July 19, 2014 10:45:51 PM
Right after hello, the first thing I ask of all new salon guests is to indulge me in a few basic questions to help me get better acquainted with their hair. The significance of the consultation may seem, well, insignificant to some, but never to me. So, try these questions with your hairstylist before the shears are even opened.
Question 1: Who is my hair crush of the moment? Hairstylists love it when you bring us pictures for inspiration. It provides a sense of the overall aesthetic that appeals to you: trendy or classic, elegant or casual, sleek or romantic. So, don't be bashful, and flip through the latest fashion magazines to find what you covet most.
Question 2: Am I high maintenance, low maintenance or no maintenance? If your morning routine already resembles a scene from the movie "Mission Impossible," you don't need a style that requires four products, two styling tools and 45 minutes. On the other hand, if you relish the time spent with your mirror, why not try those Gisele-inspired waves or fringe bangs you can fuss over? Just make sure your stylist knows your time and maintenance preferences, and ask for a styling walk-through.
Question 3: Can I afford a long-term relationship with this hairstyle? As a rule, the shorter, choppier cuts need frequent salon upkeep while one-length or long layered cuts can go longer between appointments. It's the same with hair color. Consider painted-on Ombre highlights for fewer touchups, and remember to talk about your budget openly with your colorist. That three-hour, five-step color process adds up like the meter on a NYC taxi.
Question 4: What are my hair limitations? Here is where you vent. Cowlicks, wave patterns, thin bangs, dry, brittle -- if it bothers you, it should be on your list. Your hairstylist can better understand what makes you unhappy and will have suggestions for finding a style that plays up your strengths. Stylists should also be forthcoming. Some hair textures and conditions simply will not accommodate certain styles. Wouldn't you rather know that up front?
Question 5: What was my best and worst hairstyle ever? We all have had at least one jaw-dropping, all-eyes-on-me gorgeous hairstyle. Perhaps it was the one that brought the most compliments. Maybe it just made you feel sensational. And most of us have not escaped at least one bad one that sent us crying to the privacy of the bathroom. Talk about these good and bad moments with the person who might either boost or wreck your self-esteem.
Armed with these questions and a stylist who will listen, the next time you visit your salon might result in your best hairstyle ever. I certainly hope so!
Former Columbus resident David Creel owns Beautiful With David salon in Jackson and has 20 years experience in the beauty industry. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.