Among the most important shifts that are occurring in the salon hair care industry is stylists’ migration from salons to independent businesses. The recently published edition of our Salon Hair Care Global Series revealed that an increasing number of stylists are becoming independent. Not being affiliated with a salon, these hairdressers decide to rent out space, provide services in their own homes, or become mobile and drive to their clients. How does this impact the salon hair care industry?
Development of lower priced brands and distributor private label
Although it’s not the case of every single market where independent stylists are an important and growing group, we see such an example in Russia where the development of mobile hairdressers supports strongly sales growth of local, low-priced brands such as Studio Professional and Kapous Professional from Kapous Cosmetics. In Germany, for the last few years we have observed indirect distribution through distributors and wholesalers increase in importance, owing this partly to the development of distributor private label, which is eagerly purchased by lower end salons as well as independent stylists.
Limited product stock
Due to the nature of the business, independent stylists often have limited space and resources to carry out an inventory of salon hair care products, especially when it comes to take-home products for their clients. Distributors that address this issue can win a lot. We have seen some recent examples from Amazon, which is testing several models of distribution, some geared to independent stylists. For example, the stylist would not stock inventory, but if a client orders products and provides the stylist’s name then the stylist would receive a commission from Amazon.
Increased importance of indirect sales
The granularity of the market means changes in the distribution model. Marketers have neither the possibility nor the willingness to sell directly to those independent stylists, as their orders are usually minor in comparison to regular salon accounts. With the development of independent hairdressers, there is also an increase in distributors and wholesalers’ doors. We can see that clearly in the United Kingdom market where Sally Beauty, the biggest beauty supply store chain in the county, continues to open new locations.
We will be taking a deeper dive into the hot topic of independent stylists in our new study, Independent Stylists: Global Market Brief, in which we survey hundreds of booth renters, mobile hairdressers, and at-home hairdressers located across five countries: Brazil, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.