Playing Music In Your Hairdressers Or Beauty Salon

Beauty Salon

Playing background music in your hairdressers or beauty salon is all part of the experience for your customers, shaping your brand by acting as a powerful component to creating the perfect atmosphere in your salon. It can leave an unforgettable impression on your customers and affect their perception of your business, so the music you choose to play shouldn’t be a decision taken lightly.

Every salon is different. Whether you’re primarily a hair salon or barber shop, or whether you employ masseuses, nail technicians, stylists, make up artists or even tattoo artists, you’ll have some sort of brand image that drives your business and attracts customers. Sometimes you might not even think you do, but just consider for a moment how you would describe your beauty salon to a potential customer. What sort of imagery do you use on your promotional materials? How have you designed the interior and décor of your salon? All these aspects combine to create a solid beauty salon brand. Maybe you’re a traditional hole-in-the-wall salon, or maybe you’re an alternative hair salon as well as a piercing and tattoo parlour. The music you play in your salon reflects the image of your business. If you’re all about the multi-coloured mohawks that come with an in-store discount on tattoos, then playing Justin Bieber isn’t going to bring you much business.

Music Can Boost Your Beauty Salon Income

Make Up Artist

According to research conducted by MusicWorks, playing music in your hairdressers or salon can boost your business’ income. Approximately 80% of the 2000 research participants in the UK claimed that the music played in a salon is important to the atmosphere of an establishment. The Hairdressers Journal, in relation to the research, has stated that music can be just as important as interior design when it comes to creating your ideal salon atmosphere.

61% of hairdresser clients say they are more likely to return on a regular basis if they find the salon to be a welcoming and relaxing environment, and every hairdresser knows that a successful beauty salon relies on return visits to grow their business.

Sarah Cross, resident customer loyalty expert for The Hairdressers Journal, claims that:

“It is is 5x cheaper to retain clients than it is to acquire new ones…
20% of loyalty programme members will account for 80% of your profits.”

Whether it’s for your waiting rooms, reception areas or treatment rooms, the background music you play needs to suit the environment it’s played in. Music is a mood evoking trigger and different types of music affect customers in different ways. Studies have shown that playing music with a slow tempo can soothe customers and enhance the experience of being treated in a spa or a salon that provides relax services. (You can also use this technique to create anticipation for the treatment to come in waiting areas for your relaxation services such as massage and reflexology.)

Whilst more upbeat music complements more lively salons and can encourage friendly conversation between customers and the stylists or employees working at the salon. Similarly, you can create the same sort of social environment using music or television in your waiting rooms to entertain your customers. But don’t just think about keeping your customers happy while they’re in the salon. If your reception gets quite busy, you might want to also consider “on hold” music to keep people patient while waiting on the phone. On-hold music will remind customers and potential customers that there’s still someone on the other end. Dead silence, on the other hand, can be off-putting and make the wait seem longer for the caller, as if they’ve been left alone or ignored.

Music Solutions for Beauty Salons


There are many solutions to playing music in your beauty salon or parlour, and they may not all suit your particular business so think carefully how each one would work for your business.
(And no, you can’t legally use Spotify for your business.)


To have a TV on at your business, remember that you will need a TV licence in addition to your PPL and PRS licences. A TV, though not ideal for many types of salons, can be quite welcoming entertainment for more casual waiting rooms at “no-thrills” hairdressers or barber shops. They can provide entertainment for lone customers, or cheerful background noise for social customers who like to chat. Music channels are popular for many beauty establishments as they provide a lively atmosphere, accompanied by music video visuals for those in the waiting room.


Playing the radio in your salon is probably the most common form of background music in hairdressers and beauty salons. In more casual salons, the radio can work quite well as you can just switch it to a popular station and you’re all set! However, leaving song choice up to the radio station may not always suit your particular business and you may want to craft your own music brand so you don’t get any depressing music, for example, when you’re trying to create a positive environment.

CD Player

Getting old-school with the CD player! (Do people still own those?) Using a CD player allows you to switch out different music CDs depending on the time of day or mood of the salon. However, you will need to actively switch CDs when they’re finishing, or set the CD to repeat. Either way, it creates a less than smooth transition between albums or compilations and CDs also take up space and can get damaged.


Though regularly seen in bars and pubs, traditional and digital jukeboxes are less associated with hairdressers and beauty salons. But when placed in a waiting room, they can be a great way to make a little extra income by offering customers the opportunity to choose their own background music while they wait. Not forgetting how old traditional jukeboxes can help to establish that old-timey barber shop brand.

Background Music System

Using a dedicated background music system (BGM system) can be the most effective choice for music if you are really looking to tailor the music played to your business’ brand. The soundjack system is a touchscreen tablet that allows businesses to create music profiles and music playlists to suit their salon atmosphere, choosing from millions of tracks including every Official UK Top 40 Single since 1952. Salons could even choose to allow their customers to select their own songs from that huge collection using the soundjack app on their phone.

Licence For Playing Music In Hairdressers and Beauty Salons

Beauty Salon

The licence fee for playing music in your salon can seem like just another unnecessary expense, but consider how important music is to the success of your business. When was the last time you went to a salon where there was no background music?

Licence fees can vary in the amount you have to pay annually depending on the size of your business and how you play your music. If your hairdressing or beauty salon contains five chairs or less (not including any chairs in your waiting area – just the ones where customers sit as they are being treated) and you only play “traditional” radio or television broadcasts, then you could be eligible for a concessionary fee saving you 50% off of the lowest value licence fee per annum.

Traditional broadcasts mean:

  • BBC national and local radio stations
  • BBC1, BBC2, ITV1, Channel 4, S4C and Five television broadcasts (however delivered)
  • All Independent National Radio Stations and Independent Local Radio Stations (as licensed by Ofcom and listed as “Analogue: FM and AM” stations)

If your hairdressing salon contains more than five salon chairs, plays music “non-traditionally” (e.g. through a CD player or jukebox) or charges the public for admission to the premises, then you will not qualify for the concessionary fee and the annual fee will depend on the number of chairs and treatment tables you have.

Number of Chairs / Treatment Tables Fee (£)*
1 – 10 139.00
11 – 15 173.75
16 – 20 208.50

* Correct as of 4th November 2015 (time of publishing). Fees increase pro rata £34.75 per band of 5.

To apply for a PPL licence, click here to be taken to the application form where you will need to answer some questions about your business.

Contact us now for a FREE trial of the soundjack background music system!

Call 0207 644 8880

contact soundjack now for free demo Call 0207 644 8880

make enquiry