How To Start A Hair Product Line

Learning how to start a hair product line isn’t as hard as you think.

There’s a big, colossal misconception that reaps a lot of victims among salon owners: that of investing a lot of money in well-known products, thinking that this move has the power to attract customers and grow the salon.

How To Start A Hair Product Line

It doesn’t. Or rather, it’s not entirely so. In this blog post, I’m going to unravel the misconception and also give you the practical (not theoretical, fuzzy, or inapplicable) recipe for:

  1. Free yourself from the slavery of the very expensive products of big companies;
  2. Use the money you save to REALLY grow your salon;
  3. Make yourself unique and different from ALL competitors;
  4. Significantly increase profit margins on products;
  5. Sell products like you never have in your life.

What do you say, is it worth reading all the way through?

How To Start A Hair Care Product Line

The raw nerves of a billion-dollar market (behind the backs of hairdressers)

In these years of working closely with salon owners, I’m discovering just how many interests are behind the hair salon business.

A manager of a well-known hair salon product company secretly confessed to me: the business is a billion-dollar business.

Not a millionaire, billionaire! Behind the world of the nearly 100,000 (legal) hair salons, there are figures that are hard to imagine.

That’s why I know I’m taking a risk by writing this post.

I’ve never said it, but my arrival on the hairdressing education scene has created quite a stir in the industry.

The first people to threaten me (yes, in a veiled way, but they did), were some “colleagues”. But I moved on.

Then it was the turn of some suppliers, who instead of defending “their” way of working honestly, defended the category, specifically that of suppliers who also want to be consultants and give marketing courses…

It’s inevitable that, when you’re moving billion-dollar interests, revealing the background of an industry can be dangerous.

But if you really have your client’s interests at heart, you have to take risks. And I do.

What are dozens of hairdressers confessing to me?

Well, they’re revealing to me a world made up of monthly budgets to be reached at all costs, annual contracts with minimum quantities that must be respected, investments of thousands of euros, “interested advice” regarding training courses and even marketing (if you only knew how many had proposed collaborations of this type to me…), and many other iniquities that affect Italian hairdressers.

Free yourself from the slavery of branded products

Let’s be clear on one point before we go any further: mine is NOT an attack on suppliers, it is NOT an attack on companies, it is NOT an attack on those who choose quality products! Okay?

My intent is to open the eyes of salon owners, to make them understand something very simple:

The product line you choose is NOT, by itself, going to grow your salon!

And here’s why:

Your clients are NOT, in 90% of cases, able to understand the real value of the products you choose! Sure, they know some brands, the most famous ones, but the brand, alone, does not give you any advantage.

Customers don’t know how to distinguish the real value of products.

On the contrary, customers, very often, wonder why they should buy your products, if they are the same ones that you can buy at the pharmacy or supermarket, at a lower price.

There is a percentage of customers who care about the quality of the products you use, but if you have been able to create a good reputation, the customer will trust the products you use, even if they do not belong to a well-known brand.

And here’s another huge misunderstanding: there are products that hairdressers know are of enormous value, but that are absolutely unknown to clients!

Getting into debt or signing crazy deals in order to have high quality products is NOT a choice that pays, on the contrary.

You must always assert your bargaining power and try to get advantageous conditions for you, avoiding minimum quantities that you already know you will not be able to dispose of, and avoiding long-term contracts.

First lesson: if you really want to use THOSE products, then do not accept conditions that are unfavorable to you.

Second lesson: the quality of products is NOT linked to the famous brand and customers are not able to recognize this quality anyway, especially if the same products are also available in supermarkets and pharmacies.

Third lesson: having products of a certain brand does NOT bring you any advantage IF you don’t know how to value the quality in a proper way.

What does this mean? It means that since your potential customers do NOT know how to recognize the quality of these products, then you have to tell them about it, to make it a strong point.

And how can you do that? With communication. With marketing. If your products are really that good, you need to make it a selling point.

You have to talk about them in your marketing content, in your blog, you have to enhance them not only in the displays, but “telling” them in the right way to customers.

Fourth lesson: if the same products are used by other competitors in the area, your competitive advantage is NULL.

Unfortunately, even if you know how to “tell” in the right way the products you use, if your competitors also have them, then your competitive advantage is null and void.

There will be no customers who will choose you because you use those products since others use them too.

Choose products and put your brand on them!

Do you really want to have a competitive edge with the products you use?

Create your own product line!

Difficult? Not at all!

Among the hairdressers in which i know, Luigi Dimonaco, owner of the eponymous salon in Cassino, has done it.

