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New answer on Jan 15, 2020
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asked on Aug 01, 2018
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Market sizing quiz how many hairdressers are there in the US

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updated an answer on Aug 03, 2018

The number of hairdressers depends on three main factors: # of haircuts done per year, time spent per haircut and capacity of each hairdresser.

Number of haircuts: Number of haircuts depends on US population that gets a haircut and how often people get a haircut. I will first tackle the population. Obviously, people aged between 0-10 do not get haircuts. Even if they do, it is exceedingly rare. I assume health expectancy is 80 years and population is evenly distributed among each groups. That means, only 87.5% of the US population gets haircuts. I assume there are 160m males and 160m females in the US. That means, 140m males and 140m females gets haircut each year. I also assume males get a haircut once every month and females get once every three months, which means 12 haircuts per year for males and 4 haircuts per year for females.

This means, total number of haircuts per year is 140m * 12 = 1.68 billion for males and 140m * 4 = 560 million for females.

Time per haircut: I will assume a haircut per male will take 30 minutes while it will take 1 hr for females.

Capacity per hairdresser: I will assume there will be on average four hairdressers per shop and each will work for 40 hours per week. Assuming they will work for 50 weeks per year, capacity of each shop is 8000 worker hour.

Obviously, the number of hairdressers is total hours worked / capacity per hairdresser.

Total hours worked: 1.68 billion * 30 minutes (for males) + 560 million * 1 hr (for females) = 0.84 billion worker hours (for males) + 0.56 billion worker hours (for females) = 1.4 billion worker hours

Capacity per hairdresser: I calculated it above to be 8000 worker hours per year.

Number of hairdressers: 1.4 billion worker hours per year / 8000 worker hours per year = 175,000.

There are approximately 175,000 hairdresser shops, or 700,000 individual hairdressers working in the US.


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Ada on Oct 19, 2018

Obviously, people aged between 0-10 do not get haircuts. Even if they do, it is exceedingly rare.

Laura replied on Aug 02, 2018


According to my issue tree and taking into account the following assumptions, there are 100.000 hairdresser salons in USA.


1. USA population: 320M people

2. Life expectancy: 80 years

3. Same number of people per age group (320M / 80 = 4M)

4. Children between 0 and 5 years old don't use hairdresser salons.Market Sizing Case Study

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Wallie replied on Aug 05, 2018
Actively preparing for MBB interviews, looking for solid case partners for frequent practice! Always doing my best as interviewer

Hi Preplounge and fellow users,

Congratulations on hitting the 2,000 questions milestones on the Consulting Q&A segment! This segment has been tremendously helpful to me in nagivating the subtleties of casing and interview tips (among other information on mangament consulting), and I'm sure the vast majority of users here would agree with me.

Here's my attempt at this question, comments and feedback greatly welcomed!

WallieMarket Sizing Case Study Examples

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Robin replied on Aug 02, 2018

Assumptions in my tree below:

- 25% of US population frequent the hair salon once every 3 months

- 50% of US population frequent the hair salon once every 6 months

- Other 25% do not go to the hair salon frequently enough to impact their day to day

- All hair treatments take the same amount of time, i.e., an hour

- Roughly even distribution of hair salon sizes, so taking the average of small salon capacities and large salon capacities should yield an accurate median/mean size

Therefore, there are approximately 68,000 hairdresser salons in the US.

Market Sizing Case Practice

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Tania updated an answer on Aug 01, 2018

market sizing answer how many hairdresser salons in the US


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Astrid on Aug 08, 2018

Hi Tania! Congratulations, you have won! Please check your inbox for your coupon code :) Best, Astrid

Kalys updated an answer on Aug 06, 2018
Looking for partners to prepare for case interview

While I agree with the previous answers, I would like to suggest another approach - empirical way.

Population of my village = 10K

Number of hairdresser salons in this village = 5

Therefore, 1 hairdresser per 2K population

For the population of 320mln we need 160K hairdresser salons (320mln / 2K)


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Carolina replied on Aug 01, 2018

I am going to simplify few numbers, but this is the approach I am going for:

There are roughly 300 millions people in the US. I am going to divide the population in an average of 4 people's family, therefore 75 millions.

Each family has two male members and two female members. The male members cut their hair once a month, taking 30 minutes each. The female members cut their hair once every two months, taking 1 hour each. Therefore each family spends 4 hours every two months for haircutting, 2 hours every month.

