The surge in popularity of the laser hair removal market has been exponential over the last two decades. Back in 1996, it was MIT graduate, Dr. Anderson, who first discovered it was possible to damage the stem cells inside the hair follicles by targeting specific chromophores with laser technology. Since its initial success and approval by the United States Food and Drug Administration in 1997, its popularity has only continued to grow.
In comparison to the more traditional means of removing unwanted hair by shaving or waxing, laser hair removal is a more effective and fuss-free solution. Which is why more and more people are turning to the industry every day—even the male half of our nation! Men now make up an average 17% of beauty clinic visitors seeking out the hair removal treatment. According to the International Master Course of Ageing Skin (IMCAS), the hair removal industry is expected to be worth over £2.19bn in the UK by 2019. These are the kind of numbers every savvy hair and beauty salon should be looking to tap into and build a target audience from.
Only The Best?
While it continues to provide quick and effective results, there is still a certain amount of fear-mongering in the industry about the usage of laser hair removal. As someone who has put in years of consistent market research to stay aligned with the best machines in the industry, my advice to anyone looking to buy laser hair removal technology is this:
Yes, you may save money buying second-hand. Yes, the insurance cost will be less on a cheaper machine. And yes, you could buy the machine directly from abroad to cut out the middleman and lower the import cost. But all these options have only one thing in common, they are deceptive in their cost-effectiveness. As the old saying goes, “Buy cheap, buy twice.”
Value Vs Quality
Buying a cheap and inferior laser hair removal machine is a false economy. On the surface, it may seem the wiser business move to be prudent with the cost of such an investment. When it comes to technology of this level though, you are far better to set your business up correctly from the beginning.
Here are the top 4 reasons why choosing the cheapest laser hair removal machine will cost you a lot more money in the long run:
No after sales service:
With second-hand or lower quality machines, you run the risk of having no after sales service. If your machine runs into issues or breaks down, you need this support to get back up and running. Rescheduling appointments with unhappy clients will prove costly too if you have to delay treatments due to machine failure.
Service and breakdown costs:
With no warranty or after sales support, the cost of any breakdowns will be significant and could prove expensive to your company’s bottom line. You may be able to set up a service contract with the original manufacturer for a second-hand machine, but bear in mind, the costs of maintenance and repair work in terms of time and money will be much higher for an older machine. The ‘bargain’ may not prove to be one in the long run.
Training and Certificate expenses:
If you buy a laser hair removal machine from a UK distributor, the machine they provide will come with full training, complete market literature, and a Manufacturer’s Certificate. Registering with your local authorities demands all of these requirements. Take this into consideration if you are thinking of purchasing a machine from abroad; it may not come with these as standard.
The latest technology:
With new machines, comes new upgrades. Consider the cost of being behind the times to the rest of the market. When you are thinking of buying second-hand machines. Service contracts include free upgrades when new technology is available which will allow you to stay ahead of the curve for your clients.
Take Into Consideration
When it comes to buying a laser hair removal machine. The most important factor is to buy the right brand for your clients. Don’t forget to take into account the characteristics of your target market and the services you want to offer. Discuss these with your supplier to work out which will work best for your business.
In my experience, financing is the easiest solution to meeting the investment cost of a quality laser hair removal machine. The average cost of a laser hair machine can range from between 40,000 to £60,000. Paying in installments, over time, allows you to free up money for your business’s other overheads and other salon essentials. You can, for example, choose to finance a machine over three years then pay a month’s premium at the end for the machine to become yours. Any interest paid is tax deductible and you can also claim the depreciation on your tax returns.
It’s crucial to note that the costs involved with buying laser hair removal machines. Do not stop after the initial purchase. Registering your machine with the local authorities and insurance are both significant after sales expenses that should be factored into your business investment equation. For more information on what you need to do to register your new salon laser equipment with the correct government authorities, check out the full requirements here.
With the continued introduction and development of new technologies and treatments, the beauty industry is always changing. However, one constant remains the same; laser hair removal. Be savvy and tap into this thriving market today.
Manroop Ahitan is the CEO and successful beauty salon franchisor of CoLaz Advanced Beauty Specialists. She brings over 15 years of wisdom and experience in the hair and beauty industry to the brand name. Now the owner of 9 franchise salons dotted around the lower Southeast of England. Manroop also founded the Beaulaz Training Centre; a VTCT approved beauty and laser training school in Birmingham.