grow your salon, salon tips

8 Smart Salon Ideas for Small Spaces that you Need to Try

A salon interior

The appearance of your salon is a significant part of your customer experience. It starts to matter even before they enter your salon! Carefully chosen decor and type of salon can do everything from building your brand’s identity to creating a soothing atmosphere for your customers – so it’s important you work hard to get it right.

Regardless of the square footage of your salon interior, you can design its layout, color scheme, furnishings, and floor plan to give it an exclusive look that appeals to your customers.

Making the most of your space, getting the layout right, and creating the right look, all on time and within your budget can seem a ‘big ask’. But do not worry, we have got you covered with some amazing salon ideas for small spaces.

We have divided the ideas into two parts: design recommendations and salon types for limited spaces. Here’s what you’ll find in this blog:

Let us first discuss the various design recommendations you can implement in your salon.

1. Design Ideas

The interior design of your salon plays a pivotal role in customer experience. It does not matter whether you opt for a luxurious or economical design. Every effort towards elevating your salon decor should be directed towards making your customers feel relaxed and special.

So, let’s discuss a few small salon design ideas to make your interior more appealing and make your limited area look spacious:

a.) Design a simple but chic reception

Vintage table near a chair

The first impression is the last impression!

At first, what do your customers see? The reception area.

You want this area to feel warm and welcoming.

And therefore, salons that have enough space generally offer luxurious reception and waiting areas with comfortable chairs. But since the issue here is the space crunch, it is a good idea to choose a more compact reception desk that can fit a computer or tablet. You can keep this desk near your salon entrance. 

Along with it, you can provide a few good chairs along with some magazines. One thing that you should take care of here is that the furniture you choose should be compact and should match the vibe of your salon!

You can also completely eliminate the waiting area by not giving your customers a chance to wait. Adopt online salon scheduling for the same (if you haven’t already) and see the change yourself! 

b.) Provide a good workspace for stylists

Your customers spend the vast majority of their time in the chair. From cutting to styling, color, and make-up, this is where the magic happens! Each stylist should have a space that reflects the overall design of the salon while allowing for a few personal touches.

Here are some salon decor ideas to consider in your stylist spaces:

  • Stunning framed large mirrors that match your theme and help your salon look much bigger.
  • Innovative tool storage, such as overhead blow dryers
  • Pops of dimensions such as small plants, lighting, or other decorative accessories

Do not forget, your customers will also need a way to store their belongings during their service time. You can consider putting up a small table or shelf for them to keep their bags and other belongings.

c.) Create a royal experience at every point of service

Each and every detail is important. Even though you own a smaller space, your services should make your customers feel luxurious. Because that’s what actually matters!

You need to set the mood and create an indulgent experience at every stop, including washing stations and under the dryer.

For example, in the shampoo bowl area, you can provide a relaxing spa-like experience by keeping this area quiet and dim. You can also include accessories that match the vibe of your salon.

The bottom line here is to choose the lighting and decor for each station not just to look good but to provide the best experience to your customers at each step! Take care of their beauty and hair needs and don’t let them get bored while you work on it. 

d.) Make an Instagram worthy corner

LED signage on the wall

Once your customers are done with your top-notch services, you can provide a place for them to click selfies and encourage them to post their after-service pictures. Request them to tag your salon for some social media success as well!

You don’t need a large space for it, a small area in the corner of the salon will suffice. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. Most of us love taking photos where the backgrounds are fresh, bright, and funky. Having even just a small wall space with a pattern that pops makes it a wonderful space for taking photos that get major attention.
  2. You can use wall art as a way to express your brand, your colors, and to serve as a gorgeous background for Instagram photos.
  3. Adding plants around your salon makes the salon look fresher, younger, and more vibrant. Also, they are another way to add color to your decor so that it’s worth a photo!
  4. If your decor and overall vibe are youthful and bright, you can consider getting a neon sign for this corner. Neon signs come either pre-made with a cute phrase, or – my personal favorite – you can get it custom-made with one of your slogans, business name, catchphrase, or hashtag!
  5. You can strategically place a small sign in the area that reminds customers of your salon-branded hashtag. This will help your happy guest photos circulate on social media, boosting your brand recognition to bring in more customers.

