Boss Lady

How women are driving a thriving beauty industry


With just a few taps or clicks on any device, consumers in today’s thriving beauty industry can land in the delightful world of the “Beauty Influencer.” She is market savvy and on trend. She touts niche products from her own business, or giant name brands want her to market theirs. Maybe she promotes beauty on the inside and out, guiding her viewers via a yoga video. She is a CEO with a legacy in the beauty industry, such as Revlon’s Debra Perelman, or she is a CEO creating a legacy for new generations, such as Rihanna with Fenty Beauty Cosmetics. Loyal followers and dedicated teams trust her to help change their lives, one glorious product or service at a time.

Licensed cosmetologists, certified estheticians and nail care professionals are fixtures of neighborhoods, cities and towns everywhere. These smart girls next door and tenacious shop owners remain the backbone of all the enormous opportunities the beauty industry presents. As brick-and-mortar stores dot the beauty landscape, online avenues grant entrepreneurs wider bases and consumers more choices than ever before. Retail operators and salon owners can expand their services beyond in-store patrons to consult clients and teach methods online. Online retailers and influencers can grow followings and move their live services into demand — meeting fans at pop-ups and conferences.

This puts beauty industry entrepreneurs, executives and influencers in powerful but fluctuating positions. With so many options and ways to serve consumers, even the best-laid businesses and most proven careers require nimble outlooks to thrive. Both time-tested and novel strategies are pointing new or veteran beauty industry professionals and companies to more reach than ever.

Women are finding social media influence works

No one has to wait to hit a high profit margin or follower count to wield influence. A 2019 Influencer Marketing Global Survey from Rakuten Marketing found major brands are just as likely to pay “micro-influencers” (people with a few thousand followers) as celebrities to expose their products. Famous endorsers are more commonplace than they were before online content proliferated. A natural response made the “everyday woman’s” opinion grow in value, for authenticity behind her opinions and voice matter to followers. These followers may trust her ideas more than a remote public figure’s they may not identify with.

The vast community surrounding the beauty industry is its most empowering asset. This world shares tips and ideas as well as fun when it is needed most. Who hasn’t found that a salon visit resolves stress or a quandary when a warm stylist or massage therapist is willing to hear all about it? Who doesn’t dream of a pampering group spa day to celebrate weddings, birthdays and big moments? As more people meet new friends and partners online, popular online groups and social media profiles keep bustling activity and conversation going in the industry.

Smart industry leaders are insuring in real life and online

Confidence goes far. Serving patrons makes the days adventurous but sometimes unpredictable. Accidents and complaints — even lawsuits — face owners in all industries. The importance of having beauty insurance with the proper licenses and certifications cannot be underestimated. Women have fueled a unique insurance sector especially for beauty industry professionals to protect their livelihoods and reputations. For more information on Beauty Insurance Plus, click here.

Today’s consumers have enormous options to rate and review businesses they patronize or products they take a chance on. And their own social media profiles are always ready and willing sounding boards. All industries require a plan to respond with kindness and grace to unsatisfied customers or negative feedback. Front desk attendants can provide some online community engagement for neighborhood salons, local stores and smaller home-based businesses. Larger brands and established businesses have turned to professionals or marketing interns in this critical realm, keeping a friendly face on business at all times.

Women are winning with customer demand for convenience

Offering the convenience to schedule outside normal business hours or bypass long phone-wait times increases customers who may otherwise walk away. The consulting firm, Accenture, found that 64% of patients will book healthcare services and appointments online or with self-scheduling apps by the end of 2019. This desire for control over medical care is something women in the beauty industry have paid attention to. The rise of booking sites and schedule apps free women up from receptionist and secretarial duties of old. Now beauty, style, cosmetic and wellness entrepreneurs have more time to engage customers, continue education in their fields and maximize business operations to profit thanks to technology.

Women have also capitalized on consumer temptation to impulse buy, using this to their advantage. For online social media influencers whose businesses depend on drumming up sales and interest, profile links and website recommendation pages keep updated catalogs to help followers buy their recommended products. This intuitive style of business guarantees they keep up with the tastes and preferences they promote.

Women show no signs of stopping their tenure at the forefront of beauty industry success. More celebrities, women seeking part-time income, and stay-at-home mothers continue to carve spaces for themselves in the beauty industry. They spread products and wellness, contribute to local and global economies, and develop or manufacture products with public demand for health in mind. The freedom, fulfillment and financial security of the beauty industry knows no limits for women determined to claim their places — its prime consumers converted to its business leaders.

Most optimistic is the fact beauty products, practices and cosmetics never leave the market. The shatterproof industry may ebb and flow according to economic health and consumer spending. However, women will continue to drive traditional business opportunities like Avon — the new millennium online success story and the increasingly social retail market where influencer suggestions matter. The time is now for more women to make beauty, style and self-care serious career pursuits.

About Jill Shields'

Jill Shields writes about the fashion and style industry for major publications around the world. Her articles have been featured in Bazaar, WWD and Forbes.

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