Tag Archives: communication. skill

How important is the hair client consultation?


It is my goal to create a platform that over time will become a place to share thoughts review hair colour and products.

The Consultation your time to shine:

I’ve been a fully trained stylist for over 20 years have been fortunate enough to have experienced many aspects of the hairdressing Industry.
In the many years working i have been working with clients. I like to think that nothing shocks or surprises me. Many have shared with me every issue that a client can bring to the chair.

I’ve seen young women come in with orange roots and white ends. I’ve seen red roots and black ends. I’ve seen hair looking like a traffic light from violet to blue, colors that usually are reserved for flowers.When I see these mistakes colour failures in some case hair nightmares one cannot help but feel oh so sorry  for the client to which these hair are attached.

Normally when the color mistakes are so apparent the truth is impossible to ignore the poor client is so embarrassed upset and apologetic that one  really wants to help and fix this problem if at all possible.

The client usually admits that it was a money issue a crazy moment or a few drinks with that got out of hand with a friend it seemed like a good idea at the time! found an old box under the vanity and thought it would be a great time at 3 in the morning to “streak” their hair. I don’t have any issues helping these clients for me the challenge is correcting it the reward is success a happy client she made an honest mistake at home and now seeks professional help a humbling experience in it’s self. Usually they have learned from the mistake  after all we all make mistakes first time one feels sorry for them repeat offenders well they are on their own, most however are more than willing to go through the steps to fix the situation.

Here is an example of a normal client consultation:

A client is looking for some sort of chemical service, not always a major change; let’s say going lighter.  We will take a close look at the hair during the consultation and figure out what we need to do to get as close to the desired result without damaging the hair.  It is at this time when we’ll ask the client their past history.  whilst at the same time looking and feeling for indications of damage, If we see any sort of banding, we know some sort chemical affected the hair.

It’s a pretty simple fact, hair grows approximately 1/2 inch a month.  If there is a any sort of line of demarcation, we know there was something “done” to the hair,  and we can tell when it happened by how far it is away from the scalp.  When we ask the client why this band exists, they can’t give a reason.  When we’d tell them that something had to be put in their hair to create this band they will not admit to anything.  To be fair with so many over the counter products these days misleading the consumer it is possible that they were unaware the product used would cause this issue.  In some cases one would repeatedly ask the question and they’ll repeatedly plead their innocence/ignorance. Stale mate helps no one!

Here’s some information everyone needs to know.

Anything from a box color to a highlighting shampoo that causes any visible difference in your hair color has permanently altered the hair structure. Sun-In or anything like that, especially highlighting shampoos and conditioners have any variety of alkaline chemicals that diffuse your natural pigment.  Beware of these products since they may contain sodium hydroxide which is relaxer. Any color from a box that is made from 2 or more components that are mixed together have some sort of peroxide component.  Peroxide oxidizes your natural pigment, so if there is any alkaline in the formula, you will get lift. Many box colors say that they last 24 shampoos simply put if your color is changed by a box and if you grow out roots, it is not temporary the hair structure has been permanently affected. When hair is colored or receives any chemical service it is permanently affected till it is is cut off.

You may have correction to re colour blonde hair with brown pigment, it may be a perfect colour match  but the hair still has any inherent damage caused by the initial service in this case going blonde. As a client try and be as open as possible the more history the better  their is no advantage in trying to hide any chemical service that you have introduced into their hair.   there is no reason to hide any details no matter what the box says informed decisions are easier to make with all the information at  hand and every thing must be taken into consideration.  When we ask you questions about what has happened to your hair for the past year or so, we need to know everything so we can make the right decisions for your services.

Next time you come in to get any chemical service done be completely honest with your colorist or  as a stylist you are doing a consultation make sure you ask all the right question. We can read the history of your hair and there is no need for deception.  After all, we have your best interests in mind.  As they say; the truth will set you free. a lie may break your hair!

Our goal is to work with clients to deal with the issue at hand offering the best service possible supported with education knowledge and an honest understanding of what is possible given any situation and history.

Mike B2MR


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The hair salon growing your business. client retention.


Regular postings of fresh new topic’s


As Salon owner’s and Manager Stylist’s.

We all have one major things in Common. Do you know what that is ? We all work in the service Industry. It is our job to offer the highest standards of. Service and Consultation.

This is a team effort an experience that starts as the client walks through the door and is greeted by receptionist and salon assistance. As stylists to offer the best advise supported by knowledge and skill.

On going training product knowledge updates are all key factors to staying current and on the cutting edge of our industry.


It is a know fact. That 50% of clients that visit a salon for the first time do not return! Why is this? What is going wrong? We all spend so much time money and energy trying to get new business. We forget about the existing business. We forget to live in the now! Striving and Trying to build up a strong clientele. But constantly driven to look for new clients new ways to attract clients.

We need to take an honest look at what is going wrong. This has to be done both as. A Salon as a team and as an individual.



