I am building an app where my customers will be businesses like hair salons,manicure etc. Business users will have to register of course.

The (business) user when registering must say what type of business it is and choose from a list for this.

Here is the issue: I have decide for reasons of brevity maybe it is better that the above businesses mentioned come under the term cosmetics(or maybe a more apropriate term)…instead of offering 2 options(or more for relevant businesses) in the registration form to choose form…I will offer only one.

Yes is it good for brevity but I am afraid this might confuse the users and put them in doubt as to where they belong.

The above sentence describes the problem...more or less. What do you think? I hope I was clear.

  • If it's an English site you want Cosmetic (singular) Services. Cosmetic = to do with appearance. Cosmetics (plural) are THINGS, like lipstick which are applied to change appearance.
    – PhillipW
    Commented Dec 16, 2020 at 19:24
  • it is not an english site....your corrections though are more than welcome...I did not know the distinction you mention...I am not a native english speaker but I am always eager to learn to speak and write better the English language. Commented Dec 17, 2020 at 10:01

3 Answers 3


At first look, your question seems to be about terminology, but from your description, I understood the real issue is if you should have fewer categories risking to confuse users or a larger number of categories, risking over-categorization.

In my opinion, users should register in the exact subcategory, but you should have in the database that subcategory marked as a child to the category.

After this, how you display the businesses is another discussion. Over-categorization could cause some usability issues, like preventing users from combining service types to match their needs if this is a feature in the website or compare prices.

  • you understood the issue correctly and I agree with you.I have 2 questions though....why in the db have the subcategories marked as childern of the category...and regarding the display...are you referring to the aesthetics or the fact that these subcategories MUST be shown that hey belong to a "top" category? Can you be more clear about that? Commented Dec 19, 2020 at 16:47
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    @DimitrisPapageorgiou The database thing is more a dev issue, I just wanted to say it is better to group somehow the categories, to differentiate a subcategory from a category because it may be ok at the beginning to treat all like categories if you have just a few services/ businesses, but in the futures, you could need to display the businesses in the categories. For the register is better to have specific information, it is ok to display the info in the business details. After this, you should analyze other aspects when you filter the business by category to avoid over-categorization. Commented Dec 19, 2020 at 20:06
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    By displaying the businesses, I mean the category page or the search page, or the menu where a user sees them. If you have subcategories with just a business, I think you should reconsider and test if it is ok to be that specific in the categorization, that could be a filter. Commented Dec 19, 2020 at 20:19
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    ..so to recap…in the registration the categories mentioned must be specific….meaning I will use manicure and hairstyle as separate categories for the users to choose from and NOT use a cosmetic services category…I hope I understood well Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 13:09
  • Yes, this is what I would do. Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 18:25

I thinking you should try a Card sorting with your users, to understand how they thinking and prefer.

We can help you, but our opinion could be differente from your users.


I'd recommend you test this out with your clients. There are also keyword tools you have leverage (plus digital marketing options such as adwords) that give a clue as to what people actually search for.

FWIW, "cosmetics services" sounds weird. "Personal Grooming" might be a better option. Try card sorting or running a few wireframe A/Bs past customers....

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