Sally dreams of opening her own beauty salon and it's up to the player to help her. Sally begins with a small shop in the local mall and when that is successful, she branches out to open more franchises in other areas.
Sally's Salon is a time management game where customers file in through the door desiring a variety of beautification services. These include hair washing, coloring, cutting, styling, drying, and eyebrow styling. Customers indicate what service they want next with a pictorial balloon above their heads. The player must guide them to the appropriate station in the salon and service the customer. The customers must have their needs met in a timely manner or else their satisfaction meters (measured in hearts) will decrease along with prospective tips. Customers will eventually leave if they are dissatisfied enough.
Between days at the beauty shop, Sally can use her profits to purchase upgrades for the beauty shop such as more stations, faster equipment, and waiting area amenities for keeping the customers patient. Sally can also hire assistants to staff various stations, thereby lessening her own burden.