Clients leave for many reason’s. Poor service. Bad job. Personality issues. Pricing. Oh and a friend telling them about the new wonder salon down the road. That being everything yours is not!


In all of the above instances the only one person who cannot be blamed is. The client. It is our job to cherish care and build up a trusting honest relationship. One that comes for giving the ultimate service.

Change improvements. Salon service. Image. Increased business all possible but it does take. Hard work, Humility, Honesty and caring.



Here is a little personal reflection. But it get’s a point home.


I recently lost my dear life friend my dog Zip. Stay with me there is a point to this! He was almost 10 years old. 3 years ago we moved to the Uk from Canada leaving my clients and hair business behind.


I have stayed in touch with many of my clients will still chat stay connected. It’s easy! How? With so many Media tools available to us. Well I learned a huge lesson in Zip’s passing sad as it was. How loved and how many clients remembered him. The salon. The service. So many postings with messages from people who’s hair I have not done for three years. But they still care they still remember the time we spent together.  They left message s reflecting on this time spent. Why? Because they wanted to. Because they cared. Because we had built up relationships still strong today.



Service Consultation the key.

We get so wrapped up in booking. Being busy. Fitting in as many clients as possible. That we forget that the person that client in the chair is the most important thing. Think less about the money more about the service for one takes care of the other.

Look after that client give the most attentive service make them feel special she will tell friend and so it builds.

Easy just repeat the same system over and over treat every client the same every time as if it were a first visit and they are really special. Fool proof!

Service .Consultation. Communication. Professional product advise. note not sales advise educate the product it will sell it self.


Do you take the time to really listen and give honest advise?

Would you suggest a different look ? If what was being requested would not look good?

Would you suggest not doing a chemical process if you thought condition to poor?

Would you stay late working with a client until happy?

Have boundaries a 15 min rule for lateness no exception ! why it’s easy the knock on effect over the day creates you running late others being effected.

You see both clients and us as stylist have to be accountable for our actions. Make a decision live with the consequences. Mutual respect. Open lines of communication.

Give sound solid honest advise even if it’s not what the clients wants to hear. Do not take on work that is not represent your own high standards and explain why?

More to follow on this topic but enough to digest for now.

For further places to research on going help and advise some very useful links below online support program for you your salon and team.

Some useful tools.






As always  hope this is useful and is useful food for thought and personal growth.Mike B2MR

Comments Off on The hair salon growing your business. client retention.

Posted by on July 8, 2011 in Ammonia free natural hair colour, Avantgarde hair, Beauty hair salon, Beauty hair style, Beauty tips, Blonde, Blonde highlights, Bridal hair, Bridal updo looks, brunette to Blonde, chemical reactions, Classic Chinion. The laws of colour, Colour correction, colour wheel laws of colour, colouring Grey hair, corrective colour chart, corrective hair colour charts, Creative Hair cuts, Foaming hair colour, freelance Mobile hair stylists, French Pleat, Full head hair bleach and tone, grey hair issues, Hair and style, hair chemistry, Hair Colour, hair colour education, Hair colour techniques, hair colour trends, hair colouring lift deposit, Hair Cuts, Hair cutting, hair cutting style, Hair cutting technique, hair cutting techniques, HAIR DRESSING INDUSTRY, TIPS TRICKS, THOUGHTS,, hair dressing training, Hair dressing training mentoring, Hair lift and deposit, Hair salon chair rental, Hair salon consultation, Hair salon service sales., Hair salon service's, Hair structure and Ph chart, Hair style, Hair style crative colour techniques, Hair stylist consultation, Hair Stylist standards, hair up/do formal, Hairdressing, hairdressing business, Hairdressing colour style trends, hairdressing education, hairstyle, home hair colour, Keratin hair relaxer, Lifting Dark hair with High lift colour, Lifting natural dark and warm hair shades, Metallic salts, Multi tonal low lights, Natural Blonde. want it!, natural level 7 to 9 blonde, Ombre hair colour, Razor cut is cutting edge, REDS HOT AND COLD, Solid hair colour going lighter, That special Day make it so!, The colour wheel, The Hair Salon, up do'd, Wedding day hair


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standards of hair stylist Training.


A place to share thoughts post comments and idea’s on matters relating to hair colouring skill and techniques and anything industry related.

Below I have cut and pasted a blog posted by a student hairdresser it’s colour correction posting . I would like to review it with you in sections. For it highlights some real issues relating to teaching standards and advise given to students and trainees.

Below is the Article as posted :

A lady came in today with some seriously lightened hair. She had about an inch of regrowth, and her hair was about a natural 6 (on a 1-10 scale). Her lightened hair was this color Straw off the charts yellow tinged.

She wanted lowlights to ease the transition while she grows her hair out (as she’s not going to continue to lighten her regrowth).

I started from ear level and weaved horizontal highlights all the way up her head, right up to the top, and it looked great when it was done – but boy oh boy was I off in my original color formula!

Of course, the instructors look over your formulas on paper before you do anything, so it worked out in the end. Here’s what I thought would be best:

1/2 8N (8 natural, in our color line) + 1/2 8.01 (8 Soft Ash in our line) 10 volume developer.

