Eight Common Issues Spas Face for Increasing Male Clientele

Experts believe aesthetic professionals should educate men about spas and professional products. // Photography: Getty Images

While research shows that more men are visiting spas today, there are still some obstacles that get in the way of even more men frequenting these facilities. Here are a few of the biggest issues preventing men from visiting spas: 

Issue: Spas mostly target women.

Solution: “Start by offering men-only promotions one day every three months,” says Manon Pilon, director of research and development at Derme&Co. “This is a great way to start building your male clientele. You can call your clients and promote this day, and eventually, through promotion and word of mouth, your spa will be known by more men. It is important to be inclusive of men in your marketing efforts including social media, service menus, and blogs.”

Issue: Price is out of reach.

Solution: “Once they are convinced that their money spent will give them some value for the service or product they purchase, the expense becomes less of an obstacle,” says CV Skinlabs’s Pamela Friedman. “If guys feel that it will reduce stress or make them feel better, or reduce redness in their complexion, for example, they will pay for it. If they see results and feel good afterwards, they’ll be back.”

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Issue: There is not enough exposure to spas in places men frequent.

Solution: “Market the spa and your new menu at golf courses, breweries, or sports clubs, or have fun hosting your own whiskey-tasting party at the spa,” says Melissa Morris, director of east coast education at Pevonia. “Ask all of your female clients to refer a male friend for a free gift, or host a husband-and-wife date night at the spa, where they can perform mini treatments on each other to enhance bonding.”

Issue: Products are geared toward women.

Solution: “The gender-neutral product trend has widely opened the door for men to feel more comfortable in trying and using skincare products,” says Morris. “As product manufacturers use packaging, aromas, and labeling that are more gender neutral, men have become more open than ever to try their spouses’ or friends’ products or to visit the spa with them.”

Issue: Spa times are inconvenient for men.

Solution: “Men prefer early in the morning before work or later at night after work,” says Pilon. “This is why opening at 7 a.m. would be a great opportunity to attract a male clientele.”

Issue: There is a lack of education about spas and professional products.

Solution: “The best thing esthetic professionals can do is educate men,” says Shannon Esau, CEO and national educator at Rhonda Allison Cosmeceuticals. “Talk to them about the ingredients commonly found in over-the-counter formulas that could be doing more harm than good. Demystify the notion that skincare has to take a lot of time by showing them what an easy starter regimen might look like. You can do this while they’re in the treatment room, through your blog, or by partnering with other area businesses like gyms or nutrition shops to deliver educational content.”

Issue: Men have a lack of time to devote at the spa.

Solution: “Men want simplicity,” says Esau. “Express services are a great way to get first-time spa-goers in the door. In 30 minutes, you can deliver an effective treatment that will allow them to experience the rejuvenating, relaxing, and skin benefits. Following the treatment, send them home with an easy three-step system composed of multitasking products so they begin to realize that skincare doesn’t have to be a major investment of their time.”

Issue: Marketing materials target women.

Solution: “Like the services your spa offers men, your marketing materials must be similarly straightforward and bold,” says Esau. “Spas should promote the idea that everything about the treatments and products are geared specifically for men’s skincare needs—from ingredients to ease of use to the serious results.”


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