Don’t Fall For The Hair Okie Doke: How To Leave The Salon With What You Came For

January 14, 2013  |  
Salon Chair

We’ve all been there before. You head to a fabulous new salon to perk yourself up a bit, but wind up leaving feeling worse than you did when you walked into the place. While there may not be too much you can do to fix the current situation except grow your hair out or wait a few weeks to recolor, these tips will help you avoid any future hair scares and get the style you want the next time around.

Head Pain

If something hurts, speak up

There are many times that a relaxer burns someone’s scalp (scabbing is NOT normal, I don’t care what anyone says) and the client doesn’t say anything. There are also times when the client actually does speak up, but the stylist says hold on for one or two more minutes.  If it’s painful and you need it rinsed out, demand it.  The same thing goes for brushing and braiding. Too much tugging not only hurts your head, but can rip and break your hair. If you fear this may be your fate, make sure to let them know to be a bit gentler.

Black Woman Online

Do your image research

It’s always good to have a photo on hand of the style that you are aiming for to help minimize any miscommunication.  Take the time to flip through a couple of magazines or search online for the style you have in your head. It will be much easier to explain what you want when the stylist has a physical image in front of them.

Handshake

Go in beforehand to meet the hairdresser instead of relying on reviews and word of mouth

Some places work for others while they may not work for you. Make sure you feel comfortable, the salon can meet your needs and the stylist is able to address any questions or concerns that you have before you’re in the chair. Talking it out prior to getting something done is much easier than trying to go back and fix a negative experience. Plus, this is a good way to get a peek at the hair of the person who will be handling yours. If their hair doesn’t look right, it’s a pretty safe bet that yours won’t either.

Thinking

Be aware and honest about your habits

This includes how often you shampoo, how much time you can realistically spend on your hair, etc. Whether it’s that you rarely condition or that you tend to cut your own hair, your stylist needs to know everything in order to give you any necessary treatments for optimal hair health and the best ‘do for your lifestyle.

Black Woman Salon

Pay attention to what’s going on

Reading and gabbing can be fun, but can also be distracting to what’s happening with your hair. Always try to check yourself out in the mirror to see how your hair is shaping up and make sure to voice your concerns if you’re not happy with where the style is heading.

Length

Show instead of tell

If you’re talking about a length, it’s best to show the stylist exactly where you would like your hair to fall instead of saying things such as “shoulder length” or “ear length.” Every little bit counts and describing a cut in those terms can actually mean different things to different people.

Black Woman Stop

Put your foot down

If the stylist is pushing something on you that is a little too far out of your comfort zone, feel free to speak up and let them know. Whether it’s a hot new cut, color change or even something as small as moving the part in your hair, they should always listen when you say no. If they don’t, leave the chair. It doesn’t matter how much the stylist wants to try something new. You’re the one who will have to live with it in the end.

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  • chanela

    my stylist when i was younger would get hella aggressive on my hair and pull and tug and comb,hard whenever i nicely informed him that something wasn’t the way i wanted it. he was heavy handed as hell too.lol

  • bluekissess

    That’s exactly why I don’t go to salons. I’ve had conversations with the stylist a day before explained what I want and did the opposite. I’m spending a lot of money on a flat iron. 8 months natural and loving it.

  • psylocke_2001

    Yeah we really have to speak up and not worry about what the stylists may think. We are paying them, and we have to live with the style, so it may as well be the style we want.

  • KJ23

    GREAT ARTICLE!! I was once screwed over at a salon, and I’ve never felt comfortable going back. If I ever get the courage to go back, I’ll keep these tips in mind!!

  • Miyako

    In regards to “Pay Attention to What is Going On” – This is important, because I once had a hair braider in a salon braid my hair so tight (I told her specifically not to do that) that it created an instant bald spot. If I hadn’t looked in the mirror to see the work she had done so far, she could have permanently damaged my hair. Needless to say, she did not get to finish the braids or get paid for the wash and blow dry that she suggested I get.