A trip to the spa is the outcome of needing some much-needed relaxation time, so we understand that when your service is complete you are in a state of post-bliss euphoria from your hot stone massage that is until you are jolted back to reality when the front desk hands you an envelope for gratuity. Tipping for beauty treatments can cause even the savviest of beauty junkies to stress because protocols differ from spa to spa. Do you tip the owner of a salon? Is there an industry standard for manicures, what about combination service deals? The list goes on and one, so we’ve put together a cheat sheet for you to answer your most pressing tipping conundrums.

Is there an industry standard tipping percentage?

Whether it is a manicure, massage or mud wrap, the industry standard is 20%. If it is your first trip to a new salon/spa, make sure to research on whether they only accept cash tips and or if they include gratuity in the service price.

Do I tip everyone at the salon? 

This particular question is tailored to hair stylists, junior stylists, assistants and stylist assistants. The rule of thumb is to tip each person who works on your mane from the pre-shampoo to the final blow-dry. At the end of your service, you can ask for several envelopes and portion out the tips according to level.

What about a complimentary bang trim?

If your salon offers a free bang trim, it is still accustomed to tip. Depending on your relationship with your stylists and your salon’s price point, tipping can vary. If you are unsure, stick with the industry standard of 20%.

Should I tip more during the holiday season?

Similar to other service industries, if you have a longstanding relationship with your esthetician, stylist or nail technician, feel free to increase your gratuity to 25-30% during the holiday months.

What is my service is a gift, or I’m using a voucher?

Unless specifically stated, a gifted service does not typically include tip. In regards to vouchers or coupon codes, it is imperative that you tip on the original cost of the service, not the discounted price as this would be unfair to the service provider.

What if I had a bad service?

We understand when a service goes bad, your generosity to leave a tip decreases, so we recommend first sharing your experience with the manager or owner, so they can adjust their practices to accommodate you and future clients better. Additionally, tipping 10% is still recommended.

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