Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Losing The Cutting Edge

Most people who know who I am, know that I am...

A Hairstylists
A Cosmetologist
A Barber

Whatever you want to call it... I cut hair. I style hair. I color hair. Frankly, I am pretty good at what I do (even if you consider this a pat on my own back!), but I do specialize in barbering, more specifically, military haircuts.

I specialize in barbering... which is a great thing to do
when you have a young boy who needs regular
haircuts and a husband that
has a military haircut!
One of the most irritating things I hear, is when people cut down my specialty by assuming that cutting a guy's hair is so easy. Why do they assume it is easy... because they apparently assume the only thing I do is take a clipper and completely zip it all off.

Just because I use one of these on
the majority of haircuts, doesn't
mean the hair cut is easy!
It isn't like that. It is about matching the lengths and layering and perfection and checking your work. The reality is a man's haircut (or a short haircut) is actually much harder than a woman's haircut (or long hair trim).

The reason - because the shortness makes it hard to hide the mistakes!

With that being said, I think all hairstylists have the ability to be the best they can be, whether they specialize in men's or woman's hair. It is a matter of wanting to do a good job. So it sickens me when I hear people call certain shops "chop shops" because they think only the bad stylists work there.

It just isn't true. You can find a great stylist there just as easy as you can find a bad stylist at a very expensive shop.

The reason I say this, is because as a hairstylist, I know how to cut hair. But, unfortunately, I find it very difficult to do my own. While I could, it would just take me more time than I am willing to invest. So it is easier to pay someone else to cut it.

So last Friday, my husband took me to the salon to get my hair done. He had to force my hand because I frankly don't like being the one in the chair. I would much rather do someone else's hair than have mine done.

I don't have a good thing to say about the whole experience.

I went to a local salon here in the Hemet Area called On The Cutting Edge. I have been there once before and I absolutely loved what the last stylist did to my hair. She provided great service, was very personable and I can't say a bad thing about it. She made me want to return. Sadly though, she had left to teach by the time I returned.

This time, I can't say the same. Not to mention, this experience has far outweighed the positive experience prior and will keep me from giving them any return business.

I walk in the door and I am in a good mood. I let them know up front that I am a trained hairstylist. Maybe that was my first mistake, but apparently, it didn't matter to them at all. I know if it was me, that would make me attempt to do a better job because they will be able to find all the errors.

My husband told me to do color with the trim. I told him no because I could do it myself for a whole lot less. Like I explained earlier, I have a hard time sitting in a chair and being the client.

So the stylist assigned to me went back to her station. I say she went back to her station because she didn't lead me back there. I wasn't even sure if I was supposed to follow her. I couldn't name her because she never even introduced herself.
This was my haircut the last time I went there.
It is about a month grown out already, but
I still liked the style.

The first thing I noticed was her attitude. When I told her what I wanted, she asked me if I wanted to look at a book because she wasn't clear on what I was stating.

This is what I told her:
"I am not overly particular. In fact, I am always up for suggestions. You can do whatever you want. In fact, you are going to have to mess up pretty bad for me to be upset!"
Does that seem hard to understand? Obviously to her it was. So I showed her what my hair looked like the last time and she went from there.

There was no suggestions, there was very little consultation. She was obviously bored with her job and was never taught customer service.

I already have this figured out before she even went back to her station with out me, where she stared at me like I was supposed to know that I should follow her.

The first thing I noticed, her station was a mess. There was hair on her seat. It wasn't much, just a little.

She was obviously in
a hurry!
Whatever, I can look past those things. If you have been busy it isn't acceptable, but I do understand. I worked in the business and sometimes you just miss a few hairs.

I tried to get her into conversation. She resisted. She had my haircut done in 10 minutes flat. Toward the end, a mom with about 4 kids walked in. I jokingly said, "It looks like you are about to get busy."

Her response was a curt, "Well, at least it will make the time go faster until I get to leave at 3!"

Talk about bad attitude!

I made her cut my hair twice. First off, I am a bitch. I think she went too fast. Second off... if you are going to cut my hair the same way it was last time, don't give me the grown out version.

