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FDD Talk: The Amazing Lash Franchise Opportunity (Financial Performance Analysis, Estimated Costs, and Other Important Stuff You Need to Know)

by Franchise Chatter on February 19, 2016

in FDD Talk 2017: Salon Franchises, Franchise Earnings, Salon Franchise



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Amazing Lash Studio

In this FDD Talk post, you’ll learn the following:

  • Section I – Background information on the Amazing Lash franchise opportunity, including relevant news updates
  • Section II – Estimated initial investment for an Amazing Lash franchise, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2015 FDD
  • Section III – Presentation and analysis of Amazing Lash’s financial performance representations, based on Item 19 of the company’s 2015 FDD, including information on the:
  • 2014 gross revenue for each of the seven Amazing Lash Studio businesses (six affiliate-owned and one franchised) that were open and operating during all or substantially all (i.e. at least 11 full months or more) of the 12-month period from January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014

Section I – Background Information

Amazing Lash is leveraging the eyelash extension craze into a franchising phenomenon. Co-founded in 2010 by Jessica and Edward Le, they started franchising the concept in 2013 and already boast at least 57 locations. You could say this is like achieving success in the blink of an eye, literally!

Here’s how Houston-based Amazing Lash keeps customers looking great with long luscious lashes in the beauty services industry:

The Eyelash Craze

First invented in 1916, eyelash extensions (or fake eyelashes, though it’s obviously not the preferred term in the industry), used to be thought of as just a niche beauty service. In recent years, however, a focus on lashes has seen this niche grossing $45 million a year just in eyelash extensions. It may still be a small chunk of the $45 billion beauty industry, but it’s one that’s growing fast.

A Membership Model

John Leonesio is the CEO of Amazing Lash. He developed the membership model of Massage Envy when he founded that chain. The basic idea is you sign up for however many visits you want to make in a month and then schedule them online. The typical approach is to offer a surprisingly low introductory rate on a first set of lashes with an eye towards converting newbies into members.

Patented Techniques

The semi-permanent lashes are light-weight and come in four different basic styles. They’re attached using pharmaceutical grade adhesive about 1mm from your eyelid and won’t come off except when your natural lashes shed themselves. Refills to keep everything looking full need to happen every 2-4 weeks. The initial process takes 1.5-2 hours, with subsequent refill visits lasting 45-60 minutes.

Beyond the Basics

For customers who want to go beyond the basic eyelash extensions, there are plenty of options: Real Siberian mink eyelashes are ultra-soft and extremely light-weight. Volume lashes are lighter and fluffier to give a fuller look for a more dramatic appearance without going with thicker, heavier lashes. There are also colored lashes for those who want to choose from solid colors like red, blue, green, or purple, or even two-toned lashes.

Rapid Growth

When you visit the chain’s newsroom on its website, it’s basically just a surprisingly long listing of new studios opening…constantly. But the numbers don’t always add up. In its most recent press releases, it talks about having 57 studios open. But when you visit the website’s “locations” page, it says at the top “83 locations and growing.” It’s not clear how this math works, but the latter figure might include locations close to opening.

The chain does tout itself as the largest and fastest growing eyelash extension franchise in the nation with more than 170 franchises and 500 regional developer licenses awarded in 27 states in just two years. Of course, not all of those will pan out into functioning locations, but they’re clearly growing strong.

Section II – Estimated Costs

  • Please click here for detailed estimates of Amazing Lash franchise costs, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2015 FDD (updated).

Section III – Financial Performance Representations (Item 19, 2015 FDD) and Analysis



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