One of the best things about a professional hairstylist-client relationship is that it can easily be ended. You can just stop asking for the hairstylist’s service in the same salon or change salon locations (i.e., from Branch A to Branch B). You should know, however, when to break off a professional relationship especially when it has been in place for several salon sessions.
Here are a few cases when breaking up with your hairstylist is the best thing to do. Just always keep in mind that you will not exactly hurting your hairstylist’s feelings since it is part of his job to please the customer – you, in this case – and you are not pleased with his services.
When you start saying things along the lines of, “That’s not what I actually had in mind”, you should immediately assess whether to give your hairstylist another chance or speak up about it before changing hairstylists in your next appointment. While setting realistic expectations about the appearance of a Hollywood star with an army of stylists and your appearance in her current hairstyle is a must, your results should not be too far off either. Your expectations about the cut or color, or both, should be met, if not exceeded, by a great stylist.
When your expectations are not met, you are well-advised to keep these tips in mind to resolve the situation before you walk out of the salon’s door:
- Be courteous in your words and actions. Even with the mistakes made by the hairstylist, you will likely get positive results with a calm and professional approach to the problem. You may even have the manager’s sympathies on your side, which means faster resolution including a free fix.
- Be very specific about your issues with the hairstyle. Are you disappointed with the cut (e.g. less layers) or with the color (e.g., green hair strands where none should be)?
- Be sure to outline your prior agreement about the style, cut or color with the stylist. You will then be able to compare and discuss the differences between the expected and actual results.
You can obviously give the erring hairstylist a second chance but you may not also want to when there are other mistakes. You want to walk out of the salon feeling and looking like a million dollars, after all, and your choice in a hairstylist is a big part of it.
Just as you have rights and responsibilities as a customer, your hairstylist also has his own rights and responsibilities – and both parties must respect these aspects in a professional relationship for it to succeed. You have to be a gracious customer to receive gracious service and enjoy the best results, for example.
But when your hairstylist starts to exhibit unprofessional behavior, then you have to seriously think about ending the relationship, perhaps even ending it right there and then. A few examples of unprofessional behavior include:
- Giving services that were not agreed to beforehand. You may have asked for a trim but you were given a haircut, which lopped off several inches off your hair. You may also have asked for just a color job but you were also given a Brazilian blowout, which may make your tresses more beautiful but your wallets will take a beating for it.
- Socializing with other staff members and customers while attending to your needs or waiting for the chemicals to take effect on your hair. While low levels of socialization is part and parcel of a relaxing salon experience, your hairstylist should focus more on your hair procedure than on talking with others especially when chemicals are being applied on your hair. You should also not tolerate excessive phone use since it will interfere with the hairstylist’s job, in the same way that you should minimize your use of mobile gadgets while being styled.
- Asking too personal questions and/or giving too much personal information about his clients, family and friends. Again, you are in the salon for a great hairstyle instead of airing your dirty laundry, much less listening to malicious gossip about others. You should speak your mind when you feel that the hairstylist is intruding into your personal space and privacy but you should also respect his own privacy.
- Giving sassy answers to your relevant questions about the treatment especially when it’s your first time for it or you have a negative experience with it. You have the right to clear answers to your pertinent questions and you have to get it from your hairstylist. If you are being given sassy, insufficient, or rude answers, then you should change hairstylists now before you become the target of inappropriate behavior later on.
Breaking up with your long-time hairstylist can be hard to do but when your hair is at stake, cutting off ties is the better option than cutting off your hair in frustration.