Revised and updated January 20, 2020.
According to IBISWorld, the beauty salon industry is worth more than $63 billion in the US, and entrepreneurs who want a piece of this market have four strong choices in the latest beauty segment called “salon suites.”
The salon industry has typically been dominated by independent shops, but that’s a very expensive route for beauticians to go these days. Another way to get started is to get hired into an existing salon and work on commission, which means keeping only about 40% of one’s earnings on average. Yet a third option is to rent a space within an existing salon, but in this case you still have to operate under the rules (and hours) of the salon owner.
On the rise recently is a new fourth way, which is kind of like the whole co-working phenomenon – shared workspaces – but in this case the shared space is specifically geared towards beauty salon services. The facility is centrally managed, but each space operates as its own independent business under its own rules and hours. The franchisee in this new beauty industry segment is essentially acting as a facility manager renting space to individual beauty service providers.
Here are the 4 best salon suite franchises of 2020:
1. Phenix Salon Suites
Phenix Salon Suites built its first location big enough to accommodate 22 individual suites in a 45,000 square-foot facility. Every suite was taken by opening day, and there was a long waiting list for many more beauticians who were hoping to get in. Each suite can be rented on a month-to-month basis without a long-term commitment. The only basic utility not included in the rental fee is phone service.
The spaces are luxurious, and peak-hour reception service is provided so every guest is greeted as they enter the facility. Other tenant amenities include complimentary credit card machines, break room (sink, microwave, seating), on-site laundry, WiFi for tenants and clients, and an after-hours security system.
Founded by Gina Rivera in Colorado Springs, Colorado in 2007 and franchising since 2010, the number of locations has grown rapidly from only five in 2011 to the current total of 250 (up from 230 in the previous year), of which three are company-owned and all are located in the US.
2. My Salon Suite/Salon Plaza
My Salon Suite/Salon Plaza offers beauticians generously-sized suites with enough space for three workstations in each one. This is an upscale concept that brings together multiple suites and a variety of beauty services. The chain emphasizes building a community among the beautician tenants based on shared values of fun, love, creativity, inspiration, and entrepreneurial spirit. Suite tenants keep all their profits after paying their rental fee and are also free to sell whatever products they desire.
In addition to all the amenities and utilities included, tenants can also access training and support to grow their business, and tap into a powerful referral network. The company also offers Eco Salon Suites for reduced energy and water consumption in an eco-friendly environment.
Founded by salon veterans Al and Alan in New Orleans, Louisiana in 2010 and franchising since 2012, the number of locations has grown from three in 2012 to the current total of 129 (up from 95 last year), of which 29 are company-owned and one is located outside the US.
3. Salons by JC
Salons by JC are multi-suite locations where franchisees can assemble a wide range of beauty services depending on who they select to rent space. These services often include hair, hair extensions, braiding and weaving, nails, skincare, hair removal, massage, makeup, eyelash extensions, tanning, and body art. As with other companies on this list, the appeal for beauticians is that they can truly run their own business as they see fit.
The salon suites are customizable and come with all kinds of amenities, including full-service concierge, high-speed WiFi, 24/7 building access and security, and a free JC booking app, all of which come with one weekly rental payment, greatly simplifying a service provider’s finances. Suite tenants can also take advantage of business coaching and ongoing education services.
Founded by Jack Griffey and Cecil Miller in Dallas, Texas in 1997 and franchising since 2011, the number of locations has grown from just nine in 2012 to the current total of 97 (up from 91 last year), of which 10 are company-owned and one is located outside the US.
4. Beauty Square
Beauty Square is a combination of two different brands: Beauty Mall Suites and My Suite!@Beauty Square. The concept here is for the franchisee to carefully select tenants for the spaces to provide a broad range of services, such that customers know they can get everything they need in one spot, from hair to nails to various spa treatments (facials, peels, waxing, massage, and so on).
Utilities included in the rental fee are water, WiFi, electricity, satellite TV, and a line for credit card processing. Furnishings include sink, mirror, cabinets, stylist chair, shampoo bowl, manicure table, and a range of options depending on the specific services being offered. Additional amenities include laundry, private suites, kitchen, vending machines, ATM machine, security alarm, 24-hour security cameras, and daily maintenance of all public areas.
Founded by Odalys and Julio Martin in 2010 and franchising since 2016, there are now nine locations, all in Florida.
An Important Note About Our Methodology
The franchises on this list were ranked according to the number of units in the franchise system. If you are a prospective franchisee searching for franchise opportunities that meet or exceed certain performance benchmarks for sales, profits, and return on investment, please check out this list of America’s Most Lucrative Franchises.