When she was done, she couldn't find a mirror to even show me the cut. When she eventually did, the mirror was so dirty, I could barely see anything. And then I was left in the chair as she walked up to the front to check me out. She never offered a wash afterwards to get rid of any lose hair. Apparently because I am a hairstylist, she assumed I didn't want that. But I did.

I walked next door to meet my husband who was completely shocked at how fast I was done. He was expecting me to have some pamper time and thought it would have taken longer.  That is when I noticed it was heavy on one side. After 10 minutes of seeing how bad it was, I knew I needed to go back and have it fixed.

We walked next door as she was finishing up a little boys haircut. When she saw me, she looked surprised. After all - she is obviously good at her job so why would I return.

I told her my hair was heavy on one side. She responded that it would be because she cut it with a part there. I never asked for it to be cut with a part. It was just the way I walked in with my hair. In other words, she didn't move it from how I came in with it. Her solution... thin it out.

She brought me back to her chair. She didn't even bother to clean her station up after the last haircut she did. She even watched me as I wiped the child's hair from her seat.


After a few snips, I told her it looked better. I am now a liar. It didn't look better. It was still heavy. It looked like shit. But, with the attitude she was delivering, I didn't need her hacking up my hair to a point of non-repair.

I went home and spent an hour and a half fixing it myself. 

This was the results of the haircut after
I spent an hour and a half fixing it!

It looks much better, even though there is still a lot of spots that need fixing. I will attempt that later in the week. Believe it or not, trying to cut your own hair, while watching yourself in the mirror, is a very difficult thing to do.

After a few days of thinking about this whole situation, I am still pissed. Normally, I don't like to call businesses and complain, but frankly, the manager needs to hear about this. After all, if the state came in this business would be heavily fined!

Needless to say, I am ashamed for them. After all, it is people like her that not only give business's the reputation of being a chop shop, but they also give all hairstylists a bad name.

For me, I like to make every experience the best one possible. 
Have fun with your job. After all, you will find it more enjoyable if you actually enjoy what you do.

I once suckered my client into a $10 tip... by challenging him to a snowball eating contest. Not only did he return to me weekly, but I also consider him one of my friends.

Being a hairstylist isn't just about cutting hair. It is about building relationships!


  1. You're braver than I am...I would have been like, "this sucks, so I'll go home and cut the rest," lol...good for you for speaking up. I need to follow your example more. :)

  2. My mom once treated me to a style and partial-perm (the top always gets flat and then curls halfway down - so she wanted the top permed to match). The stylist left the solution in my hair for over an hour. When I started to burn and bleed, I begged her to rinse my hair out. By the time I got home, my hair was crunchy and broke when I touched it.

    Mom called the manager and demanded the $168.00 back. We had to come back and show the manager the fried hair and my bleeding scalp. They tried to tell us that's the chances you take when you get a perm. I had to go to the doctor to get antibiotic ointment to put on my scalp. Since then (and I was 28), I've had a hard time getting my hair done, even a simple trim.

  3. That's shocking. It's not cheap going to get hair cut, and you're so right - it's about building relationships. You need to have a personality and interact with people when you cut their hair. I moved away from my hairdresser of 10 years. She was awesome. Knew everything about me, and I knew about her life too. Now, I get to go to the mall and wait 4 hours to get some highlights and a haircut. Half a freaking day. I've been to others who haven't said a word to me and it was so silent and awkward. I'm sorry your experience was so bad. Must be hard being a hairdresser on top of it, but I'm glad you were able to sort it out. It looks very funky, I like it. :) My sister-in-law is a hairdresser and she just stayed with us for 3 weeks. She cut my husband's hair, and I now have new respect for hairdressers who cut short hair. It's not easy at all. She did a great job. I really hope you complain and they give you a refund/discount or something. That type of service is not acceptable. Actually, they should fire her ass, and get in someone who is actually hungry for the job.

  4. There's nothing worse than a hair stylist with attitude, especially when they're in a foul mood because a shit haircut takes forever to grow out. Finding a stylist you like is even harder, I adore mine and if she left London I would grieve for months.


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