What Are Salon Gift Certificates?

B. Miller

Salon gift certificates are prepaid items that can be given as a present to an individual to allow them to spend it on a spa or salon treatment of their choosing. For instance, the gift giver might purchase a $20 US Dollar (USD) salon gift certificate, and give it to a friend as a gift; this person will then go to the salon and present the gift certificate in order to pay for the salon treatment he or she receives for the equivalent amount. Salon gift certificates are popular gifts for a number of occasions; most can only be used at one particular salon, though some have the option to be used at a number of different participating businesses within a chain.

A salon gift certificate might be used for a manicure.
A salon gift certificate might be used for a manicure.

Most salon gift certificates do not specify the particular treatment that an individual can receive in exchange for the certificate, especially those that can be used at any salon. In some cases, however, the purchaser of the gift card might want to specify that it can only be used for a specific treatment, such as a massage. In this case, it may be noted on the gift card. When purchasing or using salon gift certificates, whether or not they have been designated for a specific treatment, it is important to remember that the tip is not included.

A woman getting a pedicure at a salon.
A woman getting a pedicure at a salon.

A part of the popularity of salon gift certificates is that they are usually very versatile gifts; the recipient can usually use them for any treatment he or she chooses. This may include a haircut or style; manicure or pedicure; or skin treatment such as a facial or body wrap, depending on what the salon offers. Even if the recipient does not want to use the certificate on a particular treatment, it can usually be used to purchase salon products such as shampoo and conditioner, nail polish, or makeup.

There are a number of occasions for which an individual might choose to give salon gift certificates. Holidays and birthdays are always good choices, but some special events such as weddings represent excellent opportunities as well. Giving a gift certificate to a bride at a pre-wedding bridal shower or engagement party can be a great way to encourage her to treat herself before the big day. They are also great gifts for new or expecting moms, who often don't take time for themselves to relax. Some salon gift certificates can even be personalized with the person's name, or with a favorite photo, for an extra thoughtful touch.

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