A girl came in today and needed a change. She’d previously had the “Rihanna,” which is shaved on one side, long on top, covering one eye. However, it had grown out and no longer looked awesome. She explained that she wanted it evened out and blended, but wanted to lose as little length as possible. I could tell she was picky, but we seemed to be getting along well.
As I was cutting we were talking and she asked how long I’ve been doing hair. I admitted I was still fairly new at it. Apparently that was a mistake, as suddenly her entire demeanor changed. She tensed up, and I could see the nervousness in her eyes every time I took a snip.
After I had finished, she messed with it a lot, then decided she wanted to go entirely a different direction. Now instead of keeping her length, she wanted a Posh Spice. So I started in on what was pretty much her second haircut, and she started crying. One of my coworkers was walking by as this happened, so she stopped to help. The girl explained that since I was new at this, she was nervous. We both reassured her that even though I’m new, I’m still good at my job. (There are numerous times I’ve had to prove myself – getting licensed, getting that job, etc.) But the girl said her last haircut was bad, and she was a model with a photoshoot in a few days, and “this is just all so stressful!” Again, we reassured her – a haircut is not supposed to be stressful. It’s supposed to make you feel pampered and beautiful. She apologized, wiped her tears, but stayed nervous.
Luckily my coworker kinda took over from here. She would do a good portion, then give me instructions and come back in a few minutes. The problem was, whenever my coworker would leave, the girl would start messing with her hair again, turning her head while I was still trying to cut. She obviously had no respect for me as a stylist, even though I had done nothing wrong except admitting that I was new.
But eventually we got her to a place where she was pleased with her hair. She kept messing with it the entire time, but then said “yeah, that’s good.” I made her promise me, which made her smile, which was a good sign. When I was satisfied that she was satisfied (and not just trying to leave), I took off her cape and walked her out. She apologized again for crying, and assured me that she was ok now. She even left a nice tip, which of course I split with my coworker that had helped me.
The moral is
1. Just because someone is new, doesn’t mean they are bad at their job.
2. Just because one stylist was bad, doesn’t mean they all are.
In fact, I would almost rather be known as the stylist that saves your hair from the ones who ruin it.