Hair Salon Insider: 5 Things Your Hair Salon Wishes You Knew!

1. Your idea of what caramel highlights look like, may not be the same as mine.

When it comes to changing the color or style of your hair, make sure you and your stylist are on the same page. “What you see as beige or you see as gold could be completely different from what the stylist sees. People think they can read a magazine that says, ‘get butter highlights’, but what does butter look like? Or honey blonde? Are they talking about the color of those actual products?” says Will Johnson, owner of Whistle salon in the East Village. Having a detailed consultation with your stylist before the appointment will help to clear up any misconceptions. Another top suggestion is to bring a photo or magazine cutout, as it’s easier to visualize a haircut or color instead of trying to describe it.

hair salon post2.  Even though we are here to serve you and make you look beautiful, this is still a business.

How many times have you been late to an appointment? Or completely forgot to call and reschedule? While these minor slip-ups happen to everyone, it’s important to be courteous to your salon. Missing appointments or showing up late can really mess with the stylist’s daily schedule, thus affecting the quality of your service. No, the stylist won’t give you a chili-bowl cut out of revenge, but he or she may be forced to rush through your appointment in order to still meet with the other clients that are scheduled. Be polite. Show up on time, call if you’re going to be late, and reschedule in advance if you can’t make the appointment. You’ll end up with a much better salon experience.

3.  We aren’t miracle workers.

Oftentimes, women (some guys too) come into a salon wanting a whole new look. While it’s possible to make great improvements and updates through a cut or color… it is impossible to change your face shape, skin tone, facial features, or overall appearance. You will still look like you. “Clients look at someone like Halle Berry and want her hair color or hair style and to look like her. But the problem is she has this great mixed skin color, and it won’t look the same on a very pale person,” says Will. Be realistic with your expectations and be sure you’re comparing styles or colors with people who have similar features as you. There may only be one Halle Berry or one Angelina Jolie… but there is only one YOU… and you are beautiful too! Find your look and rock it.

4. We can only do so much during an appointment. Keeping your hair healthy is up to you.

Getting trims on a regular basis or not over-coloring are all important aspects of maintaining your hair’s health. Your stylist can do a lot of work during an appointment, but once you leave the salon, the rest is up to you. Talk to your stylist about their recommendations for maintaining your hair on a daily/weekly basis. Your stylist is already familiar with your hair type, texture, color, normal routine, etc. and can make great suggestions for maintaining healthy locks. My stylist, Michael Israel, at Comfort Zone on the UES said I needed to do weekly deep conditioning treatments and gave me a list of different products that would suit my hair. Following his advice really helped repair my damaged, curly locks.

5.  If you don’t like it, speak up.

Sometimes stylists will make suggestions for clients based on their own expertise or if the client isn’t sure what they want. Problems arise when the stylist is making suggestions that the client doesn’t like, but the client is too meek to say so. You won’t hurt the stylist’s feelings or make them mad, especially if you are polite. The stylist’s job is to make you happy with your look, so speak up and don’t be afraid to say “no thanks”. If you do find that the stylist becomes defensive or angry, leave immediately. Stylists who react negatively to their client’s wishes should be avoided, as their services will not be satisfactory. Save yourself the hassle of having to schedule an emergency appointment by openly communicating from the beginning.

Following these easy tips can really improve your time at the salon, and also increase the chances that you are satisfied at the end of your appointment. Head over to for more tips on healthy hair or to locate NYC’s best rated hair salons and barbershops.

More Salon Tips You Should Know:

5 Important Questions You Should Be Asking Your Hairstylist [Read]

The 4 Things You Might Be Doing That’s Driving Your Hairstylist Crazy [Read]

Does Your Hair Salon Show These 3 Important Qualities? [Read]

Love your hair. Love yourself.

About Kaylyn: Kaylyn is a frequent salon goer, hair enthusiast, and blogger living in NYC.

About is the web’s most trusted guide to style and hair. They have created a radically different review and search site that lets users quickly search for salons by various features. In addition, their review system puts emphasis of getting user’s true perspective on the overall salon or barbershop, services offered, and individual stylists or barber.