Things Your Hairstylist Isn't Telling You

Have I been taking good care of my hair? Are my split ends really that noticeable? Will my stylist be upset with me for coloring my hair at home? These are all questions that we've asked ourselves before heading to the hair salon. A good hairstylist will probably give you an honest answer. And if they are honest and trustworthy, plus know that when you say "Just a trim," you really mean just a trim, it's crucial to hold onto them. 


However, no matter how truthful and candid your hairstylist may seem, there likely is a fair share of secrets that they are keeping from you in order to help their businesses prosper, according to Reader's Digest. From what days to avoid the salon to how they really feel about listening to your life and relationship drama, here's the scoop on all the hidden secrets that your hairstylist isn't telling you.

You should avoid the salon on Saturdays

While Saturday might be your day to relax and run errands, most hair salons consider it their busiest day. In fact, it is a tradition for most barber shops and hair salons to remain open on Saturdays, and in turn, be closed on Sundays and Mondays. With Saturday being the first day of the weekend, many people book an appointment at the salon because they have extra time on their hands to get their hair done. But when everyone has this same idea, hair salons can get overwhelmingly busy.


If you are looking for extra care and attention when you're getting your hair done, you may want to avoid the salon altogether on Saturdays. Your hairstylist may have a jam-packed schedule and may not be able to cater to you in this way during your appointment. Also, Saturdays at the salon can get rather chaotic with the increased foot traffic. If you are someone that hates crowds and noise, you may find a loud and busy hair salon to be overstimulating. 

When looking to schedule your salon visit, you may find better luck earlier in the week, like on a Tuesday or Wednesday when your stylist is just starting out their work week.

The worst thing you can do is be late

Picture this, your hair appointment is at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning and you're running a tad late. So you frantically call your stylist to let them know you're running late and then stop to get a rather large cup of coffee to jolt you awake. We've all been in a situation similar to this, but unfortunately, this may just be the worst thing that you can do to your hairstylist, though they may never tell you so.


Hairstylists often have a packed schedule for the day with very set times and appointments for each of their clients. While it may seem like running a little late is no big deal, it can actually throw off your stylist's entire schedule.

So what is the best course of action if you do find yourself running inevitably late for your appointment? For starters, maybe skip getting your usual Starbucks order until after your appointment. It also doesn't hurt to let your stylist know that you are running late and be truthful about how late you will exactly be. This can allow your stylist to still accommodate you and switch around their schedule as needed. Of course, keep in mind that running extremely late can cause changes or even a cancellation of your appointment. After all, your stylist's time is just as precious as yours.


They prefer if you cancel when you are sick

Canceling your appointment at the last minute isn't great news for your hairstylist, but if you are sick, not only will they understand, but they will appreciate you doing so. This is because it can be rather easy for germs and bacteria to spread in a crowded salon. This will increase the likelihood of your stylist getting sick — and possibly having to miss work — and you risk contaminating the entire salon, its employees, and its patrons. In fact, a study published in the "Journal of Chemical Health & Safety" shows that poor indoor air and environment quality can put clients and stylists at increased risk for respiratory irritation. This, coupled with contaminated salon tools, can further lead to exposure to bacteria, fungi, and other viruses.


While being sick may not be explicitly included in your salon's cancellation policy, for the sake of keeping your stylist and others safe, please cancel your appointment at the earliest if you start to feel feverish. Also, ensure you are taking proper precautions by wearing a face mask to the salon if you do decide that you are well enough to go to your appointment after recently being sick.

Your hair won't turn out exactly like your inspiration pictures

One thing your hairstylist definitely won't tell you is that your hair may not look anything like that cute Pinterest photo that you are trying to replicate. For instance, if you have dark black or brown hair and bring in an inspiration photo of a platinum blonde look, it is very unlikely that your hair will resemble the inspiration picture after just one session, if at all. This could be for many reasons. Perhaps the model in the inspo picture had lighter hair to start with, or they may have a different face shape, skin tone, or hair texture than yours. These factors all play a big role in how your final look turns out. Ideally, you want to look for inspiration pictures that match your natural hair as much as possible.


Another thing to keep in mind when you're browsing social media for hair inspo, is not to get too swept up and end up with multiple pictures and varying ideas of what you want your hair to look like. This can actually confuse both you and your stylist and deter you from getting the look that you actually want. Instead, zone in on a specific style that you think will suit you. Also, don't forget to check out the work that your stylist has done in the past to ensure that they can accomplish the look that you are trying to achieve. 

They can tell when you lie about your hair history

Let's face it, we've all lied to our hairdresser at some point in our lives regarding our hair history. Whether it's being too embarrassed to disclose an at-home dye job or simply leaving out exactly how much damage you've done to your hair, your hairstylist can usually tell when you're lying. While they can't always tell by directly looking at your hair, the truth usually comes out after dyeing a test strand.


Your hairstylist can usually achieve what you're looking for if you're honest about your hair history from the start. In fact, they'll probably appreciate it more as it can save both you and the stylist time and prevent hair breakage or disasters. Oftentimes, you may also not disclose your hair history because several years have passed since you last colored or changed your hair. You may think it doesn't matter, but it's important to always discuss any dyes or hair treatments that you've had with your stylist — no matter how long ago — just to be sure that they won't tamper with your current hair goals.

They want you to put down the cell phone during your appointment

Do you know that customer that is just glued to their phone the entire time during their salon visit? Maybe you've been this customer yourself. Either way, while your hairstylist may not make it known, they are likely really annoyed at this habit of yours. "Not only is your conversation distracting to other customers, but your hairstylist also can't do their job if you're reaching for your phone or moving your head from side to side," says Brittany Molina, owner of Brittany's Spa Salon, in an interview with Woman's Day.


