The True Cost Of Beauty Treatments: Procedures and Cost Breakdowns (2018 Update)


This is one for the ladies out there: Look good, feel good.

Do you ever find yourself endlessly scrolling through your social media feed and wishing you could look like this, be as skinny as this, be as pretty as this. But what exactly is this?

Who wouldn’t want to look good? As practical and shallow this may sound, looking good affords us with a sense of confidence. Let’s face it. We live in a highly practical world, especially during a time where social media fuels almost everything: people judge one another based on their looks. If you don’t know the person personally, the only thing left to judge them on is their looks.

All of a sudden, we see that an uploaded picture is not just a picture anymore. It becomes an object of scrutiny, where people use it to base their standards on what beauty should be. These unrealistic forms of beauty may pose significant threats to young girls and boys, especially when they have been exposed to such skewed beauty norms at such a young age.

That being said, let’s leave this story for another day.

With the increasing pressure to conform to societal standards and feel positive about oneself, we have listed and broken down some of the more common forms of beauty treatments that most Singaporeans seek, including aesthetic procedures like Botox.

Basic Beauty Procedures

1. Haircut And Hair Colouring

If getting your hair cut at places like Snip Avenue or QB House isn’t for you, and you don’t wish to pay too premium a price just to get your hair done, below is a list of hair salons that you will most likely find yourself in:

Hair SalonHair Cut (Price)Hair Colouring (Price)
Apgujeong Hair StudioFrom $20From $100
Kimage$40 or $20 (Junior Stylist)From $90 or $58 (School)
Shunji MatsuoFrom $43From $110
Pro Trim Korean Salon$43 (inclusive of wash + blow)From $110
LeeKaJa Korean Hair & Beauty SalonFrom $60From $120
Chez Vouz Hair Salon$70From $135
Toni&GuyFrom $70From $118

Total estimated cost each time: $50 for a haircut, $110 for hair colouring

2. Manicure/Pedicure

Are you at that stage where you can no longer afford to have your nails bare? If you are, then you’ll probably already have a go-to salon or are aware of the average costs of getting a manicure or pedicure. For those who are unaware, most people would opt for Gel nails because it lasts longer and is much more cost effective. One can get an express gel manicure from $16 – $25 and an express gel pedicure from $20 – $30 at places like Bugis Street or Far East Plaza. Of course, the more high end salons can start at $60 for gel manicures and pedicures. Do note that the prices stated above are not inclusive of any extra designs or nail art so if you are looking to give your nails that extra bling, be prepared to pay more.

Total estimated cost each time: $40 for a Gel Manicure and $43 for a Gel Pedicure

Mid-Tier Beauty Procedures

3. Eyelash Extensions

If those false eyelashes from drugstores don’t work for you, and you’re looking at something that lasts longer, then eyelash extensions are just the thing for you! Eyelash extensions can cost anywhere between $70 – $80 for trial sessions and between $80 – $180 and more, for subsequent sessions, depending on the kind of eyelash extensions you are looking at (single lash extensions, volume lash extensions etc.)

Total estimated cost each time: $130
Check in-store if they have any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

4. Eyebrow Embroidery 

The feeling of not having to fill in or draw your brows with an eyebrow pencil can really save you time, lots of time. The best part is that this time saved could be put to better use, like getting that extra 10 minutes of beauty sleep. There are many forms of eyebrow embroidery available (3D/6D eyebrow embroidery, Classic eyebrow embroidery, Gradient Brows etc.) so it is important that you exhaust all options before deciding on one that suits you. Prices range from $215 for basic eyebrow embroideries and can go up to $2000 for a session of Ombre brow resurrection at Browhaus.

Total estimated cost each time: $300 – $600 (including a touch-up session) depending on the type of eyebrow embroidery you choose
Check in-store if they have any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

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5. IPL

What exactly is IPL? A term we constantly hear but can’t quite seem to get our heads around. IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) is a form of permanent hair removal treatment where a broad spectrum of high intensity light targets the pigments in our hair by killing the hair follicle and prevents new hair from growing. IPL treatments are done across sessions and vary between underarms, arm, leg or bikini line. Treatments for underarms and bikini lines can cost anywhere between $38 for unlimited sessions to $80 per session. Usually, people will return once every 2-3 months for follow-up treatments. On the other hand, full body IPL Brazilian waxing can cost between $240 to $650, depending on the salon that you go to.