He has created his own product line and is so enthusiastic about it that he has started selling it online through his e-commerce.

And that’s not all: thanks to the success that his product line is achieving, he has decided, little by little, to give up selling the products of large manufacturers.

For sure, he has already stopped advertising it, focusing only on his own products.

I asked him if it was difficult to find the right supplier, and his answer was, “not at all! Just Google Private Label Cosmetics, or contract manufacturing, and select companies.

You can have them send you samples and assess the quality of the products. Then you get them branded with your brand name.”

Pretty simple! There are dozens of companies that produce hairdressing products in private labels (or third party).

What matters is not to pay attention to the lowest price but to go in search of quality products that can show certified scientific tests and are demonstrable on the label. And test them!

Luigi Dimonaco said that he has noticed an unexpected increase in the sale of products not only by applying the sales strategies from the methods stated above, but also thanks to the personal branding of the products themselves.

Customers, even men, are attracted by the uniqueness of the product and make a very simple reasoning: “I’m so satisfied with how my hair has been treated that I want to use those products at home too, also because no one else sells them”.

Use the money you save to REALLY grow your salon.

What will happen when you decide to create your own line of products? Lots of good things, starting with significant savings!

As much as the products you choose may be of high quality, they will always cost you less than the most popular ones, on which the company, the distributor, the agency, the sub-agent and maybe even you have to earn a few cents!

You will have a considerable savings on the purchased products and you will be able to use that money to do something that, almost certainly, you are not doing, or you are not doing in the right way: marketing!

You’ll then have the resources to create your own marketing content that ALSO emphasizes your product line, as well as being able to invest in your specialization, blog, management, autoresponder, YouTube channel, etc. etc…

Make yourself unique and different from ALL competitors.

The key thing is that you will have, with your branded product line, a UNIQUE differentiator from all of your competitors!

While they will continue to sell the manufacturers’ products, with no margins, and perhaps selling the same products as your competitors and sometimes in supermarkets or pharmacies, you will be able to boast of having a unique product line and even call it better.

Why would you call it better? First of all because there are no terms of comparison, since it is, in fact, unique.

And then because if you know how to enhance your products by combining them with services carried out to perfection, you will transform your salon into something unique and different from all your competitors.

Significantly increase profit margins on products

We’ve already mentioned profit margins, but it’s worth reconsidering: after a somewhat challenging first phase, during which you’ll have to

  • Look for companies producing private label products;
  • Evaluate the samples you will be sent;
  • Select the products you need;
  • Branding (i.e., putting your brand on the products);
  • Create marketing campaigns in which you explain the value of your products…

You won’t have to think about it anymore, because you’ll just have to place the orders, doing it online, without even having to interface with an agent or seller. You order, the courier delivers, you sell. Stop.

To that point also, the sustained initial costs will be absorbed by everything, and to you, they will remain on the margins of gain before the unthinkable.

Sell products like you’ve never done in your life

As Luigi Dimonaco said, self-producing a line of products represents a turning point even from the point of view of the number of products sold.

If, in fact, you’re good at applying the marketing principles I teach, you’ll be able to enhance, thanks to your products, your services as well.

If you are, as I’m sure you are, a good craftsman, a high-level hair stylist (or your collaborators are), you will be able to win over your clients, who will be so satisfied with the result that they will want to take home the products you used during the service and that only you sell because they are yours!

There are no products that sell themselves; you need marketing!

I’ll reiterate that I’m not mad at honest vendors (even though I know I’m going to attract a lot of flack after publishing this post), nor am I saying that all hairdressers should abandon the products they use to create their own line of products.

You are an entrepreneur; you will make your own choices.

However, I am saying, and I want to reiterate this strongly, that there are NO products that sell themselves!

There are no customers who will prefer you because you invested thousands to secure a product line from a major brand!

It doesn’t work that way!

Clients care that you use quality products, sure, but they are not able to recognize this quality!

Clients care that services are performed with professionalism and attention, not if you use brand X rather than brand Y.

Marketing is what brings clients to your salon!

  •  It’s the customer acquisition campaigns;
  •  It’s the content you produce based on your specialization;
  •  knowing how to differentiate yourself from the competition;
  •  It knows how to retain as many clients as possible;
  •  It knows the sales strategies that will maximize your revenue through upselling and treatment sales;
  •  Creating standardized procedures that make your salon work to perfection, giving the client a unique experience…

These are the things that will grow your new Hair Product Line. Instead of investing in expensive products, invest in marketing.

If you want to learn how to defend yourself against those who act in complete conflict of interest and instead want to create the conditions for your business to grow, then you need to…