High-End Salon Business Is Nearing Its End?

 

Traditional salon business is struggling. Sprawling salons with fancy addresses owned by celebrity stylists are on their way to extinction if they don’t evolve. Gone are the days where the salon was the one-stop shop for all beauty needs. Better, faster, more affordable options have taken significant market share, leaving high-end salons struggling to compete and cover their overhead.

The slow death of the high-end salon:

  1. Deal Chasing – Services like Gilt, Groupon, and LifeBooker gave smaller salons offering steep discounts a competitive edge, taking business from higher-end salons.
  2. DIY – YouTube and Instagram how-to content replaced the advice and guidance of high-end stylists.
  3. Beauty Bars – Hyper-focused boutiques specializing in facials, brows, waxing, blowouts, and lashes for a fraction of the cost.
  4. On Demand – Where you want it, when you want it services appeal to the Uber generation.
  5. Salon Culture – Approximately 60 percent of hairstylists are freelance, and salons have a reputation for being mismanaged and run poorly. On the other side of the equation, startups like Dry bar and Glam squad continually invest in stylist education and technology.

Racked summarizes it best, “If Dry bar is known for easy, flawless blowouts and Glam-squad is reliable for fast, at-home services, what do the hundreds of local salons have left to offer customers?” One thing is certain: the traditional salon model needs to evolve or high-end salons will become extinct.

Ignorance and Lack Of Over Sight From Probeauty (PBA) They Will Let The States Handle It

Realhairtruth.com

Compelled to work endless hours just to get by, the manicurists live lives that spool almost entirely within the walls of their salons. An underground economy has sprung up in Flushing and other city neighborhoods where salon workers live, to help them cope. On weekdays, women walk from door to door like Pied Pipers, taking nail salon workers’ children to school for a fee. Many manicurists pay caregivers as much as half their wages to take their babies six days a week, 24 hours a day, after finding themselves unable to care for them at night and still wake up to paint nails.  Jing Ren usually spent days sleeping in her slim pallet a few feet from the bed of her 24-year-old cousin, Xue Sun, also a manicurist. She had no time to make other friends.  She eventually started taking English classes, hoping to grasp onto a new life, but she feared the gravitational pull of this one.  “I would feel petrified,” she said, “thinking that I’ll be doing this for the rest of my life.”

Low Prices, Low Pay

As far as small businesses go, it is relatively easy to open a nail salon.  Just a few thousand dollars is needed for things like pedicure chairs with whirlpool baths. Little English is required, and there are few licensing hoops to jump through. Many skip them altogether. Overhead is minimal: rent and some new bottles of polish each month — and the rock-bottom wages of workers.  Beyond the low barriers for entry, manicurists, owners and others who have closely followed the nail industry are hard pressed to say definitively why salons have proliferated.  In the 1990s, nail polish brands began to market more directly to consumers, helping to fuel demand, according to Nails Magazine. Polishes also became more sophisticated; they last longer and are easier to remove.  Census data show the number of salons in New York surged through the 2000s, far outstripping the rest of the country. Growth dimmed slightly during the recession, as lacquered nails remained an affordable treat for many, before climbing again.

But as nail salons have mushroomed, it has become harder to turn a profit, some owners said. Manicure prices have not budged much from 1990s levels, according to veteran workers. Neither have wages.  With their gleaming glass fronts, the salons seem to display their inner workings as transparently as a department store displays a holiday window. But much of how salons operate and how workers are treated is kept deliberately opaque to the outside world.  Among the hidden customs are how new manicurists get started. Most must hand over cash — usually $100 to $200, but sometimes much more — as a training fee. Weeks or months of work in a kind of unpaid apprenticeship follows.  Ms. Ren spent almost three months painting on pedicures and slathering feet with paraffin wax before one afternoon in the late summer when her boss drew her into a waxing room and told her she would finally be paid.

“I just burst into laughter unconsciously,” Ms. Ren said. “I have been working for so long while making zero money; now finally my hard work paid off.”

That night her cousins threw her a party. The next payday she learned her day wage would amount to under $3 an hour.