Total estimated cost: $38 for unlimited underarms and bikini line IPL / $445 for full body IPL services
Check in-store if they have any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

High End Beauty Procedures

6. Botox

A widely popular cosmetic procedure, Botox helps in smoothing out wrinkles and fine lines, minimising pores, slimming the jaw as well as firming up lose skin. A few tiny injections are administered onto the skin which temporarily paralyses the muscle, so that it can no longer contract, therefore relaxing the muscle and preventing any frown lines or wrinkles from emerging. Depending on the dosage used and area administered, each area of Botox can range between $100 – $1,800 and people usually go back after six months for follow up treatments. Below is an estimated cost breakdown of the different Botox procedures:

Botox ProceduresRequired UnitsCost
Forehead lines (horizontal lines)8 – 25 units$200 – $750
Glabellar lines (frown lines)8 – 20 units$150 – $600
Crow’s feet lines (lines beside eyes)8 – 20 units$150 – $600
Bunny lines (nose wrinkles)4 – 10 units$100 – $500
Gummy Smile4 – 8 units$150 – $500
Downturned Lips4 – 8 units$150 – $400
Chin dimpling4 – 8 units$100 – $400
Jaw Botox40 – 80 units$350 – $1800


7. Clear + Brilliant Laser

Similar to Botox but less invasive, this form of gentle laser treatment utilises fractional laser technology to prevent signs of ageing, minimise pores and remove any fine lines around one’s face. It is also a relatively quick procedure, lasting about 30 minutes. For optimum results, doctors recommend going back for five more rounds of treatment.

Total estimated cost: $642 per session, with a trial price of $321
Check with the clinic for any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

8. Fractional Erbium Laser 

This procedure works for sun damage, fine wrinkles, melasma, acne scars, enlarged pores and improves one’s skin tone and texture. There are many forms of treatments for this such as the Fraxel and Fraxel Dual which involves the Fraxel laser creating tiny ‘microthermal’ zones deep into the skin which the skin repairs by pushing out old skin damaged from the sun and replacing it with new skin. It also quickens the production of collagen and new, healthy skin cells. For optimum results, doctors recommend going back for 2-5 sessions.

Total estimated cost: $400 – $800 per session
Check with the clinic for any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

9. Lasers To Treat Vascular Disorders 

Effective in treating conditions like red birthmarks, rosacea, angiomas and small varicose veins, such forms of treatment include Fotona, RevLite and V Beam Laser. Its long pulse Nd:YAG laser is able to penetrate to a depth of 5-6mm into the skin and this energy from the laser is absorbed by the blood into the vein, converted into heat, subsequently destroying the vein walls. For optimum results, doctors recommend going back for 2-5 sessions.

Total estimated cost: $250 – $400 per session
Check with the clinic for any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

10. Photopneumatic Therapy

If you find yourself constantly fighting a losing battle with acne, this is the treatment for you! A form of this treatment includes the Isolaz, which combines light therapy and pressure for acne. Specifically tailored for Asian skin types, the Isolaz treatment consists of a wand that uses negative air pressure to remove the oil-producing sebaceous gland at the bottom of the pore into its tip. Inside the tip, the oil gland is exposed to blue and red light as the vacuum pressure sucks out the dead skin cells, compacted skin oils and acne bacteria. It thus cleans, disinfects and heal all current acne lesions, while preventing future breakouts from happening. For optimum results, doctors recommend going back for 8-16 sessions.

Total estimated cost: $80 – $120 per session
Check with the clinic for any ongoing promotions/packages which are often cheaper

The pursuit of beauty is endless. From basic to more high end ones, we’ve summed up a list of the more common forms of beauty procedures that most ladies seek. With the abundance of new beauty trends and treatments, it is unsurprising that we are shelling out more and more money. There is nothing wrong in wanting to take pride in our appearance, but it is also wise to do some additional research and find out which procedures are worth the money and which you can afford to forgo.