How to Run a Hair Extension Salon - Part 1: Introduction

Tape Sophia Hair Extensions on a Glass Table


Have you started a hair extension salon? What challenges have you faced so far? Let us know in the comments below and we'll do our best to help!

Earlier in the week I was reflecting on the day we decided to open up a hair extension salon. It was the best career decision we had ever made. We borrowed $1000 to get the doors open and Lady Godiva Hair Extensions was turning over a good profit within a few weeks. We still make a very good living within the salon and we have full control over our schedule, allowing us to take time out for the family when we’d like and work long days when necessary.

If you asked us why we got involved with hair extensions in the first place, we’d make a few good points.

  • Hair extensions remain one of the most profitable niches within the hair industry for an independent salon owner. I’m talking anywhere from $50-$200 per hour, depending on the service. An average eight-hour day will profit around $1,000.
  • Hair extension services can be mastered quickly within a year or two.
  • Hair extensions are not permanent, in a worst-case scenario the hair extensions can be removed and reapplied, making them low risk.
  • It’s very cheap to get involved.

In the early days we experienced a lack of available hair extension education. Rhianna participated in some training workshops and learned a little bit about a broad range of methods but didn’t find value in the classes for what they cost. It took time, study and experience for us to learn what actually works, and we want the right training to be available for free.

It’s also worth mentioning, there is a common misconception that you need hair in stock to keep a hair extension business running. The truth is that you don’t need to stock hair at all, the way we set up this process allows for the client to come in for a half-hour consultation, it is during the consultation that the colours are picked, you then book the client in for the application a few days to a week later, giving you time to order and receive the hair.

Part 1: Introduction

This issue of The Independent Salon will be an introduction into a six-part series that will dive into the five key steps that we’ve found to be most important to nailing a successful hair extension salon. In this article we will give you an overview of the process, why the steps are important and what you will take away from the series.

Our five steps to success are:

  1. Acquire the lead
  2. Book the client
  3. Consult with your client
  4. Apply the hair
  5. Schedule maintenance

Part 2: Spark Interest & Generate Leads

Marketing is a difficult task, but we’ll make it as easy for you to market your salon and find success. You'll learn how to position your business in such a way that there is no shortage of clientele, and you find yourself with a full schedule week after week. 

Here's what we'll cover:

  • The importance of identifying your target audience and how to do it.
  • Creating your brand identity.
  • Designing with Canva.
  • A comprehensive social media marketing guide.
  • Other digital marketing avenues.

Part 3: Turn Those Leads into Valuable Customers

Loyal customers are the lifeblood of any business. They're the ones that keep you afloat during tough times and help you to grow during boom periods. Acquiring new customers can be expensive and time-consuming. That's why it's important to find ways to turn leads into customers as efficiently as possible. 

We'll walk you through developing a system that easily converts those leads into paying clients. Showing you which booking systems to use and what automations to put in place, leaving you free from consulting with potential clients during unbillable hours.

You'll learn about

  • Online booking systems
  • The value of setting up automations
  • Creating a price list
  • Answering frequently asked questions
  • Upselling

Part 4: Conduct Perfect Consultations Every Time

Open communication between the hair extension technician and the client during the consultation appointment is key to achieving a flawless application the following week. This is because the stylist can learn about the client's lifestyle, hair type, and other factors that will impact which hair extensions are right for them. In addition, the stylist can get an idea of the client's expected maintenance routine and what the client is looking to attain. By having this information upfront, the stylist can make sure that the client is happy with their hair extensions from start to finish. Not to mention, it helps to avoid any surprises later on down the road.

In part four we will train you in refining your consultations. Key factors include:

  • Open communication.
  • Clear costs and services needed to achieve the desired goal.
  • Answering any questions the client has.
  • Medical questions and signed terms of service forms.
  • Choosing the hair extension colours.
  • Present the client with a hair sample to ensure the quality meets their expectations.
  • Why you need to take a deposit and how to ask for it!

Part 5: Flawless Applications

Applying hair extensions is a delicate process that requires attention to detail in order to achieve the best result. Unfortunately, many people make common mistakes that can ruin the hair extension experience. Here, we'll break down the appointment into segments from start to finish, highlighting the most common mistakes and their solutions so that you can get the best possible outcome every time.

We dive into:

  • Common mistakes and their solutions.
  • Achieving a seamless blend.
  • Placement advice.
  • Shaping the ends.
  • How to make the experience pleasant for your client.
  • How to take exceptional before & after photos.

Part 6: Regular Maintenance

It's so important to have a hair extension maintenance plan in place for your clients. By providing them with aftercare instructions and regular check-ups, you can ensure that their extensions stay in pristine condition. Not only will this keep them coming back to you for all their extension needs, but it will also give you the peace of mind that your clients are being well taken care of. So if you're serious about growing your hair extension business, don't miss part six and make sure you have a proper maintenance plan in place - your clients will thank you for it!

  • Creating a maintenance plan.
  • Scheduling regular maintenance.
  • How to create a take home aftercare sheet for your client.
  • What to look out for when the client returns.


So What Now?

Whether you’re a salon professional looking to start your own hair extension business, or you're already involved in the hair extension industry, I promise this series will be invaluable to you. Stay tuned, as the next episode will walk you through everything you need to know about marketing your salon and generating leads! In the meantime, if you have any questions or need free advice, don't hesitate to reach out to us. We love helping people achieve their dreams of starting and running their own successful business.

Join the movement of motivated hair extension enthusiasts and subscribe to Sophia Hair. You'll receive weekly updates on our FREE content as it is released. Just follow the prompts at the bottom of this page.

If you have more/better information that could help out our community, or questions that need answers, drop a comment below or email us at


Looking forward to hearing from you,


Lucas Miller

Sophia Hair Australia

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