How to Start and run a Cosmetics Business in Kenya


The cosmetics business industry in Kenya is a profitable venture you can start and operate. With the expanded demand for beauty products, you can make massive profits. It is because of the high demand for beauty products since many people want to buy products that care for their smooth skin, hair and health. Similarly, people want to look good and smart in public, making the beauty shop business a very profitable venture. Here is how you can start a cosmetics business in Kenya.

Tips on How to Start and run a Beauty Shop in Kenya 

Opening a cosmetic shop in Kenya needs you to have a few tips that will set your cosmetics business separated from that of your competitors. For instance, you have to know what to stock in a cosmetic store in Kenya. This is what you need:

Write a Cosmetics Business Plan

The very first step when starting any business is writing a good business plan. A good cosmetic shop business plan for the cosmetics industry should have: 

  • Full Startup costs
  • List of cosmetic items for the shop
  • Business location
  • Strengths and weaknesses
  • Risks and methods to mitigate those business risks.

If you don’t know how to write a good business plan, you can hire a professional to write one on your behalf on freelancing websites.

Understand How Cosmetics Business Works

To succeed in any business in Kenya, you need to know how it works and also how you can win the competition. You can begin by researching online and talking to people purchasing beauty products. Understand what potential clients want and then figure out how best you can deliver.

Likewise, talk to those in those in the business, and find out what they are selling best and at what price. Also, you need to understand other things like how to arrange a cosmetic shop to look neat and presentable and also understand the market gap. Then discover ways you can address the problems in the cosmetics enterprise. You can thrive in the cosmetics business if you know the tricks and business risks involved. It becomes easy to move your way and expand your business.

Find a Suitable Cosmetics Business Location

Its location defines the success of any business. It is best to get a small stall where you can display beauty products neatly and has a high influx of people. Get a storefront where there is increased foot traffic. You can also create your business inside a mall, plaza, or in a kiosk. Look at what works best for you and also ensure that your option is within your budget.

Basically, look for a visible place from the street that has a good parking area, easy to access, and also has high on foot traffic.

Decide on the Cosmetics Products to Sell

You will need to figure out what to stock first in a cosmetic shop in Kenya. It relies on your business model, what your real passion is and what you are good at. Find out what is not in the current market that you can offer. It will make your makeup business special, and customers will be willing to try your items.

Among the fast-moving beauty items in Kenya include decorations, chairs, mirrors, makeup products, furniture, eyeliners, manicure and pedicure products. Also, have different hair products like weaves and different skincare products, hair brands, perfumes and facial products. Besides, there are beauty products for men like beard and moustache products.

What to Stock in a Cosmetic Shop 

The following are products to sell in a cosmetic shop in Kenya.

  • Make up products. You can store products like eye primer, nail polish, concealer, eye shadow, mascara, eyeliner, lipstick, eyebrows, lip gloss and brushes.
  • Hair care products. There is a vast variety of hair products you can stock like weaves, hair extensions, spray gel, braids, shampoo, conditioners, hair cream, hair relaxers and hair sprays.
  • Skin care products. You furthermore need to stock skin care products like body lotion, body toning, moisturizer, age defying and exfoliation. 
  • Toiletry. You can also stock toiletry products like toilet soap, bar soap, soap, toilet paper, deodorant, and toothpaste and body perfume.

Find Cheap Cosmetics Suppliers

Every business looks for methods to minimize operational costs and maximize on its profits. As such, you want to place to source your stock. Look for affordable suppliers for your products.

Where to Buy Cosmetics in Wholesale Nairobi 

You can find cheap cosmetic supplies in wholesale in Nairobi’s downtown area at lower prices. You will discover many cheaper cosmetics wholesalers in Nairobi along the Dubois Road, Munyu Road and River Road.

Hire The Right Team

You need to employ staff that is knowledgeable about beauty products. They have to know how to use most of the products, their products’ downsides and upsides. It is because customers can ask many questions related to products they have never used. Likewise, hire staff that believes in your business’ goals and have the most suitable interest of your customers. With the right team on board, it is easy to grow your cosmetics business.

You need clients to make a profit from your cosmetics store. As such, you need to tell many people that you are selling beauty products. There are numerous marketing strategies you can adopt at first. Among them use of flyers, promoted ads, posters and customer referrals. You can likewise provide passersby with coupons and give samples. 

Similarly, you need to have a social media presence online. It is probably the cheapest method to promote your business and reach more people. Tell people about the beauty products you are selling and why they should purchase them.

How Much Do you Need to Start a Cosmetic Shop in Kenya? 

The cost of starting and running a cosmetic shop in Kenya normally ranges between Ksh 100,000 to 500,000. The cost depends on the size and location of your business. The following are the minimum requirements for starting a cosmetic business in Kenya and also their respective prices.

  • Beauty products stock – Ksh 100,000
  • Furniture – Ksh 20,000
  • Rent and deposit rent – Ksh 30,000
  • Electricity expenses – Ksh 1,000
  • Salary for new staff – Ksh 10,000
  • A computer and small printer – Ksh 25,000
  • Advertising costs – Ksh 5,000
  • Licenses and permits – Ksh 20,000

Is Cosmetic Business Profitable in Kenya? 

Yes. The profits you can yield from your beauty business depend on the extent of your business and its primary location. If you are pretty aggressive enough, you can make money between Ksh 3000 and Ksh5000 in a day. On average, the profit margin is normally 40%. It implies that in a good month, you can earn profits of up to Ksh 50,000.

Conclusion of How to Start a Cosmetics Business in Kenya

Starting a beauty parlour in Kenya is easy. The success of any business in Kenya depends on the number of clients and advertising efforts. If you can get a good place, it will give you good value for your money. Also, focus on customer satisfaction first and continually improve your services gradually. With that, I hope you can now smoothly start a beauty shop business in Kenya.