I'm intrigued by your blog entries as I too have a vision to open my own shop, but with a bit of a twist. My big question is money. Were you able to front most of the money or did you have investors? If you had investors, how did you find them and present your situation? My idea (which I'm protecting at the moment) is something that could be integrated with a current salon set up with a few accommodations. If I were to approach a current salon, do you think I would have to come in with money also (besides adding my products/or cost to make accommodations) or would the salon owners accept a cut of earnings and basically "rent" my space? What's your take on this?
I'm happy you took the time to read our blog. I'm not sure I have the right answer but here goes. I understand your desire to protect your idea, and that's smart to a point. Most successful entrepreneurs trusted someone with knowledge in their product and either made them partners or paid consultants to get things off the ground.
As far as money, having and being willing to put in your own capital shows faith in your idea so, if possible, making as much of an investment as is comfortable would be positive. If you're going to need investors the first thing is a solid business plan, something that explains your product/service with enough knowledge to make someone feel comfortable with investing. I would start with family and friends who know and believe in you before trying to involve strangers. Also you can draw up a simple non-disclosure agreement to help protect your idea.
Not knowing the scope of your idea makes it a little difficult to give advice, but what I can tell you is most successful people get that by taking a leap of faith and trusting in knowledgeable people for support and ideas. It might just take you partnering with a salon to test your idea and see if it works as well in practice as in theory. I hope that helps. Thanks again for writing.