help a local business like a hair salon to grow long term consistent business. ​

Most stylists that reported using GroupOn as a promotion to get new business reported little to no repeat business after the initial promotion was redeemed.​

Do yourself a favor and stay away from this strategy as it is a double edge sword. A waste of money and a waste of something even more important your time.​

Online Advertising

Paid placement of ads for salon services came in a close second for the worst way you could spend money advertising your services. Ads targeted to potential clients failed for a number of reasons​, but most importantly because there was no connection between the service provider and the person receiving the service. 

​It's easy to try a new restaurant or even a new manicurist or masseuse because it could be a one time affair that is easily remedied.

But hair is a very personal and permanent piece of you and trusting an ad for hair services may not work out. There is too much risk.

Think of the risk and reward factor. If you save a few bucks on a hair cut or hair color is that worth taking the chance to get these services not knowing the quality of what you are going to get. Knowing that a mistake cannot be fixed easily.

A bad haircut takes a long time to grow out and bad hair color costs a lot more to fix.

As a side note salon suite owners reported new business from word of mouth referral from existing clients to their friends who needed to fix problems created by other stylists.​ Maybe those customers had purchased promos?

You want to remember what you express to your clients. You get what you pay for. A cheap price means a cheap job.

When it comes to your hair don't take that chance because a cheap job is an expensive fix later.​

​What do you think?

Keep the conversation going and let us know what you think of the findings by posting a comment below. And don't forget to please share this on your social media.