Hair Extension Pricing: A Guide for Stylists
As a stylist, hair extension pricing is an important part of running your business. If pricing your services has been stressing you out, you’re in the right place!
Especially for stylists who are new to extensions, pricing can be overwhelming. How do you determine the right pricing strategy?
In this blog post, we'll explore some key factors to consider with hair extension pricing to help you strike the perfect balance between profitability and customer satisfaction.
Start with some market research to understand your local competitors
Conducting thorough market research will help you understand the landscape for hair extension pricing in your area. Check out other local salons, their pricing strategies, and the services they offer. This will help you understand the going rates in your area. Notice how much is being charged for a full head of hair, a move-up (maintenance appointment), a smaller service, or a package deal that includes cut and color.
Remember what your clients are paying for
You provide a high value service to your clients. You create feelings of trust, safety and satisfaction for them. You offer creative solutions, precision techniques and a vision. Your clients are paying to feel more confident, more beautiful, more like themselves.
You give your clients a chance to feel beautiful and resilient. You help them overcome challenges and overwhelming experiences like losing their hair, feeling insecure about their age, feeling self doubt and insecurity about their appearance.
Remind yourself of this when you go to set your prices.
Okay, the nitty gritty: a few approaches to pricing
There are a few different ways stylists tend to do hair extension pricing.
One way to price is to use the cost of the hair to determine your service fee. Some stylists double the cost of the hair; some triple it. Early on, you might do a few installs where you charge the same amount for the install as the cost of the hair. Let your clients know that this is intro pricing that won’t last long.
Intro hair extension pricing - use this In your first few months after certification:
Hair cost: $300
Install cost: $300
Once you feel a bit more confident, charge more:
Hair cost: $300
Install cost: $600
PRO TIP: Break down the hair extension pricing for your client in terms of what it will cost them per month so they understand how affordable it is in terms of a monthly budget.
Another option: charge by the row
Another approach is to require a hair deposit from your client (they pay the cost of the hair) and then have a set service fee for the amount of hair you’re installing.
Double the cost of the hair & include a take-home bag of maintenance items.
Charge a set fee per row and incentivize adding more rows:
$150 - 1 row
$250 - 2 rows
$375 - 3 rows
PRICING BY METHOD:
You can also do hair extension pricing by the method you’re using.
$150 per row (for Hybrid Weft)
$2 per strand (for Beaded methods - Flat-Tip and I-Link)
$3 per strand (Kera-Link)
$7 per sandwich (Tape-In)
One way to think of it: figure out how much YOU want to be paid an hour after cost and then base your pricing on this.
Why pricing yourself hourly could get tricky (we don’t recommend it)
As you gain experience, you’ll be able to install faster. You’ll be working less hours with even more skill.
Pricing yourself hourly can box you into a situation you don’t want to be in. The more experience you gain, the faster you’ll work, and the more you’ll want to charge. Those shorter appointment times are valuable to your clients, too– they’ll spend less time at the salon to get the same service done.
How to help clients who are on a tight budget
Are you worried that clients won’t be able to afford hair extensions?
Remember, if you can close the initial sale, the extensions will continue to sell themselves. Write your numbers down so they are clear in your mind when you have the initial conversation. When you feel confident about charging your prices, the conversation will yield better results.
Consider giving clients who are on a budget a range of options to choose from.
Option 1 is the most expensive and gives them everything they’re dreaming of (think of it like a full course meal)– we’re talking 2 or 3 colors of hair, a full head’s worth, to give the biggest transformation.
Option 2 is a mid-level option (single course meal) with less hair that still achieves a dramatic effect.
Option 3 would be to show them how one pack of hair will make a difference for them (snack/dessert option) and this is a great way to ease them into extensions– maybe a few pops of color or pieces added in front for fullness.
This way, when your client is deciding which route to go, they have a full ‘menu’ to choose from.
PRO TIP: Make sure your client’s expectations align with the service you will be providing.
Navigating uncomfortable money conversations with your clients
While it might feel awkward at first to talk about money with your clients, it will get easier over time. Explain the value extensions will give them– not only a change in their appearance but also their confidence. Looking good helps us feel good and show up more fully in our lives.
Just like paying for a favorite pair of jeans or a bra that you wear every day, or investing in a service like an expensive facial or Botox treatment, paying for hair extensions can feel pricey up front, but the results you get are worth it. Feeling confident and feeling beautiful– that’s an investment that can change your life in profound, meaningful ways.
Remind your clients of this, and remind yourself of it if something comes up that makes you question the value of your work.
Powerful words to use during the sales convo
If you’re struggling with those awkward money conversations, or find yourself doubting your work over and over, you might try saying:
“This price point isn’t for everyone, I totally get that. Here’s another option that might work better for you.”
“I take my work very seriously. I want you to get the best possible result. I only use the highest quality products, and that’s part of why these costs are higher than what you might see at other salons.”
“Transparency and honesty are important to me. I want you to feel comfortable about how and why I price the way I do. Here, let's look at the breakdown together…”
“If you're struggling with your hair, dealing with hair loss, or really lost about what to do, I can help. There is no shame in starting where you are and doing what you can afford, and going from there.”
“Whatever has brought you here today– thyroid, Covid, hormones, medication, stress– you don't have to feel defeated. I have solutions."
“I’m confident we can find something that’s going to work for your budget and I won’t be offended if you go with the lower priced option I’m showing you.”
“The reason I require a contract is so we’re both on the same page about what to expect and what maintenance is going to keep the life of the hair looking beautiful. This is a commitment.”
Be ready to answer questions directly and honestly
Examples we love:
Do you give new client discounts? No.
Do you offer payment plans? Yes, and I require you to pre-pay before I start on your hair.
Can you stay after 5pm? No.
Work on your MINDSET
Value your work. Don’t give it away for less than it’s worth.
It IS possible to find work/life balance and create pricing that sustains you.
Trust that the right clients will be willing to pay and will find you.
Hair extension pricing involves figuring out what works for you. Striking the right balance between profitability and customer satisfaction is key to establishing a successful and thriving business. Remember to communicate the value of your services effectively and ensure transparency with your clients regarding costs. By providing top-notch service and exceptional results, you'll create a loyal client base and establish your salon as a go-to destination for hair extensions.
Need more help?
Donna Bella Hair offers 1-on-1 coaching with hair stylists to help you grow your business. Tell us what you would like to learn more about and we will connect you with a DBH educator for custom coaching! You can contact us to learn more or check out our online education page.