Whether you and your current hairdresser or beautician have parted ways, or you’re looking for a change and want the help of a specialist skill or service, it can be overwhelming to know how to find a new practitioner. After all, we put a lot of trust into our hairdressers and beauticians and it can cause a lot of unease when having to start afresh. Here, we look at the 4 ways you can find a new stylist, hairdresser, or beautician you can trust so you can go into that first appointment with ease.

Consider what is important to you

When looking for a new salon, consider what it is you’re looking for. Our own personal style, tastes, values and budgets will influence the kind of salon we want to go to – whether for a one-off service or to build a long term relationship. 

Although not exhaustive, these pointers can help you to understand what is important to you when engaging with a salon:

  • Is there a specialism that is important to you- do they have such specialist services?
  • If sustainability is important, are they a B Corp registered company or stipulate their sustainability practices on their website?
  • The salon experience: What kind of experience do you want from your appointment? Do you want a full hair and beauty service when you go in? Is the selection of magazines/books they have on offer important? How about the selection of drinks? 

Consider their specialisms

If it is specialism you’re looking for, be it colour, colouring techniques, cuts, styles, nail art, nail treatments, body treatments, or facials, look to the team at the salon, do they have a bio that talks about their training, interests or favourite styles? Is the salon award winning? If so, what were the awards for, who from the salon won the award, and how long ago was it? 

If the information you’re seeking isn’t immediately available, don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and speak to the receptionist. Stipulate the specialism you’re looking for and make enquiries as to whether the team there has the expertise and qualifications to help you execute it. 

Check out their reviews

It is always helpful to check out the reviews of the salons you’ve narrowed down. Getting first-hand customer experience is invaluable in giving you confidence that you’re putting your trust in the right salon and person. 

There are several places you can find reviews: Google, the salon website page, Facebook and Yell. However, there are some important things to keep in mind with reviews; the reviews found on any company page are ones they have selected and chose to share, so they are likely to be quite biased. Additionally, Google is another mechanism for easily, quickly and relatively anonymously leaving a review; Google has been subject to a number of fake reviews, both orchestrated by companies themselves trying to get more favourable reviews, and others from disgruntled former employees. It is still worth a look but take these with a pinch of salt. 

Your most reliable source for honest reviews is Facebook, which identifies who leaves the review (and you can tell fake profiles vs. real ones and therefore whether it is a genuine review or not) and the reviews may include imagery and extensive feedback of clients’ experiences.

Additionally, you could also search for the salon using specific hashtags to get customers’ real photos and opinions of their experience. Instagram, in particular, is not only a helpful tool in gauging customer experience but the quality of the work the salon delivers. 

Prepare for your consultation

Particularly in hairdressing, you should be offered a consultation with the service provider; this is your opportunity to see if there is a good fit between the two of you.

Your consultation is not only an opportunity to understand the skills and qualifications of your hairdresser/beautician and their confidence of delivering the treatment – airing any concerns or questions with you from the outset, but it’s also a good opportunity to gauge how personable they are; you want those hours to be enjoyable each time you go in, never something you dread so if the conversation flows well and easy, that’s always a bonus. 

In preparing for your consultation, it’s a good opportunity to go armed with any questions you have, including imagery to illustrate the kind of style/look you’re hoping to achieve. Photos are an invaluable tool for your hairdresser which can help make clear expectations from the outset. They should understand how this can be applied, considering your natural colour, face shape and skin tone and concerns about the end result should be discussed, with a mutually agreed path forward. 

The consultation provides an opportunity too for you to walk away. If you’re not feeling comfortable or you’re unsettled by the conversation or surroundings, you can choose not to move forward with an appointment. 

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