Growing rapidly in all areas of the country except the Northeast, booth rental salons have increased their share of market. It is estimated that 30 to 35 percent of all U.S. salons now engage in some form of booth rental operation, either under single or joint ownership/management. This growth is fuelling sales of hair color and all hair care products at freestanding beauty stores like Sally Beauty and is responsible for the expansion of professional-only, full-service distributor stores like those under Sally Beauty Systems Group and L’Oréal’s Beauty Alliance.
In the consumer-oriented beauty market of the Southwest, the opening of upscale booth rental salons housing 20 to 40 professionals is driving growth in volume and revenue. From Texas to California, these nouveau independents offer consumer-pleasing one-stop beauty with a mix of hair, skin, nail, body and cosmetics services. In these areas, booth renters have created and led hair coloring service price increases of between five to seven percent.
With their sophisticated decor, these salons are raising the bar for the client experience at an affordable pricepoint. Their independent stylists generally possess more hair color experience than the youthful staff at the value-positioned salon chains, and are drawing from their client segment, with most of the large chains seeing a slowing of their same-store service revenue growth.
At the high end, salons use color to communicate the artistry and expertise of their staff, much as the “$400 hair cut” positioned Manhattan salons as the best of the best. Urban, celebrity-serving salons have prompted consumer acceptance of color services at $300 and higher.
Permanent hair color remained one of the largest growing segments in 2007, due to strong and increasing demand for gray coverage by an aging population. Fashion colors and the use of
highlift products for blonding and highlights for young adults are other major growth drivers.
In 2007, dollar shipments of permanent hair color in both liquid and crème/gel form together total $343 million and constitute 53 percent of hair color sales.
Color by Numbers
|Segments—2007||$s-Millions||% of Total|
|Permanents — creme||194||30.1|
|Permanents — liquids||149||23.1|
Crèmes and gels constitute 30.1 percent of the category and permanent liquids contribute 23.1 percent. Crèmes and gels have now surpassed liquids, reflecting a shift among U.S. hair colorists to these platforms, which are the preferred form of hair color in Europe. Ease of application appears to be the major factor in the move away from liquids.