I am currently in-between hairdressers at the moment. Mostly because of issues I have posted about before, but I’ve compiled a list of the top five things a stylist have done to lose me as a customer. Whether a high end salon or basic hair cuttery, these behaviors are noted across the board and are able to be utilized by any hair stylists in any venue.

1) Consultation

Most stylists do a consultation. In fact, none of them that I’ve ever gone to have simply started working without saying anything. What is lacking though, is a discourse of what you like or don’t like about your hair, how much time you’re willing to commit and the most important, the difference between fast and easy. An easy hair style could still take 30 minutes, whereas a fast one simply needs to take less time to look good.

2) Color

I’m not a commitment person, especially when it comes to my hair. Putting a permanent color on my hair means I’m going to have to come back and see you every six weeks until I shave it off or do something different. Say this up front and explain options. I’d be more willing to get a temporary color if that were an option. As I understand it, getting a cut, color and a blow out is more money in your pocket than a simple cut. Why a stylist wouldn’t want to make more money and build a relationship with someone who is willing to consider it is beyond me.

3) Products

I may not be interested in buying any, but you never know. By not talking to me about products you’re using on my hair, I’m never going to be able to replicate the look you just produced. As I understand it, most salons have a commission based on products sold. If you’re not going to even try to tell me about them, you and the business are losing out on money. Because I know good stylists should do this, by not doing so with me makes you seem lazy and uninterested. That’s not an incentive for me to come back.

4) Explanation

As with products, if my new ‘do requires styling, you’ll need to give me a run down on how to do it. Re-introduce me to the round brush, explain the best way to use the flat iron, and if it isn’t so ancient and dated, give me options with a curling iron. Walk me through the process as you’re finishing the style. This kind of discussion is way more interesting than the banal small talk, and is definitely a walking business card for your work. If someone compliments my style, I’m definitely going to say who did it, where they work, and how awesome they are.

5) Booking the next appointment

Nothing says, “Thank god you’re done. I never want to see you again” than letting me walk out the door without scheduling the next appointment. I’ve just made a major change to my appearance, I’m feeling good, but unsure. If you don’t follow up with a scheduled appointment before I leave that day, I’m lazy and very unlikely to call back to reschedule. Beyond that it smacks of a lack of confidence in the look you just took an hour to give me.