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Visiting a new hair salon causes a special kind of excitement but some anxiety as well. Will the service be good? Will you be satisfied with the haircut or treatment results? Or will your experience join dozens of other horror stories about hair salon failures? To avoid the latter outcome you need to pick a top-grade salon with a stylist who can be trusted.
This is how you do it:
How to Choose the Best Hair Salon in 3 Steps
Research the salon online
Every worthy business today must have its own website or at least accounts on social media. Not having an online presence at all is a red flag that should turn you away immediately. Even if the salon is new and has yet to gain any reviews on popular online consumer forums, it should have some kind of digital identity to refer those reviews to.
When evaluating a salon by assessing its online presence, you should focus on two things. The most important is customer reviews and ratings based on them. However, you can disregard those if there are only a handful of reviews available. Another important factor is the page of the salon itself. Whether it’s a website (preferably) or a social media account, it should feature pictures of the salon interior and a portfolio of the stylists’ works.
Evaluate the salon in person
The next step of your evaluation should be visiting the salon personally so you can see how true those pictures are. It’s quite reasonable that clients decide how classy a salon is by judging its furniture. While overall interior design is a matter of the owner’s personal preferences, the furniture in a professional salon must be professional as well. Therefore, it has to come from top brands, which don’t have many fancy designs as such items are made for comfort and efficiency of use.
The ability to create a stylish interior around these pieces can be proof of a good salon in itself. At the least, it proves that the owner invested in the services of a talented interior designer.
Other important factors to consider during your direct exploration of the place are its cleanliness and equipment used by the hairstylists working there. If the place is dirty, turn away immediately as this is a sure sign that the people working here are severely lacking in professionalism. Never forget that the sanitary requirements for such places are very high. A beauty salon might not need to be as sanitary as a hospital room, but it should be close.
As to the quality of the equipment, assess how battered it is. Masters working in a good salon should have top-quality gear, which should be replaced as soon as it’s past its peak. If it’s not, you should wonder why exactly. Does the salon not have enough clients to provide stylists with top-quality tools?
Assess the stylist’s experience during a consultation
Now that you’ve ascertained that the salon itself can provide you with quality service and comfort, you should focus on the stylist you will entrust your hair to. Talk to them personally and directly ask for their portfolio and certifications.
If you are looking for some specialized service, like bleaching or straightening, you need to find out what kind of experience the stylist has. You should also ask whether they received any specialized training for these specific treatments.
Don’t forget to ask about the materials the stylist will use during the treatment. You should research those beforehand so you know which products are considered the best for what purpose. Find out what kind of scissors they’re using too. There are plenty of black hair scissors on the market, but you want to make sure the pair the stylist is using are high quality scissors. If the stylist is using something else, ask them more detailed questions about the brand they offer you.
Note that you should consider booking the consultation as another opportunity to evaluate both the salon and the stylist. Are you satisfied with the customer service provided? Is the stylist open and friendly during your consultation?
If you’ve done all this and both the salon and stylist checked out as reliable, but you still ended up with a hairstyle that makes you cringe, speak out! Depending on what exactly the cause of the issue is, you might be able to argue a refund or demand a fix to your new but unsatisfying haircut.