Whether you’re trying a new salon or are a frequent flyer at your current salon, here are a few things to keep in mind in order to have a great experience and get the most out of your appointment!
Salon Etiquette: A Few Things You Should Know
Written by Audrey Sundqvist, Hairstylist at Urban Betty
Be On Time
1. How late is too late?
15 minutes is usually the cutoff for most stylists. We usually book on the 15’s in order to keep our timing in line with our scheduled appointments for that day. If you show up 15 minutes late for your appointment you may be asked to reschedule to a different time/day. This isn’t meant to be mean and we certainly understand that unexpected things can happen to make you late, but we can’t adjust the processing time on our other guests who may have chemicals on their hair. If you’re running behind for your appointment we suggest calling the salon ASAP to let us know! That way we can make adjustments for you (if possible) or get you rescheduled over the phone to save you the trip.
Side note: We believe a phone call is also something you should expect from your salon if your stylist is running behind. Mindfulness of others’ time is a two-way street!
2. If you're on a time restriction?
This is something I’ve noticed is becoming more and more common because it’s 2019 and we’re all running around like crazy! There are 1000 things to get done that day and, though you’re planning on getting a full highlight/toner/haircut, you tell your stylist that you need to be finished by a certain time. We get it—there never seems to be enough time in a day. However, please understand that we can’t always rush the process of your services—nor do we want to. When we feel pressured to get you out of our chair in 1/3rd of the time we usually need for you, the chances become higher of color mishaps and problematic haircuts. If you’re aware before your appointment that you’re running a tight schedule we’d rather have you call to reschedule your appointment to a time when you’re not so pressed OR please be open to having less services done during your appointment. This could mean less foils, skipping the haircut, or maybe leaving the salon without a finished style (which we HATE!)
1. Is it ok to use my phone during my appointment?
Of course you can use your phone! We just ask that you be mindful of how and when you’re using it. General rule of thumb is as long as the phone isn’t interfering with the process of the service then it’s totally fine. Texting is okay 95% of the time. From my experience, the only time I’ve had an issue with a client texting on their phone is when I’m trying to shampoo their hair because it affects the angle of their head and I’m unable to reach certain areas with water. I’m a little less tolerant when my clients talk on their phones while I’m trying to apply color, foils, cut, shampoo or blow dry (so, most of the appointment). When you’re holding your phone to your ear you’re almost always going to affect your stylist’s ability to do what they need to do—so try to hold off on the phone calls until your color is processing or after your appointment.
Side note: It’s my professional opinion that your stylist should not be on their phone during your appointment either unless they’re attending to your appointment time (e.g. looking up your color formula, scheduling your next appointment etc.). It’s our job to be 100% invested in you while we’re working on your hair and you have every right to hold your stylist accountable for that!
1. How much should I tip my stylist?
The general rule of thumb is 15-25% of the total service amount if you’re satisfied with your experience, although it’s not mandatory. If an assistant helped with your service and you aren’t sure how to tip them please ask your stylist how they’d prefer to handle it. Some salons allow their assistants to receive direct tips while others get tips directly from their stylist.
2. What if I'm not satisfied with my experience? Should I still tip?
If you’re not satisfied with your experience then we always ask that you speak up and let your stylist, front desk, or management know immediately after your appointment or as soon as you notice something isn’t quite right. Again, although tips aren't technically required, it’s still much appreciated to show courtesy for the time your stylist took with you, especially if they provided good customer service and the error is just technical. Most of the time you won’t be losing out on your investment because most salons will fix the technical error at no additional charge. If the customer service didn’t meet your expectations then you shouldn’t feel any obligation to leave a tip, but always let management know if this happens!
Side note: Did you know that Urban Betty Salon has a “Meet Your Stylist” quiz? It’s SO cool because it matches you up to a stylist based on your personality and needs—which (in my opinion) usually leads to a better service experience! Check it out at: https://salon.meetyourstylist.com/urbanbetty
Bringing Children to Your Appointments
1. Should you do it?
As a mom without any family around, this is a tough one to answer because I understand the struggles of finding a babysitter (not to mention the cost). However, after 13 years of working in a salon, I’ve seen a lot of parents show up to their appointments with kids and more often than not it’s created a more stressful environment for everyone involved. Even the most angelic kids tend to get restless by the end of a color appointment and before you know it they’re spinning salon chairs like playground equipment, going through station drawers, and running around—all of which are incredibly dangerous. I’ve seen children fall off chairs, find shears (which are like 1000 times sharper than regular scissors), and accidentally burn themselves on hot curling irons. Just please, try to find child care for the duration of your appointment so that way you can relax and enjoy your experience! If you’ve had a sudden change of arrangements with your childcare then it’s totally okay to call and reschedule your appointment—we understand!