Monday, 1 October 2012

An open letter to afro/black hair salons 4

Honesty, is it so hard? 

Dear salons,
When a customer walks in and asks if you can do Rihanna's latest hairstyle, and you have no idea what Rihanna looks like, this is a good time to be honest. 
When a customer walks in and says she wants to do the hairstyle she has ripped out of a magazine, and you have no idea what the grainy picture represents, please be honest. 
When a customer with natural hair comes in and you have only ever worked with natural hair to relax it, please just be honest. 
You get the idea. It is so simple to say, 'I have never tried that before' as then the customer can choose to take an informed risk.
Saying that you can do the hair, and then halfway through making excuses such as, 'but Rihanna is a celebrity and she has 5 stylists' is not going to wash. 
Other known excuses include, 
-it's the wrong hair type for this weave. (You should have seen that at the start)
-her hair is natural, that is not a weave. (same as above)
-her head is smaller than yours/she is prettier than you etc (insert expletives here or not)

This is particularly annoying as this is usually halfway through the day and the customer has wasted their day. (as mentioned in a previous post)
So dear salons, once again. This does not make you look clever, it simply makes you annoying.


Any other excuses or annoying experiences related to this? Let us know. 

for a better salon experience


  1. I know this is late and I think its been posted before but here goes. For the most part, my beef is with Ugandan salons and to a very small extent a handful of US salons. In Uganda, some salons are popular because of the one really good stylist. This one stylist could be really great with the flat iron, or great at cutting hair or pretty much great at everything. And without a doubt these stylists prestige is worth the talk. At the same time I realize that stylists or salon workers are paid commission or for each client they handle, so often some stylists try and work on as many clients as they possibly can. I understand this phenomenon.
    So (My beef) is the deception in salons. When you make an appointment/do a walk-in, typically your first question is what the schedule of that popular stylist is and if she/he's available to do your hair. Countless times the receptionist will sit you down and tell you the popular stylist is available, then introduce you to someone else to 'only wash your hair', and this hair washing turns to conditioning, setting, drying, pretty much the whole shebang. The popular stylist does not get to do your hair at all.
    I hate having to make an appointment to get my hair done by say Mr. X and then get deceived and get my hair done by girl Y. This is what hurts the most; chances are girl Y is so inexperienced. Sometimes, you know more about what should be done than girl Y. At times girl Y is actually the girl that cleans the floor, delivers food or the one who's responsible for washing the towels, so all she knows about hair is what she saw someone else do.
    Which leads me to my second beef with salons, sometimes, the stylists need to listen to the clients. I /We recognize that they are experienced with hair but sometimes we've had the hair on our heads longer than they have been stylists. We know our inherent hair problems and a few of us are not a one size fits all client. Right here I speak on behalf of the girls who have sensitive scalps. A handful of girls are tired of paying their money at an expensive salon only to leave with wounds on their scalp and non-straight hair. Stylists often confuse ‘my scalp is sensitive’ with my previous stylist was inexperienced. Stylists are also quick to recommend using ‘mild relaxers’ or ‘kids relaxers’ or lye relaxers or whatever which honest to God at this age, especially for those with sensitive scalps everything has been tried. I’m sure there are other inherent problems that only the one person has that just doesn’t get listened to and when all is said and done, the stylist goes like OMG you were right, this actually happens.. I’ve never seen this before, and you feel like slapping a fool .
    I know this is typically going to be followed with the question, why not stick to the one stylist who knows the inherent problem. In Uganda, stylists change jobs and phone numbers so frequently, its hard to track and follow them. I guess which brings me to point number 3. These good stylists, should have more ads or something, like a facebook page or something along those lines so that we know where to find them and we are better able to keep up with them as they hop from one salon to another .

  2. Thanks for this post. The deception is ridiculous.
    We will have a part on our site where we will support hairstylists adverts. Even without them advertising, we will list all the salons that we know about to give you a chance to rate them and therefore let people know if it is worth going or not.

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