Show Me The Money

Show Me The Money

Show Me The Money

men-ü director Graham Fish gives us some insights into the male grooming industry in the first article in his 'Show me the Money' series.

The most common quote I get in the industry is “I love my job interacting with people, helping them look their best and adding to their confidence.” However, I also hear in men’s grooming “I wish I could earn more money!” Put simply - the client is not paying enough. Perhaps the quality/value is not always there or highlighted. Business eventually comes down to a set of numbers.

A book I highly recommend, especially for a service business, is Michael Gerber’s The E Myth Revisited. He writes about the ‘fatal assumption’ - just because you are brilliant at what you do doesn’t mean you’re automatically brilliant at running a business. I think that between all of us - on the technical and business sides - we can do so much better in terms of men’s grooming.

Market information is important in business planning. Is the market growing significantly or not? The rapid expansion in the number of salons and barbers (almost the fastest expansion outside of vaping) is not an indication in itself of market growth.
Maybe the market is not easy and not growing significantly.

The latest data I have seen suggests this:

•    Euromonitor: (who provide market research reports) show a 1% increase in volume in 2015, with razors and blades declining by 5%. Market +3% minus razors and blades.
    •    Global men’s per capita spend on grooming is only 11% to that of women.
No one has all the answers, so it would be great to hear from readers with credible market data that shows the men’s grooming market currently growing significantly. Consumer research was conducted exclusively for the men-u? brand amongst 2,040 men and 2,005 women in April.


The men’s grooming market has massive potential and the key word appears to be EDUCATION. Of the men questioned:

  • 51% with long, medium and short hair are open to try a different style recommended by their hairdresser.

    •    57% thought men could do with more personal grooming education and of these men – 88% thought shaving education and 84% skincare.
    •    Nearly 2/3 (65%) are not informed by their barber/stylist about the services they receive and products used.
    •     Only 15% are informed about the services they receive, only 12%the products used and only 8% services and products.

I have included the last two points because how much better would it be, if we fulfil what men are asking for? Education and styling in order to optimise their look and confidence.

If so many male clients are open to re-styling and it is seen that they can benefit from it, why not ask “Have you considered having your hair styled/cut this way?”

    •    38% of men pay less than £10 for a haircut and only 1% pay more than £25. 72% of men are paying the same or less than two years ago (11% less and 62% the same).
    •    Only 17% of men have regular appointments with their hairdresser/barber.

I have never come across men waiting for a haircut who say they enjoy the experience. It is interesting that the question in the latest ‘We Buy Any Car’ commercial asks how one values ones time.

Most realise these points and successful salons and barbers are making men aware of the quality of service and value they receive and are charging for it.

Professional outlets and online are the only trade sectors that can offer up the degree of information that men require but only salons and barbers can do this in person. So, why such a small percentage of men’s grooming service and product sales in salons and barbers? Give men the right advice and what they are asking for and the potential has to be MASSIVE.


    •    Are they going to introduce more men to quality grooming?
    •    Are we going to make money?

It would be great to get feedback from others in terms of what is working for them and not, in order to share with readers, as we all have the same objective. men-u? is offering four of these packs worth over £50 for what we consider the best feedback and replies to this article. Email,

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