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Finding a Hair Stylist You Love to Visit
A Beautiful, Relaxing Environment is Key
Finding Someone You Can Trust
After numerous attempts at finding a dependable, quality hairdresser, I finally landed. I was at an event recently, and the first person I met, had amazing hair. Not elaborate, simple, highlights, layers that were blended and moved when she did. I call that dynamic hair. It is created by a true hair professional, and it doesn't seem to come often in a lifetime.
To be sure it wasn't an illusion, I observed her carefully throughout her hostessing, it never seemed out of place, as she went about her duties, greeting, serving and helping people. I subtlely (I hope) evaluated her hair from all sides and the conclusion I drew was that whoever cut her hair, knew her, knew her hair and cut and highlighted it to complement not only her facial structure, but her lifestyle. I just had to ask her the all-important question to women, "Who is your hairdresser?"
After the party concluded, I approached her quietly and asked if she would mind me asking who did her hair. Her answer was gracious and she encouraged me to try her out. It was her sister, who worked at a salon I was already familiar with because my own sister goes there. It is not the norm for me to intrude on her territory, but I did it because I was desperate for a good haircut. My gray was beyond all boundaries, and it was going to take a miracle.
I called for an apppointment after an acknowledgement that it probably would be a few weeks out because Dawn was a busy person. Due the expected bad weather the next day and a corresponding cancellation, I was able to secure time the very next day! It was meant to be, I thought to myself, although I have to admit, I questioned myself all evening. Was I brave enough to trust one more experiment? Armed with courage from the assurance that my friend's sister would not let me down, I made the 45 minute drive through snow and ice to arrive early. It is my general practice to be early for appointments because I like to minimized stress and unwind for a minute or two once I get there. It's part of my making life simpler plan which I work on daily.
Walking into Lotus Salon, I was not disappointed. I was greeted warmly by Karen, the receptionist who was quick to check me in, point out the restroom, and offer me a cup of hot anything I wanted. I used the facilities, then came back and sat down out of the view of my new hairdresser so that she could stay focused on her current client. Dawn, who made eye contact with me quickly by peering around the wall, let me know that she knew who I was and that I would be cared for shortly. These actions set them apart in my mind, and prompted me to think about writing this hub.
I asked for permission to take photographs, which I was granted easily by the owner, and began documenting what sets a salon and hairdresser apart from others. Comparisons between this salon and others caused this one to stand "head and shoulders" above the rest. These are a few of the things I believe we all should consider when we are paying for services to our well being and beauty:
1. What is the atmosphere of the salon? Do you feel welcomed when you enter your, or is the receptionist preoccupied with herself or other to the point of making you feel bothersome? How is the space, is it colorful, warm, modern, or old and hasn't been changed in years? Does the receptionist or other staff let you know that there are other services available to you, so you have the option to combine appointments when it suits you? Is it clean, well-lit, spacious?
2. Do they offer you anything to make you feel more comfortable while you are waiting? What is their practice if the hairdresser is far behind schedule? Do they keep you updated and informed if she is not visible to you? Do other stylists seem friendly, is there harmony, do they seem to work together for the good of the whole salon?
3. Does your hairdresser communicate with you? Does she ask you if you have any specifics on what you would like done? Is she willing to make suggestions to you for changes that can update your look or keep you ahead with new products that may be better for your hair or changing colors?
4. Is she committed to you being satisfied or is it just about the money? Does she converse with you while staying positive and confident that she knows how good you want to feel when she is done? Is she over scheduled to the point of making you feel like you subject to her tardiness or do you have an option to leave after a half hour of sitting there?
5. How would she treat you if you missed an appointment, accidentally? Does she keep a bad attitude toward you if it doesn't work for her every time?
6. Are you totally satisfied when you leave, or can you tell her you don't like some part of the work?
7. How do they handle you when you leave the salon? Are you excited about scheduling your next appointment?
As I sat down in the chair to begin my process, it was remarkable how easy it was to express my wishes to Dawn. Within 5 minutes, I completely entrusted myself to her expertise and care. She kept her promise not to cut my hair more than I requested, and the color process she did changed my look and softened it beautifully. She was organized, composed, professional and obviously well qualified to her calling. I knew it was going to be a good day, and afterwards as I had lunch with my good friend Shirley, all my delight was confirmed as she continually comment how great it looked. We like that kind of attention....all of us, I believe.
One of the things that particularly impresses me is knowing that the stylists and personnel are doing ongoing training in products. This is a sign to me that the management allows and provides opportunities to educate and further their professionals to become experts. I have been in salons where it was obvious that the owner was oppressive and opinionated. I really have no attachment or loyalty to people who just serve themselves or treat their professionals as objects, and I have been known to encourage a stylist to move forward in her career when she is clearly not happy. I found that at Lotus that day as well.
If you have found your stylist of a lifetime already, congratulations! If you have not, keep looking, he or she is out there, just waiting to make your day!