It seems like I’m always being complimented on my hair. And while I would love to take credit for that, most of the time I have to admit it really has more to do with my stylist then Helen of Troy like genetics. But, whenever I get stopped, be it at the grocery store, Target, or by friends; it always seems that immediately following crediting my stylist, Debbie Ommen of Mane Productions in Lincoln, California, women start telling me how much they dislike their own. Or, if not that, then about how they’ve struggled to find one they do like. While this has given me the opportunity to refer several people, it still makes me wonder. Why do so many women struggle to find Ms. Right?
So, at my most recent visit, I asked Debbie what she thought. “Haircutting is all about optical illusion. It can make you look 15 pounds thinner right away. But you have to find someone who shares your vision.” This is completely true. Before going to Debbie I went through more stylists then I can remember, never returning to the same one.
She also said it was important to pinpoint what was bothering you. “You have to figure out exactly what you are unhappy with. For example, is it the service, the cuts, do you not feel special while you are there?” Deb then told me a story one of her clients told her about a previous stylist who would go out to get the next client coffee mid appointment saying the woman in the next appointment slot always spent a lot of money. While it was nice for the next person, it left the one in the chair feeling like the lesser client.
As for that dreaded bad haircut, the one you’ll spend the next several months growing out, a forthright pre-cut conversation may be the answer. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say the words “She didn’t listen” or “I hate it, but I don’t know how to tell her”. To this Debbie says “Before starting, be upfront with your stylist. If there’s something you know you hate, tell them. Don’t be afraid to say don’t touch my bangs!” A good stylist will respect your feelings, as it is after all your hair.
Debbie also suggested paying attention to whether or not your own scissor queen welcomes pictures of what you want, or better yet offers some of her own. This should be a time when you feel important and heard. Someone who really wants you as a client will pay attention to the details and be willing to sit down and have a comprehensive discussion about your preferences. If they aren’t then you would probably be better off moving on and looking for someone who will.
That special someone is out there for all of us, we just have to be patient, prowling the salons, and above all, open our mouths so she has a chance.