Today’s stylists have tons of choices about their work environment, and that’s a great thing. Renting a booth or chair is a trend: some stylists prefer to pay the salon a flat fee and work as an independent contractor. But others prefer the security, benefits, and relationships that come as a salon employee. After giving the independent contractor route a try, many stylists find that a secure job with a fantastic salon is a better fit.
What Are The Pros and Cons of Renting A Chair?
Many stylists are going for flexibility and control when they opt to rent a chair. Setting your own schedule definitely has its perks, but there are also hidden costs and extra stress involved. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of renting a chair:
Renting A Chair: The Pros
- More flexibility: you control your hours, fees and your client list.
- You generally take home more of what you earn. However, be aware that hidden costs associated with being a contractor, including business taxes, tools and rent, can wipe out any financial advantages.
- You have a choice in how you work with your clients, what you charge and what products you use.
Renting A Chair: The Cons
- You’re 100 percent responsible for getting clients in your chair without marketing support from an employer.
- Working with a network of independent contractors can make it hard to build a brand. There may be less consistency on the floor, so you’re on your own in creating your reputation.
- Developing relationships with your fellow contractors can be more challenging than in a traditional employment setting.
- Renting a chair means a lot of additional administrative work, including managing scheduling, business taxes and accounting.
- As an independent contractor, you have to purchase products and tools.
- Your income is less stable, and you’re more likely to have seasonal income swings.
What Are The Pros and Cons of Working for a Salon?
Like every employer, commission-based salons have rules and structure. Some stylists struggle with this, but others thrive in this environment. Working for a salon takes the marketing and administrative details off your plate and lets you focus on what you do best: fabulous cuts and color. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of working for a salon.
Working for a Salon: The Pros
- Team camaraderie is one of the top reasons stylists return to a traditional salon setting. Your fellow stylists are colleagues rather than competitors. At a full-service salon and medi-spa, there are aestheticians and other service providers. Radiance Salon & Medi-Spa offers discounts on all services, so your workplace is also your medi-spa. Radiance also creates an environment where team-building and strong relationships blossom. You have the support of management on your side.
- When you sign on as a salon employee, you benefit from a brand. That goes a long way in attracting and maintaining clients.
- High-end salons offer salary, commissions and tips. At Radiance, stylists make commissions of 50 to 60 percent with NO BACK BAR FEES and are guaranteed a robust salary while they build their book. Of course, our clients tend to be very generous tippers, another considerable perk.
- Working for a salon means administrative support. You don’t have to deal with scheduling, and there’s a team in place to take care of the business end of things. You collect your paycheck and tips, and you’re set.
- The salon provides products and tools and offers a commission on retail sales.
- Professional development and continuing education are some things stylists often miss most when they head out on their own. Top salons like Radiance prioritize ongoing education and keeping up with the latest techniques–and pay to keep their staff up to speed.
- These days, getting medical, dental and retirement plans from an employer is a huge win. Radiance offers competitive benefits, including a 401K. Our employees are professionals, and we treat them as such.
Working For A Salon: The Cons
- Less flexibility: as an employee, you’ll usually have set hours and a regular schedule. However, this also allows you to create a routine with regular hours and ditch the ongoing scramble that many freelancers experience.
- High-end salons create consistency by putting rules or policies in place. For many stylists, this works well, but for some, this can be challenging.
- Gross pay may be lower as an employee, but when you factor in the costs of running the show, you may be pleasantly surprised at what you make as a salon employee. Add in benefits, and it can be even more of an advantage.
The Radiance Advantage
For some free spirits, renting a chair is the way to go. But when you find the right salon, it makes sense to join as an employee on both a lifestyle and a financial level. With generous commissions and tips, you won’t be disappointed with what you’re taking home. You’ll get to spend your time doing what you love most – being a stylist. And with a fun and fabulous team and a high-end clientele, Radiance creates a professional environment that’s hard to match.