How To Start A Home Based Beauty Business
When you train to become a beautician, you basically learn:
- The various steps of a facial – to cleanse, scrub, extract whiteheads and blackheads, do a facial massage and then apply a mask.
- The technique of removing unwanted body hair from the face, hands, underarms, legs and so on.
- How to do a manicure and a pedicure
- Threading (in Indian salons) which is the art of using a strand of thread to remove facial hair. Eyebrow shaping can be easily done using this method.
There are several ways of acquiring the right skills. Many training schools in Malaysia teach Beauty Therapy. For an internationally recognised diploma such as CIDESCO (Comit- International D-Esthetique Et De Cosmetologie), which stresses both on theoretical knowledge and practical training on all of the above mentioned except threading, the examination fee is RM850 and the course materials average RM2,000. A full course works up to around RM5,850 to RM6,500, based on your school of choice. The training duration is between four and nine months, depending on whether you’re studying part-time or full-time. Today, a CIDESCO diploma is the world’s most prestigious qualification in the field of esthetics and beauty therapy.
Many training schools also offer local certificate courses, with a heavy emphasis on practical training. If your aim is to run a small business from home and provide beauty services to your customers, such a training course will suffice as it gives you a good grounding. They’re also cheaper than the internationally recognised CIDESCO. Expect to invest around RM3,000 to RM4,000 for a three month full time course. The fees is inclusive of reading materials.
Make an informed decision before you part with your hard earned cash. Check a few schools and compare the courses and syllabus offered before you register for a course. If possible, get feedback from some of the students attending the course as it will help you get a true picture of what you’ll be in for. How is the payment method? Some training schools allow staggered payment. Others demand full payment upon registration. It would be better to make part payment initially as some schools have a reputation of becoming complacent once the full payment is collected.
A much cheaper alternative of gaining knowledge would be through apprenticeship, which provides hands-on training on all areas. You’ll work under strict guidance initially, and learn the art of doing facials, waxing, manicure and pedicure, while getting an allowance at the same time.
Should you opt to learn the trade this way, do make sure that your trainer is knowledgeable and well trained herself.
Setting Up A Room In Your Home
It’s always better to have a separate room to attend to your customers. Do not encourage family members to pop in when you’re attending to a customer, as the latter may wish for privacy. Have an intercom system where family members can contact you if you’re with a customer. A cheaper alternative is to have them knock on your door if they need to communicate.
You will need to assign a contractor to attend to your plumbing and electrical needs for your facial room. A 1.0HP air-conditioner would suffice if your room is small. However, if you are working on a budget, a wall or stand fan would be enough to create the cool atmosphere required. The renovation should approximately cost RM2,500 to RM3,000 depending on whether you would be requiring an air-conditioner.
Are you willing to accept total strangers into your home? A better alternative where security is concerned would be to accept appointment based customers and referrals only. Make this clear to your customers right from the beginning. For safety reasons do not accept male customers except extended family members and close friends. More so if you are alone at the time of your facial service.
If you do not wish to set up a room in your home, due to lack of space or insufficient funds perhaps, it is a good idea to make house calls. You need to invest in portable equipment which you can carry with you to your appointment. Though lugging equipment around may seem like a hassle, you’ll be surprised that many customers love this home service. It saves them on time and expenses incurred traveling.
The best and cheapest form of marketing your business is through word-of-mouth. Never compromise on your service. You will find satisfied customers referring you to their friends.
Make call cards and give this away generally to your customers. It is one way of staying in touch. Call cards cost between RM30 – RM 45 for a box of 100.
Advertise on community bulletin boards such as 7-Eleven which is free-of-charge. Another option is to place your advertisement on this portal’s Xchange section.
You could also advertise your services in local newspapers under the Services Provided Column in the classified section and this would cost you around RM53 for 4 days. You could advertise as offering homebased services.
Building Customer Loyalty
Providing good service is very important. Be punctual for appointments. Give advance notice for cancellation if you cannot attend to them on a particular day. Greet your customers when you meet and get to know them by their first names. Attend to their needs promptly. Know their likes and dislikes where treatment is concerned. Make each customer feel special. They will feel your sincerity and return. Once in a while, give something free to regular customers. When they continuously come for facials, perhaps you could throw in a free eyebrow threading or a manicure. It doesn’t matter if it’s just an extra RM10 service, your customers will appreciate it, anyway. When you create a good rapport with your customers and become friends, they will love you for it and come to you because they enjoy being with you. This is one of the best ways of creating customer loyalty.
Purchase of Equipment for a Home-Based Beauty Business