Your career as a hair technician
Starting your career as a hair extension technician is a popular way of gaining more freedom with your time, having the opportunity to work where you want and choose your own working hours. We offer some tips to consider when setting your career in hair extensions.
Being your own boss offers up many options to you: a hair extension technician can be self-employed, work part time or freelance: running your own salon, renting a space, working from home or running a ‘mobile salon’. Going mobile has the added benefit of reducing your overheads, and not having to deal with the burden of renting premises.
With more and more people investing time and money in their appearance, we see an increasing demand for hair extensions. Whether you want a completely new career, or simply boost your income, if you are a people person and enjoy learning new skills then a hair extension course is an investment for you.
Education and Qualifications
You don’t need to be a qualified hairdresser to become a hair extension technician, all you need to do is complete a certified hair extension course. There are many different methods in hair extension application:
- Micro rings
- Nano rings
- Pre bonded hot fusion
- Ultrasonic cold fusion
- Micro ring weft
- Skin weft tape
- Integrated sew-in weft
The courses cover the basic elements of fitting hair extensions, such as:
- Popular hair extension methods and their benefits: types of hair used, client suitability, etc.
- Client consultation methods and guidance
- In depth demonstration and practice covering the application technique of your chosen methods
- Colour matching and colour integration
- Correct product usage
- Hair extension finishes: blending, cutting, shaping
- Certification, insurance and trade discounts
One consideration is the equipment you will need to apply hair extensions. If you are intending to be mobile then the equipment will need to be portable. Remember that this is a popular and evolving industry so it’s important to keep up to date with the latest trends and products. Hair extensions are often inspired by celebrities so keep an eye out following any references made by your clients.
To give you an idea, once you have completed a hair extension course and depending on the method of hair extension application with Studio58 you will be given the following equipment to start you off:
- Hair extension heat connector
- Scalp protection shields
- Selection of hair sectioning clips
- Tail comb
- Hair razor
- Hair cutting scissors
- Specialist hair extension detangle brush
- Hair extension remover solution
- Micro ring application pliers
- Micro rings looper tool
- Selection of rings (depending on method)
- Nano ring fitting and removal tools
- Nano ring looper tool
- Carry bag for equipment
- Remy 100% human hair to use on course
- Discount trade account
This is a client-facing service, so being friendly, easy to talk to and professional is incredibly important in order to understand what your clients want, this will also go a long way to gaining a satisfied and loyal customer base.
Research the competition
If you plan on going mobile it’s important to research what your competitors are doing and how much they charge. Choose your target area and identify how far you are willing to travel for appointments and stick to this as good time management skills are vital – customers will get fed up if they are delayed.
Market your business
Your core demographic will be women, so social media is one of the best ways to get the most attention. Create an amazing Facebook and Twitter profile and include photos of your work, comments and feedback from happy customers, as well as style tips and get people engaged with you online.
It’s important to develop a marketing plan for your hair extension business, and identify the ideal customer base that you want to target, then talk about your services using the four P’s:
You need to be able to sell yourself to potential customers and convince them that you are the right one for the job, and that they can refer you to their friends – this can simply be managed by doing a good job for them. People tend to come back if you have done what they wanted to a high standard, and word of mouth is a powerful sales tool.
Make sure that you have marketing materials such as business cards, price lists and a website containing quality images of the service you offer, as well as contact information. You can hand out flyers to local businesses around the area you want to cover.
Look at events such as fashion shows or pamper parties, start out by volunteering your time to demonstrate your expertise, then offer incentives in order to entice clients back, such a free hair extension aftercare treatment for each repeat booking.
Most importantly, remember that you are your hair extension business’s advert – so you need to practice what you preach when it comes to having fabulous hair!
Manage your finances
If you’re going into business for yourself then it’s important to cover and protect your business with the right insurance. You will also need to look into registering yourself as self-employed with the Inland Revenue. You will be responsible for keeping all your records and receipts in order, and make sure you pay the correct amount of tax for your business. However there are small business software packages available to help you organise your paperwork and simplify the process.
Always make sure you’re insured. You will need public liability insurance which is only valid for a technician that has undergone a certified and accredited hair extension course, and will only cover the methods they were specifically trained in.
Whilst the thought of selling yourself might send shivers down your spine, you will need to do this in order to convince clients to come to you – however this can be done by simply doing a good job for them! People tend to come back if you have done what they wanted to a high standard, and word of mouth is a very powerful tool!
Make sure you have business cards, flyers and a website to support the hair extension application methods you provide and then hand them round the area that you want to target.
Most importantly, remember that you are your business’ advert, so make sure your hair looks fabulous!