Step into the prim confines of almost any salon and workers paid astonishingly low wages can be readily found. At May’s Nails Salon on 14th Street in the West Village of Manhattan, where a photo of the singer Gwen Stefani with a manicurist hung on the wall, new employees must pay $100, then work unpaid for several weeks, before they are started at $30 or $40 a day, according to a worker. A man who identified himself as the owner, but would give his name only as Greg, said the salon did not charge employees for their jobs, but would not say how much they are paid.

At Sona Nails on First Avenue near Stuyvesant Town, a worker said she made $35 a day. Sona Grung, the owner of Sona Nails, denied paying below minimum wage, yet defended the practice, particularly of underpaying new workers. “When a beginner comes in, they don’t know anything, and they give you a job,” she said. “If you work in a nail salon for $35, it’s very good.”

Nail salon workers are generally considered “tipped workers” under state and federal labor laws. Employers in New York are permitted to pay such workers slightly less than the state’s $8.75 minimum hourly wage, based on a complex calculation of how much a worker is making in tips. But interviews with scores of workers revealed rates of pay so low that the so-called tip calculation is virtually meaningless. None reported receiving supplemental pay from their bosses, as is legally required when their day’s tips fall short of the minimum wage. Overtime pay is almost unheard-of in the industry, even though workers routinely work up to 12 hours a day, six or even seven days a week.

Inside the hive of the salon, there are typically three ranks of workers. “Big Job” employees are veterans, experts at sculpting false nails out of acrylic dust. It is the most lucrative salon job, yet many younger manicurists avoid it because of the specter of serious health issues, including miscarriages and cancer, associated with inhaling fumes and clouds of plastic particles. “Medium Job” workers do regular manicures, while “Little Job” is the category of the beginners. They launder hot hand towels and sweep toenail clippings. They do work others do not want to do, such as pedicures.

Beauty Industry Schemes

realhairtruth.com

Historically, women darkened their lashes with everything from elderberries to resin, but mascara Products did not emerge until the 20th century when T.L. Williams founded Maybelline. The brand’s popular 10-cent mascara swept the nation. While makeup had once been considered immoral by some, Hollywood  actress’s made it glamorous. Women were promised the sultry eyelash’s of there favorite actress, as in this advertisement from a 1929 “Motion Picture” magazine:

realhairtruth.com

As more mascara products emerged, companies began making numerous claims about the lengthening and volumizing effects of their products. Major cosmetic companies have come under fire for misleading advertising methods, like using false eyelash’s on models.

Even so, the quest for longer lashes has grown into a full-fledged beauty and pharmaceutical market.  “Five years ago, the lashes you had were the lashes you had and you threw mascara on. Today, you’re getting extensions, your eyelashes could always use another millimeter or two, right?

In The Beauty Industry The Scum Always Rises To The Top

The Real Hair Truth.com

U.S. Department of Education Takes Enforcement Against Two School Ownership Groups!

Office of Federal Student Aid issues letters denying re certification applications for Title IV eligibility to several Marinello Schools of Beauty and Computer Systems Institute locations
February 1, 2016
As part of the Obama Administration’s ongoing commitment to protect students and increase accountability and transparency in higher education, the U.S. Department of Education is taking action to end the participation in the federal student financial assistance programs of 23 Marinello Schools of Beauty (Marinello) campuses in Nevada and California and three Computer Systems Institute (CSI) campuses in Illinois.

Investigations by the Department’s Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) uncovered serious violations within both institutions. The Department determined that CSI submitted false job placement rates to its students, the Department, and its national ac-creditor, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS). The Department determined that Marinello was knowingly requesting Federal aid for students based on invalid high school diplomas, under awarding Title IV aid to students, charging students for excessive overtime, and engaging in other acts of misrepresentation.

“Our students depend on higher education institutions to prepare them for careers through a quality education. Unfortunately, some schools violate their trust through deceptive marketing practices and defraud taxpayers by giving out student aid inappropriately. These unscrupulous institutions use questionable business practices or outright lie to both students and the federal government,” said Under Secretary Ted Mitchell. “In these cases we are taking aggressive action to protect students and taxpayers from further harm by these institutions.”

The Department is denying pending recertification applications for five Marinello locations covering 23 campuses in five cities and enrolling about 2,100 active students.

