Just Graduated! Should You Work for a Spa or Start Your Own?

Just Graduated! Should You Work for a Spa or Start Your Own?

Posted by Diana K. on Jul 19th 2022


If you're about to or you've just graduated from Esthetician's School, congratulations! You've come such a long way, and now the real work begins!

You may be wondering if you should work for someone else or if you should start your own spa. And that's a great question! Here we will help you work through some pros and cons of each and hopefully we can help you decide which is best for YOU.


Advantages of working for a spa:

1) The spa is the other person’s responsibility - marketing and advertising, accounting, setup, management, everything - it's all their responsibility for good or for bad.

2) It's a great "training ground" for you - you can learn more from a seasoned pro in a week than you could learn on your own in a year or more.

3) You work your hours and go home - you don't have to worry about the clients or the business after you leave for the day.

4) You are 'guaranteed' a certain amount of pay for your work, regardless of the spa's actual income, based on the spa's salary structure.

5) If you gain a really good reputation for your services, you could earn more money or even leave that spa (if there are good reasons for you to do that) and work for a spa that pays more.

Disadvantages of working for someone else:

1) It can be difficult to enter the local job market, depending on the supply and demand for local estheticians, and how many spas are hiring. Plus, you have to earn your way in with your resume and hopefully your interview. Put your best foot forward and submit a great resume.

2) You're subject to the policies, services, and products of that spa - the control is under the owner, not you.

3) There may be personality or other issues with the owner or other estheticians. This is one of those situations of when it's good, it's really good and when it's bad, it can be really bad. You need patience and the ability to give up control over where you don't have it.

4) The pay is static - you will only earn what you earn based on the spa's salary structure. The owner makes the real profit for better or worse.

Advantages of your own spa:

1) Everything is under your control (within limits of course) - you set the services, the prices, the products, the hours, the location (within availability), etc.

2) You only answer to your clients and to no other boss or manager.

3) You have the pride and privilege of knowing that at the end of the day, what you did was yours and only yours. Your clients are literally your clients.

4) Nearly unlimited income potential - the income is all yours (after paying the bills!).

Disadvantages of your own spa:

1) It takes money to open up a spa. A lot of money.

2) You are responsible for everything that happens, good and bad. You are the sole responsible person for what you sell, who you sell to, and how you advertise, etc.

3) You have to do everything - you are the manager, marketer and advertiser, prepper, esthetician, janitor, customer service representative, etc etc. When (not if) something goes wrong, you have to fix it. That lost client had paid part of the rent - and that income needs to be replaced.

4) The spa is your responsibility 24/7. When something goes wrong, you get to fix it. There’s no fallback person, no one to help. It’s…. all…. you.

5) If the business fails to pay its bills, the business will fail because it can't afford to stay open. That sole responsibility is yours. And your business can and will affect your personal financial stability so you need to prepare and react.


If you’re considering going solo in your own spa at some point, you can see there are some great advantages. However, those advantages will only be helpful if you have enough experience to actually go at it alone.

Any serious mistake, especially when first starting out in your business, could mean a premature failure of your business and financial disaster for you and your family.

Being smart and avoiding rash decisions when it comes to your career will help you enjoy a long and successful one. Let us know if you have any questions at all about this topic! Email us at  

This is part of an article series dedicated to helping new and newer estheticians become more successful by providing valuable insights into the real world of esthetics . Our next article (scheduled for next week) will be how to get hired at a local spa, so keep an eye out for it!


Diana is the CEO and Founder of Honeycomb Wax Company. She formulated our depilatory wax and skin care line.