How do YOU talk to your stylist?

Ever regretted a hair cut so much because your stylist didn’t understand what you wanted?…. Well here are some tips for getting exactly what you want when you’re in the chair:

Keep it short. Not your hair—your pitch! “The best consultations take 30 seconds,” she says. “The more you talk about it, the more muddled it gets. A good stylist only needs a few minutes to get a good sense of you, your style, and your wants.”

Show and tell. Whitmire says bringing a picture is a great way to get your ideas across, but don’t expect an exact replica. “It’s great when clients bring in photos because it gives me an idea of the kind of shape and styling they’re looking for,” she says. “But bear in mind that you’ll never get exactly what’s on the page. It’s our job to customize that picture for you.

Problem Solving “Don’t worry about speaking in cosmetology jargon. Speak in general broader terms, starting with how you want to change your length,” says Stacey. Try to relate your cut to a problem-solving experience. For example: “My hair feels heavy on this side” translates to a need for more layers, while “It takes too long to dry!” might tell her to cut some length and thin it out.

Be open minded. They’re trained for a reason! Unless there’s a major miscommunication, sit back and relax in the chair. Know that your stylist is schooled in making a cut (or color!) work for your skin, shape, and age based on the parameters you give them. “If you’re doubting their competence to the point where you can’t relax, consider switching stylists,” says Stacey.

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