On special occasions such as Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc. you can try and change the wall patterns/backgrounds to celebrate the occasion. This will give the regular customers a brand new photo booth and will also attract new customers.

2. Salon types

When it comes to a small salon, there’s not just one type! If you want to start a salon, here are some types of salons that can be your USP for attracting customers even with a low space:

a.) Studio Salon

Young female make-up artist with her client

A studio salon is a unique concept that allows you to run your own salon, without the hassle or expenses of starting a conventional salon business. You have the ability to personalize your space to fit your salon’s brand. 

The large and conventional salons sometimes tend to be noisy due to overcrowding, this problem can be sorted out by a studio salon. Here, you can provide a one-on-one experience for your customer without any problem.

It is a great option for a startup salon. You do not require a large number of chairs and you can easily run it in a small space.

You need to just plan your salon interior by deciding the necessary equipment and position of chairs, hair wash area, storage area, reception, floor plan, etc.

Just a little bit of planning and you’ll be good to go.

b.) Mobile Salon

A mobile salon is one of the most unique salon trends of the 21st century. With everything getting delivered at your doorstep without you having to travel, salons are reaching people wherever they are as well! In fact, it’s a great option to consider for the rather lazy youth. 🙈

You just need to buy a second-hand trailer/RV, furnish and decorate it in a creative manner. The best part of a trailer is that the passage is already divided into zones, so you do not need to worry about any sort of floor plan. 

You just need to plan the orientation and you can kick-start your very own mobile salon. 

c.) Home Salon 

Modern beauty salon interior with couch and arm-chair

If you wish to work from the comfort of your home and also cut down the expenses of a salon, a home salon is what you should consider!

By owning a home salon, you can save up a lot on rent, electricity, water, personal travel, etc.

The most important thing is to assess your space. When you know how much space you have, it is easier to choose the best salon equipment as per the area.

You will need a salon chair, a professional shampoo area (please do not keep it in your bathroom), a large mirror, a massage table, etc. according to your space and service menu.

You’ll also need a portable hair-dryer, a portable styling station, and a salon roller cart/trolley. Some equipment comes with wheels, so when the equipment is not in use you can just roll it out of the way and help maximize your moving space.

Just ensure that the salon space is well-differentiated from your personal areas. This will help your family have the privacy of their homes while you can work comfortably.

It is important to be professional, even though you’re working from the comfort of your home. Make sure your customers feel like they’re at a professional salon and not just in some random corner of your room.

d.) Basement Salon

A lot of people have no extra room in their homes per say, but have empty space in their basement that has not been used in a long time. You can redesign the whole space, give it a fresh and elegant look, and turn it into your very own basement salon!

It is a modern-day and cost-effective solution that helps you work from your home while ensuring that it is actually well separated from your family’s private space. 

Unlike a home salon, the lighting here may not be up to the mark. So you’ll need to fix it! A great portion of your decor budget should be allocated to improve the lighting. So, make sure you add enough lights at the right places to give your salon a more vibrant and aesthetic look.

Since basements have a higher roof height, you can try building storage spaces vertically in order to effectively utilize the given area. 

Also, ensure that there is proper ventilation in this type of salon and it looks and feels comfortable to your customers.


There are many salon decoration ideas that you can implement even when you’re on a budget. The ones we discussed in this blog suggest that simplicity is the key when it comes to designing a salon with a small carpet area. Simplicity and a minimalist approach work great in small spaces.

And remember that no area is too small for setting up your salon. From Apple to PayPal, the greatest organizations of the modern era began in the smallest rooms. 

So, what are you waiting for? Your time has finally arrived! Get ready to create your own small salon setup ideas from the above points and build your dream salon.

I hope the salon ideas for small spaces shared here give you new concepts and inspiration for making the most of your limited area. We wish you all the success with your salon business! 🙂

About Appointy

We at Appointy, help business owners grow and run their businesses with our online scheduling software. This blog was a part of our ‘Manage your Business’ category, where we provide expert tips, and resources, or simply talk about the challenges that small and medium businesses face every day. 

If you have any thoughts on this blog or would like to chat about your business struggles and achievements, let us know in the comments below. 

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