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Hairstylist Math - Do you know how to calculate color costs?

So after years of coloring wigs and hairpieces I have finally made an excel spreadsheet to easily calculate how much clients should be paying for their color on top of the service. I honestly can't believe it has taken me this long to do this.


So far as a value added service I have included 1 color service with the purchase of a new human hair wig. BUT I wasn't keeping track of the cost of the color on these services. And honestly it has come back to bite me.


A good friend of mine uses the VISH system (something I plan to have in the future) that calculates the cost and adds it to each client's invoice on top of the service. I think this is a great thing for clients to see. ESPECIALLY, since the costs have gone up dramatically for product in the last 5 years.


Wigs especially use way more color than regular hair. They just soak it right up. I easily use double to triple the amount of color on a wig than a person with the same amount of hair. It also takes a lot longer to apply.


From now on I will be making sure the client invoice shows the value of the complimentary color costs plus service cost. This should help when they come back and need a refresh.


If you need some help I calculated it like this

*note - I work in grams*


Cost of color per tube = $15.00

4oz per tube = 114 grams

$15.00 divided by 114 grams = $0.13/gram MY COST

$0.13 x 2 = $0.26/gram CLIENT COST


Developer = $15.00

33oz = 935g

$15.00 divided by 935g = $0.03/gram MY COST

$0.03 x 2 = 0.06/gram CLIENT COST


I have yet to work out the cost for bleach. That is next.


I put the formulas in an excel spreadsheet so I can plug in the grams for the color and developer and it will do the math for me. BOOM! No more lost revenue because I wasn't taking into account how much color I used on a wig. No more undervaluing my services because I felt bad that it was such a high number.


The wig that I rooted and toned this evening used $57.72 of color. That is just the color cost. That doesn't count the hours it took to prewash (new wig) and dry, apply, process, wash, mask, blowdry, and style. Some wigs I customize take 8+ hours of work over multiple days to get just right.


Know your worth and charge accordingly.

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