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​Is the Nail Business Worth It? Here’s How to Make Money

So, you like doing nails – all the procedures involving nails. But at the same time, you want to make a living out of it. Your passion is not everything if you cannot monetize it. The good news is you can make a decent living out of it, and it makes a good career if you follow the right steps.

Making money in a nail salon is fairly simple if you follow some rules and stay consistent – you need quality results, dedication, the right tools, and word of mouth. Now, what are the most important things to know in order to turn this hobby into a career?

Invest in quality

Most nail professionals tend to upsell their services. Unfortunately, not all of them raise the expectations. While the initial result may look alright, chipping nails is the most common problem out there.

The point? Invest in quality. Opt for quality polish products and paint. Invest in a professional machine to dry the polish with UV rays. Everything you need must be qualitative. The good news is you will not need major investment, but at the same time, avoid going cheap.

Consider nail salon equipment financing if you cannot afford quality stuff, rather than make a compromise.

Be honest about everything

Whether you get a question by email, over the phone, or face to face, make sure you talk to the customer before starting the service. The idea to add more services while you are already halfway through will put pressure on them. Even if they say yes, you may never get to see them again.

Just because you think someone needs an extra treatment or service for their nails, it does not mean that you need to enforce them. Instead, be perfectly honest upfront and let them know that they can say no. A good chat before starting the service will prevent all sorts of unpleasant and awkward situations.

Popular time slots are more expensive

By time slot, you need to think about the season too. You can charge a bit more around the winter holidays because you will be busy, but you can also figure out which daily or weekly time slots are more popular and charge a bit more.

You will notice that you are normally busier after 5PM on weekdays, as well as around noon time on weekends. Do not do it if you do not have customers, but only as you get in demand and your customers end up queuing up.

Look for high quality customers

It is one thing to start a nail salon in an underdeveloped or rough area where posh customers are less likely to hang around and a different thing to start a salon in a high-rated neighborhood. With these thoughts in mind, it might pay off opening up in a decent area.

You should also know that posh and fancy clients are more likely to pay a bit more – assuming you provide high-quality standards, of course. Then, recurring clients provide consistency, and word of mouth will help your business grow.

Even if your place is not in the best spot in town, you can still consider advertising and marketing to high-rated areas – think about rich housewives who have nothing else to do all day but spend time in all kinds of beauty salons.

Make payments a breeze

Imagine having a customer over, doing nails, and then asking for cash only. In a world where more and more people choose cards – and especially contactless technology, asking for cash will put many customers off.

People want convenience these days. They do not want to walk or drive to the nearest cash machine to get the money for your service. Instead, they want to unlock their smartphones and tap your card machine.

Provide more payment solutions – even online payments – and your customers will appreciate the convenience.

Consider mobile nail services

This service will imply some extra costs – such as fuel or perhaps your time. But then, mobile nail services make a good choice when you are just starting, and you need customers. People will love the convenience – getting their nails done in the comfort of their own homes.

Make sure you get a mobile case and bring all the stuff over. Just because you are mobile, it does not mean that you can compromise on quality. Instead, provide the exact same service – plus, you can charge more for going to the customer’s house. After all, it is a premium service.

Make sure the price covers the expenses on time and fuel too. Also, it might be a good idea to stick to particular areas only, rather than driving around in zig-zags over a large area. You will waste too much time – and you will inevitably lose money as well.


As a short final conclusion, small tips and tricks can help you make more money as a nail technician. Indeed, it is not the type of career to skyrocket overnight. You may have to start with friends only. But as you build a clientele, you will be surprised by how profitable it can become.

This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases from and other Amazon websites.

Written by Ellie

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