The campuses are:

  • Las Vegas, Nevada (2 Locations; 209 active students)
  • Los Angeles, California (14 locations; 1,277 active students)
  • Burbank, California (2 locations; 255 active students)
  • Moreno Valley, California (2 locations; 115 active students)
  • Sacramento, California (3 locations; 244 active students)

In addition, the Department previously placed all Marinello schools on Heightened Cash Monitoring 2, which is a step taken by FSA to provide additional oversight of institutions to safeguard taxpayer dollars.

The Department is also denying a pending re certification application from CSI, which enrolls about 2,600 active students.

The letters to the Marinello schools and CSI provide an opportunity for the institutions to submit factual evidence to dispute the Department’s findings. The Marinello schools have until February 16, 2016, to submit such evidence; CSI has until February 12, 2016, to do so. If submitted evidence causes the Department to change its determination, the schools could be able to continue participating in the federal financial aid programs.

The entire Marinello school chain – with 56 campuses across the nation – received more than $87 million in Pell Grants and federal loans for the 2014–15 award year.

Collectively, CSI campuses received approximately $20 million in federal funding for the 2014-15 award year.

For more information about today’s action, please visit StudentAid.gov/sa/about/announcements/marinello and StudentAid.gov/sa/about/announcements/csi.

7 Ways The Beauty Industry Convinced Women That They Weren’t Good Enough

Jotovi Designs Inc

In America, the perennial quest for beauty is an expensive one.

Every year, women spend billions of dollars in exchange for beautiful hair, lovely lashes, and smooth and silky skin. Still, many of our culture’s most common beauty procedures were virtually nonexistent a century ago. The truth is, many of our expectations of feminine beauty were shaped in large part by modern advertisers. We’ve tracked the history behind some of the most common “flaws” that besiege the modern woman and the surprising stories behind their “cures.”

1. “Your natural hair color isn’t pretty enough.”

“Does she or doesn’t she?” asked the Clairol’s ad that launched a million home hair dye jobs. Indeed, the aggressive Clairol Marketing would trigger an explosion in sales. In the process, the percentage of women dyeing their hair would skyrocket from 7 percent to more than 40 percent in the ’70s.

The ads showed everyday women reaping the benefits of more lustrous hair, a luxury that had long been exclusive to glamorous supermodels with professional dye jobs. The ads proclaimed, “If I have only one life, let me live it as a blonde.” Indeed, Clairol peddled the perfect yellow shade of the dye as a way to transform your life:

realhairtruth.com

Clairol hair dye offered self reinvention, in 20 minutes flat, particularly for women who didn’t want to reveal their true age or grey roots.

realhairtruth.com

Shirley Polykoff, the advertising writer behind Clairol’s goldmine campaign, described her plan as such: “For big success, we’d have to expand the market to gather in all those ladies who had become stoically resigned to [their gray hair]. This could only be accomplished by reawakening whatever dissatisfaction’s they may have had when they first spotted it.” Clairol did that with ads like, “How long has it been since your husband asked you out to dinner?” Nowadays, about 90 million women in the U.S. color their hair.

 

Retail Regulation In The Cosmetic Industry

real hair truth
The $71 billion personal care product industry in the United States is largely unregulated, and retailers are stepping up to fill the void.

When retailers adopt policies on the safety of the products they sell, it’s called retail regulation.

