Keeping Product Costs Down

Product costs are a big contributor when it comes to making a department non profitable. As I stated in my last post,"Is Your Nail Department Profitable?", many owners have a lot of their money tied up in products. In several of the salons I have visited, I have found out that nail techs beg the owners to get certain product lines or particular scents. The techs belief is that if they get those products or scents, more clients will come to the salon. So the owner gets talked into it and invests a boatload of money in a product line or scent. Usually the nail techs talk about the new products/scent for a month or so. Then after that sales dwindle and the product barely gets used anymore. It goes to waste or rots in a cupboard somewhere. This makes some owners apprehensive to make investments in new products or new scents.


My first piece of advice is to start using up all of that product we have sitting around. If the products are in good condition and not past the expiration date, start using them up. Incorporate them into your services to get rid of them without wasting them. I always encourage a nail department to use up all of the existing products before purchasing new ones.  Your owners will be happy about this too.


To help with the reordering process, make sure that every product has a home. Start by organizing your professional products. Clean out all of your supply areas, set aside the products you need to use up, and start organizing the products you have. Label everything and place a label on the shelf where the products will be stored. When refilling products or putting products away, make sure you always return it to its labeled home. This will help to keep products costs down and then every staff member will know where to look for each product.


Also, make list for reordering. When you run out or notice that a product is getting low, write it down. This makes it easier for the person who does the ordering. Cross it off the list when your department receives it. This assures that it doesn't get ordered again. Your owner will be impressed and it shows that you are taking responsibility for the nail department.


How much of a product are you using per service? When you portion out the products you are going to use for a pedicure or manicure, do you use it all up or is there some left over only to be thrown away after the service? Take only what you need and use it all up. Which product is wasted most often? Pedicure scrub! Most manufacturers recommend the size of a dime per foot to exfoliate. The majority of scrubs are sugar or salt based. You should use less. If you use too much scrub, the sugar/salt will not properly exfoliate. You may just be pushing around the oil or gel that contains the sugar/salt. If you use more product than what is recommended, you won't get a noticeable exfoliation.


You may also be wondering why your pedicure tubs have a ring of oil around them or why there is so much gunk when you try to clean the tub. Too much scrub is being used!  Use less and you'll see the difference in your exfoliation and when cleaning the tub.


Last week, I talked about how Summit Salon Consulting Group recommends that 15% of your salons income should be service and retail sales from the nail department. My nail department hovers around 32%!  This means when the salon generates $100,000, my nail department was responsible for $32,000 in revenue. The consulting company asked me "Why are your numbers so much higher than other salons? What are you doing that is so different?" I know what is making us different. This is why I get to travel to salons all over the U.S. and Canada. I share with salons/spas what I have learned growing my nail department to 32%. I teach them how to grow their income, increase profits, and build money generating nail departments. E-mail me at [email protected] for more information on how consulting in your salon can help you take your nail department to the next level!


Keeping professional products cost down, exercising portion control, and organizing your products — one more way to help you stand out above the rest and become the BEST!

— Jill


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