The next time you reach for your phone at the salon, think about how you'd feel if your stylist was constantly taking calls while doing your hair. Of course, this is your time to relax. However, it is also important to be mindful of your stylist and others in the salon that may be distracted by the noise.

So, if you do decide to take a personal call, try to keep it short and sweet. Of course, not scrolling on your phone for the entirety of your service also ensures that you are engaged with what's happening with your hair and allows you to bring up any concerns or questions right away with your stylist.

They prefer if you speak up when you don't like something

You may think it's the polite thing to do to not tell your stylist when you just hate your hair. But the truth is, your hairstylist wants nothing more than for you to be honest and speak up when you don't like something. Sienree Du, an LA-based stylist for Mane Addicts and Richy Kandasamy, told PureWow that the saying "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" really does hold true when it comes to speaking up about your hair. A great way to do this is by scheduling a hair consultation with your stylist before beginning the appointment in order to express your hair concerns and desired outcome.


If you still feel too shy about speaking up, think about it this way, you're paying to get this service done and deserve a result that you're satisfied with. So why not just speak your mind? In fact, the fix may actually be easier than you think and this way, both you and your hairstylist get to leave the appointment feeling satisfied.

Opening your eyes while getting your hair washed is creepy

According to Togninis Premier Colorist David Martin, if you want to really freak out your hairstylist, you should keep your eyes wide open at the hair wash station (via Mamamia). However, we're guessing that you are not trying to creep your hairstylist out. If this is the case, then feel free to close your eyes and relax while they shampoo and condition your hair.


One thing your stylist really wants you to know but isn't telling you is the fact that making weird sounds in the chair or keeping your eyes open during the service is indeed really creepy. As a matter of fact, closing your eyes during your rinse or scalp massage may actually be what's best for you and your stylist as this prevents water or products from getting in your eyes and lets the stylist know that you are relaxed and enjoying the service. If you can, try to also resist the urge to lift your head so that the water doesn't spill everywhere and make a mess. Simply trust your stylist to guide and direct you while getting your hair washed.

They're exhausted from hearing about people's lives all day

Being a hairstylist can be an incredible and rewarding experience. But it can also physically and mentally take a toll. In addition to standing for long periods of time over clients and bending at odd angles to work on different types of hair, hairstylists also spend hours willingly listening to the life stories of clients, their problems, and complaints as a part of their job. In fact, being a therapist is often an expected part of the job. However, your hairstylist is probably not telling you about hairdresser burnout and the mental exhaustion that they face in their job daily.


If your hairdresser seems burnt out, it may be because they're working two jobs at once — their actual one, providing hair services, and then also their job as a go-to therapist for their clients. So the next time you are relaxing and unwinding in the chair, remember to ask your stylist how they are doing and ask about their day. This way the conversation will feel two-sided rather than a therapy session that your stylist has no choice but to listen to.

They have a client card with notes about you on it

Yes, your hairstylist probably does have a client card to keep tabs on you, but before you question their stalker-like ways, know that this is a rather common practice in many salons. In fact, detailed client cards are an excellent way for salons to learn more about their returning customers and organize customer information. So, what do these mystery client cards contain? Well, it can include your profile information including your name, contact information, and past services that you've received. In addition to this, it is also common for stylists to note your personality or preferences to help make it a great salon experience for returning customers.


Don't be surprised if your client card also includes more personal information, like upcoming birthdays or big life events that you have mentioned previously to your stylist. This is simply so that the stylist can refresh their memory about you and make it a point to ask you about your upcoming wedding, for instance. Even information that you may not like to be noted, such as if you are a difficult customer or a bad tipper, can appear on your client card. But don't worry, your stylist has been trained to keep this privileged information to themselves.

Good tippers are often prioritized

Who doesn't love a good tipper? Especially since those in many service industries — like the beauty industry — rely heavily on clients' tips to supplement employee income, a good tipper is always appreciated. It is usually customary to tip between 15% and 20% for professional services, provided you are happy with them.


It is ultimately your choice if you decide to tip and how much you want to leave your stylist. However, don't be surprised if your next appointment isn't prioritized due to a previous bad tip. Because stylists rely so heavily on tips, good tippers are usually their number one priority.

Tipping is your way to show that you loved and enjoyed your service and are rewarding your stylist for it. Think of it as a shout-out to your stylist to appreciate all of their hard work. They are likely to return with perks like squeezing you in for a last-minute appointment or providing you extra care and attention in order to keep you happy and loyal.

Professional products are recommended for a reason, and it's not just to make a sale

During or after your service, it may seem like your hairstylist is really trying to upsell their salon's products. Something they want you to know but won't tell you is that they will only recommend products that they feel will actually help you manage your hair at home and achieve your desired look. In fact, it is not even necessary to go with the exact product that they are recommending. Try asking your stylist for the reason behind why they are recommending certain products. Oftentimes, it's a specific ingredient or formula that your stylist feels will better work for your hair. This way, you can take their suggestions and find products with the same ingredients that may be more suitable for your budget and fit your liking.


Though we may not always be aware of it, there's a reason why hairstylists always use professional salon products. It's because these products typically use gentler cleansers and have a greater concentration of ingredients than drugstore brands. So the next time your stylist recommends a professional product, understand that it is not simply to promote their salon's product, but also for the good of your hair.