Tax Write-Offs for the Beauty Industry: Lash Tech's Guide

March 22, 2018 by The Lash Professional. 

Artists don’t have to worry about taxes, right? Wrong. Sorry, lash babe, but if this is your first year on your journey toward a lash empire, you may be in for a surprise: You have to file your lash tech taxes. Yuck.

But there’s some good news: There are plenty of tax write-offs for the beauty industry. And with this quick and simple guide, you’ll have everything you need to take full advantage of them. Read on to get the scoop on cosmetologist tax deductions and how you can use them to make your business even more profitable.

Understanding Cosmetologist Tax Deductions

Before we dive into the deep end with a long list of tax write-offs for the beauty industry, you may be wondering “What even is a tax deduction?”. It’s pretty simple: Cosmetologist tax deductions are items you can use to reduce the amount of business income you have to pay taxes on. So, if you pull in $100K and come up with $20K in tax deductions, you only have to pay taxes on the remaining $80K.

That’s the goal, right? Nobody wants to pay their hard-earned income to the IRS, but we all have to. However, if you put these tax write-offs to work when you do your lash tech taxes, you won’t have to pay as much as you think.

Examples of Tax Write-Offs for the Beauty Industry

We know what tax deductions are now, but what does that mean in real life? Tax write-offs for the beauty industry can look a lot of different ways. Here are some of the most important ones to think about when it comes time to file your lash tech taxes:

  • Equipment. Tweezers, extension tools, glue, remover, primer, the extensions themselves, chairs, and any other equipment or supplies for your lash business may qualify as tax write-offs.
  • Rent. If you’re renting a space for your business, the rent you pay each month very likely will count as a cosmetologist tax deduction.
  • Advertising. You don’t have to pay for advertising for your business, but it’s a good idea to consider it if you want to grow your lash empire. A bonus? It’s a tax write-off for the beauty industry.
  • Licensing fees. The costs of your beauty license (as defined by your state’s laws) may be deductible from your lash tech taxes.
  • Improvements made to your business. When you put money into your lash business, you usually can deduct it from your taxes. Not all improvements qualify as tax write-offs for the beauty industry, so it’s important to check with a tax professional.
  • Business insurance. If you have business insurance like workers’ compensation, you may be able to subtract what you pay for it from your taxable business income.

It’s important to keep in mind that many of these cosmetologist tax deductions will only apply in specific situations. These write-offs are a good starting point, but it’s best to talk to a tax professional about what you can actually deduct.

Costs to Keep Track of when It’s Time to File Lash Tech Taxes

Ready for the truth? If you only start thinking about beauty industry tax write-offs around tax time, you’re going to have a hard time. Why? Because your friendly neighborhood IRS professional wants you to show your work. You can’t just guess that you spent $20K on rent. You need to prove it.

With that in mind, you need to keep detailed records about everything you spend for your lash business throughout the year. Keep receipts and break them down by dates and categories. Here’s a list of costs it can be helpful to keep track of:

  • Rent
  • Gas mileage when you travel for anything related to your business
  • Anything you spend sprucing up or redecorating your business space
  • Fees you pay for your business bank account and cards
  • Everything you pay for your website and other promotional assets
  • Any fees you pay for professional services for your business, such as legal fees, tax preparation fees, and similar

Grow Your Business with the Lash Professional

No one ever said lash tech taxes are easy, but they definitely start to feel a lot easier once you get a handle on all the possible tax write-offs for the beauty industry. At The Lash Professional, if there’s anything that can make a lash artist’s life easier, we’re here for it. And cosmetologist tax deductions are definitely going to make your life easier.

While we can’t do your taxes for you, we can hook you up with everything you need to start or grow your lash business. If you’re thinking about starting your lash business, check out our startup course. And if you want to level up your lash skills, we have courses for that, too. Something else our team can help you with? Contact us online or give us a call at (480) 588-5160.

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