It’s time nail technicians take charge and start charging for their services. As a nail tech, salon owner, and consultant with Summit Salon Business Center, I often see nail techs struggling with charging clients what they should for their time and services. They also feel uncomfortable talking about add-on services and additional charges. We need to get over the fear of rejection and that we may cost too much.

Here are some of the challenges I have heard, followed by suggestions to help you feel more confident charging for everything and offering additional services.

“What if they say no or turn me down? Then there’s that awkward silence. What do I do then?”

Then they say no. That is all that happens. It’s not the end of your career. You’re not a failure! When we go to a restaurant and our server asks if we want dessert or another drink and we say no, is that weird? Do we feel bad? No, we don’t feel bad — nor does the server — we just move on. Same scenario here. The truth is, we will probably hear “no” more often than “yes.” However, we will never get the “yes” if we never ask.

“I have never charged them before — how do I start charging them now?”

Be honest with your client. Explain it to her: “It has been brought to my attention that I have been giving you _____ service without charging you. Although I know you really enjoy ____ service, the next time you want a _____, I have to charge you $____.” Simply state it and let her decide if she wants the service next time. Believe me, our clients know that they have been given “special treatment” and they will understand.

“I ALWAYS get turned down, so I stopped offering additional services.”

It may feel like you are always getting turned down, but the reality is you probably got some clients to say yes. The number of clients you have will be greater than the number of clients who will say yes. Read that again and store it in your brain; it will make you feel better.

“I don’t want my clients to get mad at me; what if they get mad at me for asking?”

How can they get mad at you for asking? If your clients says, “Why are you asking me?” I respond, “I just want to make sure that you are aware of your options.” Minimize it and move on.

“None of the other nail technicians or stylists charge for _____, why should I?”

Set a salon policy and enforce it. If everyone is doing it together, it’s much easier to implement. At your next team meeting, discuss what the salon policy will be for repairs. For example: For every fill, we will give clients one complimentary repair, after that we will charge them $_____ for each additional repair. Give your clients a month’s notice.

Remember you deserve to make a good living! You are a licensed professional. You went to school, you studied hard and passed exams, making you a licensed nail technician. You are worth the price of your services and you should charge for them accordingly. Don’t let anyone stop you from paying your bills or chasing your dreams. You owe it to yourself.

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