Looking for a new look? Here’s how to get a great cut
When we find a hair stylist whose work makes us look good, we tend to stay with that person for a long time. Monthly visits are one of the ways in which we pay someone to make us look and feel good.
But if your current style is starting to look dated, you may want to ask for something different. Or you may decide to visit a new stylist and experiment with different haircuts.
If you are nervous about trying something new, here are a few tips to give you confidence about making your request.
1. Study several styles before deciding what you want. Do a rough preview of the look by pulling your hair up or back to make it appear shorter, for example. Or “borrow” your daughter’s long blonde locks (with her head close to yours–don’t cut her hair!) to mix with yours to see how highlights would look. Never assume that a celebrity’s great looking “do” is right for you. Fuss with your hair on your own in a parody of various haircuts until you find one you’re willing to try.
2. Take a photograph. Clip that newspaper or magazine photo and take it to the hair stylist. A picture is worth a thousand words in describing what may be a very complex or unique look. When explaining what you want, include features like layers, color, waves, or highlighting. Most stylists will ask, but some might not, so offer the information in case. Understand that your desired coif might look differently on you than it does on someone else.
3. Monitor the stylist’s work. As the cutting begins, keep an eye on how short the shears go. Some stylists get carried away in evening up sides, while others may misunderstand how long you want your hair to be, photo notwithstanding. More than one client has sat down in the chair with a clear expectation only to get up looking far different than she expected. Don’t hesitate to remind the person cutting your hair of the ultimate goal.
4. Be pleasant. Compliant, upbeat customers who tip fairly get royal treatment from competent stylists. Don’t be fussy, critical, or complaining. Avoid a demanding tone. Be patient and yet proactive in attuning your stylist to your desired look.
5. Give it time. A new look can take time to get used to. Many customers with fresh haircuts dislike how they look on the first day, or even during the first week or so. Some arrange haircuts well in advance of a special event so the style has a chance to settle into a more natural look. If you don’t like how your hair turns out, see if the stylist can trim it a bit more or add layers. If you are concerned that something worse will happen, express your disappointment and ask if you can come back in a few days if you’re still not satisfied. Many salons offer a week to make it right, at no extra cost, with a customer who is not happy with the way a haircut or other hair service turns out.
A haircut can be a fun or a traumatic event. Plan ahead beforehand a wait a bit afterward to see how your new look turns out. If you don’t like it, you can always try something different next time since the great thing about hair is it always grows back.