Every hair salon has on average 6 hairdressers, working 10 hours a day, 30 days a month. This equals to 1800 hours per month. Dividing it by 2 hours, every hair salon serves 900 families.

By dividing 75 millions family by 900, we get 83.333 hair salons

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joe on Aug 02, 2018

but then you are assuming that every saloon is operating 100% of the time which is incorrect. We do have some idle team in between

Frank updated an answer on Aug 06, 2018

Sorry that some got cut-off. Overall, my estimates leads to roughly around 80,000 hairdresser salons in the United States. market sizing case study solutionhow to solve market sizing case


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Negin replied on Aug 01, 2018

I say about 90.000 salons

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replied on Aug 08, 2018
PrepLounge Head of Product & Marketing

Hi everyone!

We are really impressed by the quality of your answer! Top notch!

Now it's time to draw the winner....

Congratulations, Tania! You won!

You will soon receive a message including your 6-week Premium Membership coupon!

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[There were so many great answers that we chose to draw the winner by chance. To make it fair to the people who put a lot of effort into their solutions, we only included the answers with a solution path. Then we assigned a number to each answer and drew the winner with an automatic number generator: 1 Laura; 2 Serdar; 3 Wallie; 4 Robin; 5 Tania; 6 Carolina, 7 Kalys, 8 Frank.]

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Adrian replied on Aug 08, 2018

I would say 100,000 hairdressers.

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Utkarsh replied on Oct 26, 2018

US population= 320 million

1. Assuming the population is evenly distributed between the age groups of 0-80. Discounting infants aged 0-5:

age 5-10: 20 M;

10-20: 40M;

20-30: 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

30-40 : 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

40-50 : 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

50-60 : 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

60-70 : 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

70-80 : 40M (20M Men; 20M Women);

2. Assuming that population ages 5-20 yrs goes to the salon once every month-male and female alike.

3. Assuming that in the population aged 20-80; 80% men use the salon, and 90% women use the salon. The rest go for DIY or are bald or need less haircare. Also, salon customers in this group uses the salon once a month. Assuming, a typical men's service takes half an hour and women's service takes one hour.

Thus total service hours required would be: 60M*.5+120M*0.8*0.5+120M*0.9*1.5= 240M hrs. per month

4. Now, assuming salons are basically of two types- boutique (3 service areas per salon-80% of market) or Large (6 service areas per salon-20% of market)- and are open 6 days a week for 12 hours per day.

Thus, number of boutique salons= (270M*.8)/(3*6*12)=1M

& number of large salons= (270M*.2)/(6*6*12)=.125M

Thus, total number of salons would be about 1.125M.

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Anonymous A replied on Jan 15, 2020

Hi everyone,

I have difficulties in structuring the market sizing cases... how do you recomment to structure it? using an equation or writing down an issue tree? what is the difference?

Thanks a lot

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Msid replied on Feb 24, 2019

Let's assume one hair salon serves 1000 customers a year.

Let's assume that we US population of 300M and 20% don't go to a hair salon.

Then there would be 240M people in a year who would need to visit a salon.

# of salons in US = 240M/1000 = 240K

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Joe replied on Nov 28, 2018

Hi, let me try working on this from the bottom up approach (from demand).

The assumptions I'm going to make are:

1) Total US population: 320Mn

2) 50% split between Males and Females

3) 2 segments within Males and Females. Males - (The metrosexuals and the average Joes, whose demands are twice a month and once a month respectively). Females - (The fashionistas and the plain janes whose demands are once a month and once every 3 months respectively).

4) 10 seats in a hair salon, running at 50% capacity, taking 20 minutes per haircut and open 8 hours a day.


I'll start with Demand first.

Following the assumptions, we come out with total demand for Males to be 2880 (round to 3000 Mn for easy computation) and Females to be around 1280 (round to 1200 Mn for easy computation).

Total Demand in a year would be 4200 Mn.

On the supply side, we know each salon can serve 120 customers a day. (24 cuts a day per seat, working at 50% capacity, x 10 seats). Which translates to 840 customers a week, and (multiply by 50 weeks) 42000 customers a year.

Hence, the total number of salons in this case would be 100,000.

Doing a quick sanity check, that'll be about 3200 customers catered to, per salon in the USA, which i find to be okay.

Best regards,


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