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Sorry about posting this question again, but I can't seem to find the old thread on this topic...

I'm going to a home spa for waxing in a few days. The person providing the service is the person who owns the business. Am I suppose to tip her?
Feb 18, 2009 @ 11:57 pm

7 Replies


re: tipping

hrmm.. I think it's good etiquette to tip at a spa, restaurant, etc. but you don't have to. Tipping often depends on the individual.

I usually tip what the amount of tax turns out to be (13% of the bill). If the service is really good, I tip a bit more, but if the service is horrible, I will not tip at all.
Feb 19, 2009 @ 03:26 pm

Home Spa

I guess my question was more specific to home spas, meaning the esthetician is running her own business at her home. She's the service provider and she is the boss. In this case, should I still tip her?

I read the old thread on tipping, I guess you don't need to tip the esthetician/owner...
Feb 19, 2009 @ 07:32 pm


As I was curious myself as to tipping etiquette when it comes to service outside of the food industry, I asked my hair dresser what an "appropriate" tip was for anyone in the beauty industry. I'm exceedingly nervous about insulting those whose businesses I frequent, as I depend upon them every month for my routine upkeep. Strolling out of a salon with purple hair and a hack job is a fear right up there with heights, spiders, and being an 80 year old spinster.
According to him, in the US, an acceptable tip of 15% is, across the board, just that-- acceptable. 18% is more appropriate, unless the service is lacking. As a former server, I can appreciate the frustration many in similar industries experience when a client, guest or customer tips inadequately. Many don't realize that industries such as beauty, food service, and other assorted "sales" jobs all work on commissions or about half of the minimum working wage. This means that not only is tipping an expression of gratitude, but also as a way for your provider of sorts to establish for themselves a living. Outside of the US, customs and wages are different, but unless tipping is perceived as an insult, which is the case especially in Japan, where leaving additional money implies that you need to ensure their superior service by "bribing" them with extra money, tipping is a requirement in all but the legal sense. So sure, we need to "bribe" here in America to ensure great service, but that's because many of us are lazy and not nearly as industrious as our japanese counterparts.
Save yourself a bad cut, cold food, and sneering servicemen and -women, and tip appropriately. :)
Mar 04, 2009 @ 11:32 am
Ali de Bold

Home spa

That's a tough one. I would probably still tip if the service was good. Better when in doubt to tip, than not and feel badly next time you come in. I would much rather everyone raise their prices and have the tip included than the awkwardness that comes with the bill.
Mar 04, 2009 @ 01:46 pm

I would

My hair dresser and esthetician both own their own home business. I do tip my hair dresser but I only see her 3-4 times a year. I don't tip my esthetician anymore. I did the first few times I saw her but now I see her on a regular basis, practically every month for different services. I stopped after maybe the 4th time? I was regular enough that she remembered me and was giving me a little bit of a discount on things because I was coming so frequently. She explicitly told me not to worry about it.

I'd suggest that since this is your first time, tip just in case. It's better to tip than to not tip especially if she does a good job. If you don't tip and go back she might remember that and do a bad job on you and if she was insulted.
Mar 04, 2009 @ 07:55 pm

based on your suggestions...

I did tip at the visit to the home spa b/c the service was relatively cheap compared to other places and I figured why not.

But I am wondering about this: I thought the purpose of tipping for services is to give the person a little bit more money. Money they've earned by doing a good job. Money that's solely for them, in addition to the (probably crappy) salary the business owner is giving them. Tipping is necessary because the person giving the service is only getting back a small fraction of what you've paid. So if the person owns the business and is already keeping all the money the service has generated, then why is tipping necessary?
Mar 05, 2009 @ 12:12 am


In the case of an owner, and specifically for those based out of someone's home, I suppose tipping is a courtesy and no more. I figure probably, now that I think of it, and as tigerlily points out, the frequency of service should be taken into account. Being a once-in-a-while client, tipping should occur-- perhaps, when you are a 'regular', your level of comfort with your provider will allow you to ask that sticky question of "should I be tipping you?". As I use the services of an owner of a small salon (only one other employee), I tip him as my hairdresser, not as the owner-- if that makes sense. Just remember, employees talk. Whatever the industry, they can spot pennypinchers a mile away-- and will give preference to more...shall we say, generous, clients.
Mar 05, 2009 @ 09:10 am

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