As a child I had always kept my hair long. It was an extremely blunt cut, just straight across. Really simple, something you can’t screw up. This led me to believe, quite falsely, that my hair was fool proof. As a young woman I got into the idea of screwing with the formula. First I tried to color it with a kit, I used this cherry cola color and it looked really cool. However it felt dry compared to the usual silky texture so that put an end to my dying desires.
My next step was to try various hair cuts, these hair cuts seemed like a series of disasters. Few and far between were the excellent haircuts, and when I did find a great stylist they often moved and I had to start over. I have learned a lot from my experiences and have compiled the following list so that you may benefit from my disasters:
- Make sure to think about when you schedule your cut. It may take longer than an hour. So you want to make sure that it’s not to close to lunch or to closing, this may make them rush through your cut. Now a good place will never rush through a haircut, but if you are new and are unsure it’s a good rule to start with. I made the mistake of being a walk-in with an hour till lunch. I have a lot of hair and the cut she was supposed to do (the Asian Mullet :)) required a lot work texturizing after about 40 minutes she had finished one side. Then fueled by what I assume was hunger she decided to give the other side a blunt cut. I essentially had two different haircuts at once. It was terrible.
- Why didn’t I say anything? This brings me to my second point, it is important that you be able to communicate with your stylist. The lady did not speak English too well. But problems communicating can also occur when you speak the same language. You know what I’m talking about, it happens in everyday life, two people having what seems to be one conversation with each person talking about two different things. It’s hysterical if you are just listening as a third-party, but awful for haircuts.
- Which is why you should learn their terms, like texturizing, side swept bangs, shag, bob, layers, disconnected layers, blunt cut and so on. Knowing their special little language of hair can help you get to the hairstyle you desire.
- Keep the dialog open, if you see something you have questions about ask. If he or she is cutting in a way you don’t understand, say something. But say it nicely, remember they are holding extremely sharp shears/razors/scissors by your head.
- Bring pictures, even if you describe what you want, you may end up with something different. Pictures help to establish a visual common understanding of what you cut will look like. If there are issues you could always go back (although I did bring pictures but I think it was a matter of work ethic).
- Get a recommendation. Ask around, see people who are happy and ask how their experience was. You want someone you feel comfortable with and it’s also nice to see their work before hand.
- If you don’t like it, go back. Normally a good salon wants to make you happy and will try to fix a bad haircut. Remember they want you to come back. Last year the gal I normally see was busy so I took a spot with another girl who had a lot of experience. I was really unhappy with the cut, and when I mentioned it her response (with a smirk) was, “well you’re stuck with it now.” Not good customer service. I had wanted to color my hair (first time in a long time), so when I went back to my normal gal and she fixed the cut and did a great job with the color.
- When you find someone you really like try to get their number, because when they’re gone they’re gone.
You do take a risk every time you sit in someone’s chair, but having a game plan helps. I also think it’s worth it to find someone good. Maybe go with the less adventurous cut the first time and work up to that crazy chop it all off look when you become more confident in their skills. I know it’s only hair and it will grow back, but I also know it takes a while and our hair is our crown and glory. So try to take care of it by finding the right person. I also think it’s OK to splurge a bit on the cut, after all you will be wearing this for a few months ever day. But don’t judge someone’s talent on the price tag alone. Tip well if you can, I don’t think a hairdresser’s career is too long, a lot of them end up with hand health issues. In the end you will find someone who you trust and understands your hair needs.