Well .... it's more than having enough to get started ... you will continue this throughout your entire career. It never stops .... spending money for marketing.
And unfortunatlely, there's no "standard" amount to start up a styling business. So you are right ... not too likely an investor would like the numbers, which are too vague to determine the risk.
However, for an aspiring stylist, it's rather simple but hard to grasp: the more time and money you can pour into it and the more you get your name out there, the more likely you will get noticed by those who hire stylists and the sooner you have a chance of making any money at all. I would say allow at least two years minimum, before you even get a paid job. And one job does not make a career. So, you have to not only cover expenses for tests, editorials and marketing materials, you also have to support yourself with minimal or no income from styling gigs. Even after you get a few paid gigs, they only last a few days each, you still have to go out an find the next one so it's very slow going for a lot of years.
So ... what most stylists do to get started is to minimize personal explenses (live at home, if possible or with a group of roommates to make rent cheap) and have a flexible job or two, where they can get time off when needed for tests and gigs. Many stylists, models and other freelancers often get jobs like waiting tables, bartending (where you can usually get another server to cover for you and you can work evenings) and working for a temp agency so you can schedule yourself.
That's about all the advice I can offer .... suck it up and live in poverty, pouring every extra dime you get into it, while you strive to make a name for yourself. And keep testing even if you aren't doing anything else ... because you are still networking and learning your craft, so that you are prepared when that opportunity might come along.
Last edited by BetteT; 13-11-2012 at 11:57 AM.