What To Do (And Not To Do) When Going To a Hair Salon
Entering the Salon
1. Greet the receptionist and state your name, the name of the stylist you're seeing (if you know/remember), and the time of the appointment.
2. Follow the instructions the receptionist gives you (i.e. put on a robe, fill out a form, etc.) and sit down in the waiting area quietly. 99% of the time I just want peace and quiet to work on my other duties (totaling each stylist's sales, making tickets, creating schedules for the next day).
DON'T ask a million questions about the salon, the products, the scheduling, etc. Trust me, I don't want to answer them.
When the stylist comes to take you:
3. Collect your things and follow the stylist to your chair. You may ask for a beverage (if the salon provides that).
DON'T ask for juice, a smoothie, ice tea, or some other fancy drink. I'm a receptionist, not a barista, and this is a hair salon, not Starbucks. I can only give you water, coffee, or tea.
In the chair:
4. Clearly explain to the stylist what you would like to do with your hair. You may ask for a drink if the salon provides that.
DON'T invite your friends, your family, and the whole freaking neighbourhood to sit down around you and watch you get your haircut; it's not a spectator sport. Even if the stylists and assistants say your posse isn't in the way, they are. They can either wait at reception or leave the salon and come back later when you're done.
Going up to pay:
5. Greet the receptionist again, then state your name and the name of the stylist who did your hair (if you remember).
DON'T be surprised or offended if the receptionist doesn't remember your name and has to ask you for it. So many people come in and out of the salon every day that it's hard to keep track.
6. If you need to break a bill to leave a tip, WAIT for the receptionist to process your payment on the machine / count your money and give you your change first. If I had a dollar for every time some lady kept shoving a twenty dollar bill in my face asking for fives WHILE I WAS ALREADY COUNTING MONEY, PROCESSING A PAYMENT, OR BOOKING HER NEXT SEVERAL APPOINTMENTS, I'D BE RICH.
DON'T leave without tipping. It's rude and ungrateful, and now I'll have to listen to the stylist cuss you out after you leave. LEAVE A TIP FOR YOUR STYLIST! Also, leave a tip for the girl(s) who washed and/or blowdried your hair. They make MINIMUM wage for a job that is both physically and emotionally demanding, so getting tax-free, cash tips are really the only perk to their job.
7. If you are buying product, decide exactly what you want and don't want BEFORE the receptionist enters it into the till. Otherwise, I have to void whatever item(s) you no longer want, then add back in whatever item(s) you do want. It's a pain in the ass, especially for a new receptionist just learning the ropes, and especially if you do this multiple times. If you keep changing your mind back and forth about the products you're buying, it can seriously fuck up the till at the end of the day and get her in trouble.
DON'T ADD AND SUBTRACT PRODUCT(S) YOU WANT TO BUY MULTIPLE TIMES. If you're concerned about pricing and you'd like to know what the bill will be, simply tell the receptionist that you're not 100% sure what you're buying yet, and ask her politely to calculate the prices for you before you decide. That is a reasonable request, and she'll be happy to oblige.
8. If you are booking your next several appointments, suggest specific dates and times for the receptionist to check.
DON'T be vague, don't be indecisive, and if you can't figure out your schedule, just call in to book! DO NOT stand there changing your mind a million times and stressing the receptionist out if you don't know what your schedule is!! The telephone exists for a reason!
Speaking of telephones...
If you're calling in to make an appointment, get a price quote, or ask a question, and the receptionist puts you on hold, stay on the line! You are on hold because the desk is busy, so wait it out. If you don't want to stay on hold, try calling back in 20 minutes or so (but not immediately).
DON'T try calling in again on the other line. This makes me want to MURDER people. I PUT YOU ON HOLD BECAUSE I'M TOO BUSY TO TALK TO YOU RIGHT NOW, SO WHAT ON EARTH MAKES YOU THINK THAT IF YOU CALL AGAIN ON THE OTHER LINE I WILL SUDDENLY HAVE THE TIME TO PICK UP!?!! Take your head out of your ass and stay on hold, call back later, or leave a message (if it goes to voicemail, I am busy!).
9. If you're calling in and it goes to voice mail, be sure to leave a BRIEF message, stating EXACTLY what you want. Also be sure to state your name CLEARLY, as well as your number, SLOWLY, not once, but TWICE. This is basic telephone etiquette, but it's alarming how few people do this when leaving a message. There is almost nothing I hate more than a) having to guess the phone number they left and b) returning someone's message and not being able to address them by name because I couldn't make it out in their voicemail.
TLDR: Don't. Be. An. Inconsiderate. Jerk!
Are you a receptionist? Do you have any other dos and don'ts? Leave them in the comments below!
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