I really could write a book about Salon Etiquette and ways you should and should NOT treat any salon professional, and some day I may just do that! It amazes me at the absolute lack of respect we as hairdressers (especially female hairdressers) receive from the public. I am famous for saying would you treat or talk to your Doctor or Dentist this way? I realize that there are a TON of unprofessional salons and hairdressers out there, trust me. In fact I already covered how to find the PERFECT hairstylist in an earlier blog. So I guess you can consider this an extension of that topic and once you are in the right salon and working with your perfect hairstylist the following are tips and suggestions of what NOT to do!
1. Give Salon at least 24 hours notice of cancellation
Most professional salons do have an cancellation policy in place. But, even if they don’t, be respectful and cancel your appointment if you know you can’t make it. Yes, emergencies do happen and all of us understand, this is not about that at all. This is for those of you who decided to change plans, go shopping, to the beach or just decided you didn’t feel like going to your appointment that day. CALL and cancel and give the salon time to be able to fill that spot. Most salons also have a cancellation list and with ample time could easily fill that spot! Stylists only get paid on what they bring in, you are their paycheck! Be respectful and call!
2. Respect the fact that your Stylist is a Licensed Professional
You do NOT know more about hair, how to cut/style hair or how to color hair than your hair stylist. We go through 1500 hours of school just to get a license, not to mention the years of experience we have and the extended education most professsionals get to stay updated. Respect the fact that we know what we are talking about and how to execute the look you are going for. I am pretty sure you don’t tell your Doctor how to diagnose you and what medicine or tests you need any more that you tell your dentist how to put your filling in. I am serious people, this is a huge problem that we encounter and it really isn’t right. Also, just so you know, Men and Women both go through the same training to become cosmetologists so one doesn’t know more than the other!
3. All things Tipping
This is the service industry and it most definitely should be all about you! However, if you are happy with your service you most definitely SHOULD tip your stylists! If your hair stylist is also an owner they deserve a tip as well (gosh, us salon owners need a bigger tip if anything)! The ONLY time you would not tip the owner of a salon is if they are simply running the salon and not actually doing hair. I am not sure where that whole theory went wrong, but now I have clairfied it for you. How much? Usually the rule follows the same as a restuarant, 10-15% is standard and 20% if you really love what they did for you. My salon does have assistants who shampoo etc. and most people DO tip them. I don’t want my clients to feel they have to do so, because I also share tips with them. But, if they did an excellent job of course your should tip them and 5% is usally standard. I don’t think you should feel pressure about tipping at all and I know I want that to be the last thing on my clients mind, but this is a big question I get a lot and wanted to address for you.
4. Check your Crazy at the door
Your hairstylist shouldn’t be making her problems yours anymore than you should be making yours hers! I want my clients who have had a bad day to come in, sit down and relax! I love hearing how much I made someones day just my doing their hair. God gave me broad shoulders for a reason! So often I have to tell myself that this clients attitude has nothing to do with me or their hair! I would just tell all of you that we really are NOT thereapists and we are here to make you feel better and give you an amazing hairstyle! Don’t take your day out on us! I could go on and on about this and could I tell you some STORIES, but I am not going to and I think you get the point (we’ll save those stories for my book).
5. Treat People how you want to be treated
Isn’t this just the easiet concept? One would think so wouldn’t they? I take the time to treat my client the way I would want to be treated if I were to go into a salon. So, the same goes for you as the client. Treat your stylist the way you would want to be treated! Do you want me to talk on the phone while I cut your hair? Do you want my kids running around you and jumping on your furniture? Do you really want me doing your hair if I am sick as a dog? Get where I am going with this? It amazes me at what people think is acceptable in public or a place of business. I can’t beleive this problem needs to be addressed, but it does. Our salon has a cell phone policy because we want our clients to relax. We don’t have a no kid policy because we love them and have lots of little clients. I should not have to tell you to watch your kids if you have to bring them. I suggest you don’t bring them unless they have an appoitment. I don’t go to work if I am sick so, if you are sick, then please cancel becasue I don’t want it (really clients come in hacking all over the place, I am not kidding). While we are are this topic, your stylist does NOT deserve crap from you if she is out sick! We are NOT superheros, we are human and we get sick (usually because one of you came in sick and gave it to us). Be respectful and sympathetic…PLEASE! So remember TREAT OTHERS AS YOU WANT TO BE TREATED!
So there you have it, tips on what not to do and how you should and should definitely NOT treat a professional hair stylist. Maybe I got to vent a little bit today, but I do feel that this had to be addressed! In fact, before I wrote this blog, I did a google search on this topic to see what was being said about it. I really found NOTHING except how to tip, so that proved to me that you all need this information. Please pass it along to everyone and I most definitely welcome questions. I know there is even more I didn’t address and that is why I think I need to write a book!
Licensed cosmetologist and owner of The L Factor Salon Twin City Plaza Brewer, Maine
Mary Kay Senior Consultant
Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org