What’s the best kept secret in the salon?

There’s a service that most salons offer that you may not know about. It’s the best way to ensure a successful salon visit, to know what to expect, and to get free advice
from a hairstylist.

It’s the professional consultation.

Yes, you probably did know that they exist, but didn’t know that in most salons they are free, and are the best way to connect with a professional and get an honest, unbiased opinion.

You may have often wondered what you’d look like with red hair, bangs, a short haircut, or whether the hairstyle you wore back in college is ready to make a comeback on your head. Short of trying on wigs or taking a big risk, it’s hard to know unless you had a professional opinion. That’s where a professional consultation comes in, and it’s really the most
underused, underappreciated yet most valuable salon service you can have.

As a 30-year hairstylist and makeup artist, I have an opinion and a possible history with any combination of hair, eye, and skin color. I’m giving people on the street makeovers in my mind a lot of the time. People ask hairstylists all the time, “What would you do with my hair?” but sometimes the situation I’m in doesn’t lend itself to an answer very easily. Midway through dinner, over romaine lettuce in the produce aisle, or in the waiting room at the dentist — we’re not in ‘hair mode’, and the conversation isn’t going in a hair direction.

But, sit in my chair where I’m ready for questions with my hair color swatches or my iPad portfolio, and I can be a veritable fountain of ideas. Being surrounded by hairstylists, happy clients, my tools and my inspiration really does make a difference. Add in a client who has brought me photos of the best hairstyle she ever had or the worst, and a great conversation about what she wants, my input on what is possible, and some plans for the hair journey to follow, and the information can be priceless.

Some people just forge ahead, take a leap of faith, or even better, take a recommendation from a friend. But for those people who just aren’t sure what they should do, or need a professional to make suggestions, an in-salon consultation is the best way to ask questions about your hair. It’s better than asking over drinks at the club or at a backyard barbecue.

Some stylists charge for an in-depth consultation and rebate it back into your first visit. They are, after all, taking time to give you valuable information. You can return to that chair or take the information elsewhere, either way the advice can be important to your future hairstyle, haircut, or hair color success.

In addition, if you are happy with your hairstylist but are ready to make a change, consider making a consultation appointment with your regular stylist so you can spend extra time reviewing your current look and coming up with a new plan for a new look. You’ll need to know what will look good with your skin tone, eye color, and face shape, and what the maintenance cost and time will be like. It’s like having a salon ‘first date’ all over again.

The consultation. Try one today!

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