There is a rich history of retailers using their purchasing power to effect positive market change.
In 2008, when Walmart—the world’s largest retailer—agreed to stop selling baby bottles, sippy cups and sports water bottles made with BPA, it forced manufacturers to reformulate in order to keep selling to this retail giant.
More and more retailers are adopting store wide policies governing the safety of their beauty products, with Whole Foods leading the way by implementing a basic chemical safety screening for all its personal care products and adopting a restricted-substances list made up of more than 400 chemicals prohibited from products bearing its premium standards labels.
In 2008 CVS stepped up to the plate by adopting a store-wide policy prohibiting the use of certain
toxic chemicals in their store-brand baby products. Walgreen’s and Target followed suit in 2013 by
announcing they would develop and adopt comprehensive cosmetic safety policies to govern the
safety of the private-label and national brands they carry.
The following goals should guide retailers’ policies and practices to improve the safety of personal
care products sold in their stores:
Expand the sale of safer cosmetics and personal care products (products free of chemicals
linked to cancer, birth defects, developmental harm and other health concerns).
Adopt a list of chemicals that are banned from use in private-label and national brands sold
in their stores, and ensure that toxic chemicals are replaced with safer alternatives.
Reformulate private-label products to eliminate chemicals of concern.
Practice the highest level of transparency by sharing the company’s safe-cosmetics policy,
practices and progress on websites and in corporate responsibility reports.
Strive for continuous improvements in policies and practices by monitoring scientific
research regarding emerging chemicals of concern.
Federal Regulations
Major loopholes in federal law allow the cosmetics industry to put virtually any chemical into a
cosmetic or personal care product with no pre-market FDA safety testing or review, no monitoring
of health effects, and inadequate labeling requirements. Most of us assume the FDA regulates
these products just as it does food and drugs to assure safety. In fact, cosmetics are one of the least
regulated consumer products available to the public. To make matters worse, contaminants in a
finished cosmetic product that occur as by-products of the manufacturing process, by law, don’t
have to be listed on the product label. That means chemicals like PFOA can hide in a cosmetic or
personal care product without consumers knowing.
The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act (FFDCA) includes 112 pages of standards for food and
drugs, but just a single page for cosmetics. The cosmetics title of the FFDCA, which has not been
amended significantly since it was enacted more than 77 years ago, provides virtually no power to
perform even the most rudimentary functions to ensure product safety in an estimated $71 billion
cosmetic industry.
Fortunately, for the first time in 77 years, Congress could close the gaping holes in our outdated
federal law and give the FDA the statutory authority and resources it needs to effectively regulate
the safety of cosmetics and personal care products. Currently, Congress is considering two bills to
regulate cosmetics ingredients.
The Senate
On April 20, 2015, Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) introduced the
Personal Care Products Safety Act of 2015, an important bill with the potential to give the cosmetics
industry a desperately needed makeover. Many strong provisions in the bill would advance the
FDA’s ability to protect consumers from unsafe chemicals in cosmetics and personal care products:
Requiring companies to register their facilities, products and ingredients with the FDA;
Closing labeling loopholes by requiring full ingredient disclosure for professional salon
products and web-based sales of cosmetic products; and
Directing the FDA to assess the safety of a minimum of five cosmetics chemicals a year.
However, the bill falls short of what is needed. Ideally, federal regulation would put in place a robust
safety standard and elevate the rigor of ingredient safety reviews by the FDA and manufacturers to
ensure that cosmetics and personal care products are as safe as possible

Coty Will Acquire Procter & Gamble’s Beauty Brands

The Real Hair Truth

Coty Will Acquire Procter & Gamble’s Beauty Brands

Procter & Gamble has been looking to streamline its massive portfolio of brands, looking to sell, spin off, or shut down the majority of them. Last night, the unofficial news came out that many of the company’s beauty brands sold to competitor Coty, which means that Cover Girl and Clairol will be run by another drugstore cosmetics veteran.

Coty may not be a name that you recognize, but the cosmetics conglomerate owns a wide variety of brands: they sell branded fragrances for everyone from Beyoncé to Playboy to Vespa (yes, the scooter company). Their best-known brand is probably nail care products sold under the name Sally Hansen (who was not a real person) but they also own higher-prestige brands like OPI (nail care) and Philosophy (skin care).

Coty isn’t in the hair care business, so acquiring hair color brands like Clairol and Wella would introduce them to a new market. They are, however, already selling products to salons: OPI sells nail polishes and supplies to pros as well as directly to consumers.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer estimates that the acquisition would double Coty’s annual sales. The brands included in the deal are Cover Girl, Max Factor (which remains popular in Europe, but is no longer sold here) and the two hair color brands, Clairol and Wella. P&G would hold on to its brands that revolve around soap and shampoo, like Aussie, Old Spice, and Pantene.

There are other bidders in the mix, including private-equity firms and other soap companies, so this deal isn’t finalized yet. Some sources are also reporting that Coty won the bid for Procter & Gamble’s fragrance brands.