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Last updated: August 19, 2020

Salons Using Up To 175% More Color Post-Lockdown, Report Finds

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Extra Product Usage? Here’s How To Avoid Absorbing The Cost Yourself

After the recent months-long lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic, salons are using up to 175 percent more color on each retouch, according to color management system Vish. For the average six-chair salon, that’s between $6,000 and $12,000 in additional product used to service clients after the lockdown—and many salons are absorbing those costs instead of charging appropriately, cutting into already-thin margins. Here’s how to understand your color pricing and how to avoid undercharging.


Understanding Color Pricing

Your color services should take into account both service cost and product cost. When the product cost changes, the base service price doesn’t—instead, you can up the price based on the amount of product actually used.



How To Charge For Extra Product Usage

By charging for product and service separately (and only charging precisely the amount of product used during the service) salons provide transparency to customers in how they are being charged. And this way of pricing works! Neal Loucka (@nealloucka), owner of Sound Salon Spa in St. John’s in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada says his salon saw an increase of 161 percent in product charges compared to what they would have charged.


“Passing extra product costs to their guests, rather than absorbing it themselves, increases profitability in a time that every gram counts,” says Joshua HowardCEO of Vish. “Preserving this revenue will help salons bounce back from hard times and continue to build a strong color business.”


Vish Front Desk makes it easier to charge for actual product used because it records the amount in each formula you mix. It also eliminates the need for stylists to remember how much product they used or for the stylist to tell the front desk to charge for extra product. The technology is automatic, ensuring what is actually used is recorded and paid for by the client, not absorbed by the salon.


How Clients Are Reacting

For guests who are confused as to why they have to pay more, just be transparent and explain the price breakdown to them. “Initially we thought we’d see pushback from clients, but once they understand that they are being charged only for product used on their head and not what the average person uses, they were happy to pay the difference,” says Bruce Brothersco-owner of Goldie X Bob Hair Salon in Denver.


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