Beauty Salons

Nov 2022


As with any business, owning and operating a beauty salon, hair salon or spa – or a combination of beautician services – can be a highly rewarding and thriving business opportunity, provided you are prepared for the associated risks. The market size for hair and nail salons in Canada is a $4.1 billion – a drop from 2019 when the market reached approximately $5.2 billion!

In 2022, there are 35,186 beauty salons; a .01% increase from 2021. The industry is growing at a rate of .04% per year; Ontario (15,617 businesses), Alberta (6,749 businesses) and British Columbia (6,688 businesses) are the provinces with the highest number of hair & nail salons in Canada.

Some advantages of operating a salon:

Ø With proper management, creative ideas and appropriate training, a beauty salon can operate for a lifetime;

Ø Maintaining high patronage is achievable with modest marketing, up-to-date services, solid training and implementing thoughtful customer retention strategies e.g. discounts, product samples, free manicures;

Ø There is high and growing demand for the services of a hairstylist, cosmetologist and other beauty and spa services;

On the flipside, there are challenges and there are ways to manage some of these issues and mitigate the risk to your business:

  • Ø Multiple service options such as tattoos, piercings, microblading, hair removal, skin pigment treatments, facials, massages and many, many others;
  • Ø Maintaining training for yourself and your staff is part of the cost of doing business and keeping up-to-date on trends, procedures and performing a cost-benefit-analysis to measure the adequate profitability is important maintaining an excellent reputation and a safe business. Scaling down to make procedures affordable imposes significant risk;
  • Ø Recruiting staff requires homework. Successful salon owners recognize the value in understanding the qualifications, certifications, as well as the amount of capital required to perform those services safely to avoid injury, financial loss or legal action;
  • Ø Regardless of how well trained a professional is, accidents happen, allergies can present, equipment can fail, people heal differently, infections can set-in and procedures can falter. Ensuring qualified, trained staff exercising best practices is essential;Ø Working with biological hazards, inflammable and toxic chemicals carry associated risks over and above skin irritation that require additional training for usage, storage, etc. Hairspray alone is hazardous on many levels and several products used by beauticians may be carcinogenic
  • Importantly, strict rules apply in Canada regarding certain procedures such as laser hair removal, injectable fillers, hot waxing, bleaching, hair straightening, etc. and customers must be made aware of your credentials and the risks involved; It is not uncommon for a beauty salon to serve dozens of customers every day; juggling customer service, individual customer needs, as well as health and safety measures;
  • Ø Given the growing number of procedures and the complexities associated with a high majority of salon procedures, insurance protection is vitally important.

Ø Selecting insurance that specializes in the coverage of the unique and growing services that most salons provide, including the salon environment, tools used and product contents are important considerations in the event of legal discord.

South Western Insurance Group Coverage Highlights:

Ø Limit up to $5,000,000 and $2,000,000 for Errors and Omissions (E&O);

Ø Coverage for entire shop(s), individual artist(s), and/or independent contractors;

Ø Coverage available for tattooing or piercing of minors – with options to include piercing of ears, nose, navel, eyebrows, and tongue;

Ø Coverage for dermal anchoring, surface piercing, ampallang and Apadravya;

Ø Competitive premiums;

Ø NIL deductible;

Ø Home based business when it’s in line with the law and government regulation;

Ø Commission to broker 15%.

South Western Insurance Group Coverage:

Includes but is not limited to the list below. Contact us if you don’t see what you are looking for.

  • Tattoo (permanent or temporary including henna);
  • Body Piercing;
  • Permanent makeup including Microblading;
  • Pigment Lightening Removal (Saline or Laser/IPL);
  • Beauty Professionals;
  • Laser Hair Removal, also includes removal of age spots, sun spots & liver spots;
  • Claims Made Policy.

NOTE: SWG Professional Liability (PL) for Beauticians and Beauty Salon Owners: Tattoo & Body Piercing/Beauty Operations Liability insurance is offered Canada-wide as a combined Errors and Omission (E&O) and Commercial General Liability (CGL) insurance coverage for Tattoo, Body Piercing, Permanent-Makeup Artists, as well as Beauty Salon OperationsVisit: for more information.

Content is current as of the date of publication and is subject to change without notice.


Industry Statistics – Canada – Hair & Nail Salon – Market Size

The Beauty of Business in Canada – Business Chief

Hair & nail salons in Canada – Industry Market Research Report – September 2022