Topline revenues for all salon industry services (hair, skin, nails) plus salon retail grew only 1.8% to $64.3 billion, according to the new 2018 Professional Salon Industry Haircare Study from Professional Consultants & Resources, the leading salon industry consultants and comprehensive data source. Around 257,000 salons and barbershops in the United States used or sold professional hair care products. Salon count declined minimally, as the closure of traditional, commission-based salons slowed and large salon suites opened.

Most notably, Henkel vaulted over Coty to obtain the second place ranking in sales, second only to L’Oréal Professional. Overall, the top eight companies in professional sales were L’Oréal Professional; Henkel; Coty Professional; John Paul Mitchell Systems; Estée Lauder; Unilever; Revlon Professional and Kao. 

“The state of our salon industry is still weak and in a very low-growth mode, due to a complex multiplicity of factors, said Cyrus Bulsara, President, Professional Consultants & Resources.

The “Salon Suites Tsunami” has driven salon retail to Amazon and other e-commerce platforms, as well as Ulta Beauty and mass-retail diversion. Growth of hair color—still the anchor service—has slowed to 3%, due to lower salon visit frequencies and women who are concerned about chemical services or prefer the natural gray-, silver- or white-hair look. Major M&A activity and line integration at Coty and Henkel still created down-stocking and distribution realignments.

Hair coloring remains a vital anchor service at U.S. salons, attracting clients for all other services like cuts, styles, perms and straighteners. Hair-coloring services grew 3%, primarily due to an aging population, demanding gray-coverage and young adults’ needs for fashion color like blonding, highlights, baby-lights, balayage, sombrés and shadow roots. Cutting and styling grew only 1.8%, as client visit frequencies continued decreasing, and more cuts were performed at lower-priced family-economy chains and rentals. Blow-dry bars grew robustly at 25% in both revenues and locations. New color touch-up bars emerged.

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