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How to Start a Cosmetic Business in Kenya

Vincent Nyoike
Vincent Nyoike Kenyan SMEs

The cosmetics business in Kenya is a profitable venture you can start. With the increased demand for beauty products, you can make huge profits. It is because of high demand for beauty products since many people want to use products that care for their skin, hair and health. Besides, people want to look good and smart, making the beauty shop business a profitable venture.

Read also: How I survived in the university selling beauty products

This is how to start cosmetics business in Kenya.

Tips on How to Start a Beauty Shop in Kenya 

Starting a cosmetic shop in Kenya requires you to have a few tips that will set your business apart from that of your competitors. This is what you need to do.

Create a Business Plan

The first step when starting any business is writing a business plan. A good cosmetic shop business plan for cosmetics business should have startup costs, location, strengths and weaknesses, risks, and ways to mitigate those risks. If you don't know how to write a business plan, you can hire a professional to write one on your behalf.

Read more: How to write a business plan

How Much Do I Need to Start a Cosmetic Shop in Kenya?

The cost of starting a cosmetic shop in Kenya ranges between Ksh 100,000 to 500,000. The price depends on the size and location of your business. The following are the requirements for starting a cosmetic business in Kenya and their respective prices.

  • Beauty products inventory  100,000
  • Furniture                               20,000
  • Rent and upfront rent          30,000
  • Electricity expenses               1,000
  • Salary for staff                      10,000
  • A computer and printer       25,000
  • Advertising                             5,000
  • Licenses and permits            20,000

Understand How Cosmetics Business Works

To succeed in any business, you need to know how it works and how you can win the competition. You can start by researching online and talking to people buying beauty products. Understand what potential customers want and the figure out how best you can deliver. Also, talk to those in those in the business, find out what they are selling and  at what price. Also, understand the market gap. Then find ways you can address the problems in the cosmetics industry.

You can succeed in the cosmetics business if you know the tricks and risks involved. It becomes easy to navigate your way and grow your business.

Select a Suitable Location

Its location determines the success of any business. It is best to get a stall where you can display beauty products and has a high influx of people. Get a storefront where there is high foot traffic. You can also start your business inside a mall, plaza, or in a kiosk. Look what works best for you and ensure that your option is within your budget.

Essentially, look for a visible place from the street, has a parking area, easy to access, and has high foot traffic.

Read also: How to start a bakery business in Kenya

Decide Products and Services to Offer

You need to figure out what services and products you will be selling. It depends on your business model, what your passion is and what you are good at. Find out what is not in the market that you can offer. It will make your makeup business unique and customers will be willing to try your products.

Among the fast moving beauty products in Kenya include mirrors, makeup products, furniture, decorations, chairs, eyeliners, manicure and pedicure products. Also, have various hair products like weaves and different hair brands, perfumes, skincare products and facial products. Besides, there are products for men like beard and mustache products.

Find Cheap Suppliers

Every business looks for ways to minimize operational costs and maximize on profits. As such, you need to place to source your stock. Look for cheap suppliers for your products. You can find cosmetic supplies in wholesale in Nairobi's downtown at lower prices. You will find many cheaper cosmetics wholesalers in Nairobi along Dubois Road, Munyu Road and River Road.

Hire The Right Team

You need to hire staff that is knowledgeable about beauty products. They need to know how to use most of the products, their downsides and upsides. It is because customers can ask questions related to products they have never used. Also, hire staff that believes in your business goals and have the best interest of your customers. With the right team, it is easy to grow your cosmetics business.

Read also: How to start fresh juice business in Kenya

Promote Your Business

You need customers to earn profits from your business. As such, you need to tell people that you are selling beauty products. There are many ways to promote a business; among them, use of flyers, posters and customer referrals. You can also provide passersby with coupons and samples. 

Also, you need to have a social media presence. It is probably the cheapest way to promote your business and reach more people. Tell people about beauty products you are selling why they should buy them.

What to Stock in a Cosmetic Shop 

The following are items to sell in a cosmetic shop in Kenya.

  • Hair food
  • Gel 
  • Wig
  • Earrings
  • Lip stick 
  • Body lotions 
  • Eye pencils 
  • Necklaces  
  • Conditioner 
  • Braids 
  • Shampoos 
  • Weaves 

Is Cosmetic Business Profitable in Kenya? 

Yes. The profits you can generate from your beauty business depends on the size of your business and its location. If you are aggressive enough, you can make between Ksh 3000 and 5000 in a day. On average, the profit margin is usually 40%. It implies that in a month, you can earn up to Ksh 50,000.

Read also: How to start a maize milling business

Final Word

Starting a beauty shop in Kenya is easy. The success of any business depends on the number of customers and advertising. If you can get a good place, it will give you value for your money. Also, focus on customer satisfaction and continually improve your services. With that, I hope you can now easily start a beauty shop business in Kenya.