How to start a salon in Dubai, UAE


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Dubai is the perfect place to launch a salon business. The emirate is home to millions of fashionable and image-conscious residents. So much so that the UAE cosmetics market is one of the largest in the region – with Dubai leading the way.

In total, the market, consisting of haircare, skincare, and more, is predicted to be worth an incredible USD 3bn by 2025. And with a growing and affluent Millennial and Gen Z population, there’s good reason to expect this trajectory to continue for many years to come.

And there’s more good news. Whether you want to start a men’s salon or start a women’s salon, setting up is easy when you work with a local expert. Here’s everything you need to know to get started.

What are the benefits of starting a salon business in Dubai?

Aside from a large and growing customer base, there are plenty of great reasons to start a salon business in Dubai. For one, as a business owner out here, you can benefit from an incredibly low tax environment. The corporate and personal tax rates still stand at 0%, with VAT low and flat at 5%.

Dubai is also a place famed for its ease of doing business. Work with a UAE company setup agent and you can be licensed to run a salon within weeks.

Is a salon business profitable in Dubai?

It certainly can be. Dubai’s residents expect quality and are happy to pay for it. If you can provide those services, then there is no reason why you should not quickly turn a profit.

Of course, many factors can impact profitability. So be sure to do your research into prime locations, product suppliers, and local market need before you commit to a salon premises. For example, it may be best to start a ladies’ salon in one area, whereas another may be more suited to starting a men’s salon.

How to start a salon business in Dubai, UAE

The critical stage of opening a salon business is obtaining your trade license. However, before we get to that step, there are few administrative tasks to get out of the way.

If you haven’t already, now is the time to approach a local agent such as Set Hub. We can manage every step of the company formation process, from trade name registration to visas.

First, we will help you decide on your company name. Be aware that you must abide by a strict set of naming conventions. You should avoid any offensive or blasphemous language. Avoid names of well-known organisations and avoid abbreviations if naming your company after yourself – i.e., Dave Mann Consulting, rather than D Mann Consulting.

Next, it’s time to confirm your business activities. Here, you’ll need to outline all services that you intend to offer. You can only carry out activities that are listed on your license.

So, if you intend to start a men’s salon, start a women’s salon, or start a hair and skin treatment salon, you’ll have to make that clear. Failure to declare any activities could lead to problems further in the process.

How to get a license for a beauty salon in Dubai

With the admin complete, you can now apply for your salon license. There are a couple of ways of doing this, depending on your requirements. You can opt to open in a free zone. By doing so, you’ll benefit from customs tax exemption, zero currency restrictions, and the ability to repatriate capital and profits.

However, you can only trade from your free zone, meaning footfall will likely be limited compared to a high street location.

If you wish to set up here, you should make your license application to your chosen free zone.

The other option is the mainland. When you set up here, you are free to work from anywhere in the UAE. However, you will not receive the free zone benefits listed above.

In this instance, you would need to make your license application to the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED). You will also need to apply for additional approvals from the Planning, and Health and Safety divisions of the DED.

In either case, there are two main options: men’s salon license and women’s salon license. Each permit you to carry out the following:

Women’s salon license: Hair washing, trimming, setting, colouring, straightening, removal, and waxing. Henna services. Makeup, skin cleansing, foot care, manicures, and other body and face treatments.

Men’s salon license: Hair trimming, waving, dyeing, straightening, removal, and strengthening. Skin purification, foot care, and facial treatments.

Whether you decide to set up in the mainland or in a free zone, Set Hub can help. Simply supply us with the following details, and we’ll do the rest, liaising with all authorities on your behalf.

  • A completed application form.
  • Articles of incorporation (if necessary).
  • Passport copies for all shareholders.
  • Brief descriptions of intended business activities.


We can also assist with your visa applications. This includes your residency visa, visas for company employees and visas for domestic staff such as housekeepers or drivers.

The maximum number of visas you can apply for will depend on the size of your business premises, and for dependant visas, your personal earnings.

What is the cost of starting a salon business in Dubai?

The total cost of starting your business will depend on many factors. The size and location of your premises, the number of staff you employ, whether you opt for free zone or mainland, can all play a part.

Then there is the cost of the salon license. For this, you can expect to pay in the region of AED 10,000 to AED 12,000 in most cases.

Start your salon business with Set Hub

If you’re armed with the right knowledge, starting a salon business in Dubai doesn’t have to be overly complicated.

That being said, it does require a level of prior knowledge of the process. What’s more, it is important to note that the application process is only straightforward if your license application is complete at the time of submission and free from errors.

To help you to ensure that this is the case, it’s a good idea to work with a company formation specialist such as Set Hub when establishing a new company in the UAE.

We are a team of company registration professionals who are passionate about bringing the dreams of aspiring entrepreneurs and SMEs to life.

As well as handling your license application, Set Hub can also assist with the opening of corporate bank accounts and advise on the most appropriate financial institution to suit your specific needs.

We also offer visa and immigration services and can handle all government formalities, permissions, work permits, and visas applications required to trade in the UAE.

In short, our experts can establish your company on your behalf, make your license and visa applications, and take care of all the necessary admin – leaving you free to get on with running your business.