The instructors saw that and said that it would turn her hair green! I thought ash was what you use to counteract yellow, but apparently it’s more for reddish colours. I need to learn my color wheel better.

Quite the colour job and formula : a recipe for green hair?

So my first question is why is someone with no clear understanding of a colour wheel having consultation coming up with a half cocked formula?  

The first formula 8N lies in a blue violet camp so to add ash is adding more blue !

So what the instructors decided on was:

3/4 5N (5 natural) + 1/4 5.3 (5 Gold) 10 volume.

This formula is totally not what I would have thought of. Especially since the client didn’t like how yellow her hair was, I would have thought putting any kind of gold color in would be aweful! And a 5? Surely they’re mad! But of course I kept my mouth shut and trusted they knew what they were doing. (And I do trust them, they’re quite good)

My thoughts:

The instructor formulation adding that amount of 5G to 5N is fear factor it does nothing to the formulation. The 5N being a natural level 5 would mask out the 5G completely when hair is totally over processed why would you lift it more 10 Volume peroxide?

 This would make it more porous damaging it more? This is why the standards being taught are so poor no care attention to detail they should be working with the student through consultation into formulation giving sound advise!

Back with our student:

So after all the weaving, which took forever because I am so slow, we went to wash out the foils and I started freaking out a bit. (On the inside! The outside is always all smiles and “Hmm, everything is exactly how I expected. No surprises here! La-dee-da”)

It looked like halloween colours! Dark streaks of level 5 brown, light yellow streaks of her original hair! Oh no! Where my weaves too chunky? Where the instructors wrong about the color formula?

I hoped it just looked halloween-y because it was wet and brought her back to my station, and started drying her hair. As it dried the worries faded, because it looked surprisingly good. The low lights weren’t actually big thick streaks, they were fairly natural looking, mild low lights. It turned out Ok! I was so surprised by the result, I would not have put a level 5 on her, or used anything yellow-based. But if I had put a level 8 on her it would have been invisible, judging by how light the level 5 looked. Just goes to show that the porosity and condition of the hair plays a huge role in coloring it.

My thoughts.

The level 5N used with a 10 volume formulation did not give anything like target colour also over processing the hair more will cause fading this colour will not last. This was a poorly done job over seen by a very poorly trained or none caring teaching professional.

My closing Thoughts:

Students should be taught  and have a full understanding of the colour wheel basic laws of colour prior to doing consultations others wise how can they possible come up with  a correct formulation?

they also need to fully understand lift and deposit the effects of different levels of peroxide and the difference between permanent semi permanent Demi permanent and colour balancing all very basic stuff but key to understanding colour.

In so many cases a little basic knowledge is given prior to being let loose into the practical application of our trade our skill. This can be very dangerous it makes for stylist who muddle through thinking they are skilled and even convince them selves they know everything this is  dangerous this is ‘ Ego’

We as educators owe it to student to deliver the highest standard to education as is possible students have the obligation to look listen learn and strive to reach the highest standard of training.

Education is a very important part of being a stylist. It is one of the most important aspect of giving back and sharing but should be done by those with knowledge skill and passion .

To be a great hairdresser requires continued education and up dating of skills and product knowledge, industry awareness is key to staying up with change  keeping you in touch and relevant. Consistently  getting education will not only keep your skills and knowledge up to date  but your clients will appreciate that you invest both time and money in you ability.

Clients do notice when we try out new techniques be it cutting or colouring . What we have to remember is that we are being watched and criticized, even if its done in silence. As stylists and trainee as hairdresser keep up to date on the latest trends, and hairstyles, colours, techniques will keep you at the top of your game.



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Chat with salon owner.Stylist manager educator

Welcome to BACK2MYROOTS B2MR: regular postings of fresh new topic’s Education, Sharing,

I had an interesting week last week so i thought i would share some of a discussion with you. It is quite rare to find a salon manager who will take the time to sit and chat with you much less be very honest and open.

Last week I had the pleasure of meeting up with Marcus [at this point no salon name]  I did not no how he would receive me. He had no idea as it turned out what i wanted. Did I want to sell him something every business owner and managers night mare back door sales.What did I want! Time an informal chat maybe some honesty .

I got all this and more. What an interesting open honest human being it has so restored my faith in being able to go and talk openly with fellow stylist about hair our industry. Career choice mistakes made lessons learned all a very open and sharing manner


For myself having had part of my career as a platform artist educator artistic team member it was interesting to re live this with some else. For when we are doing this the hype the stage the being center of attention the celebrity status or so we think can take over. Or is it just Ego? We both agreed that at the time we felt the respective company needed us more than us them. The reality of this of course is quite the opposite. There will always be some one new dying to do the  major companies bidding for them that chance at real success. But it’s only as we get older hopefully wiser we can really judge for our self how to measure true success.

For me I can now measure it in response to articles and topic’s I post. Feeling good about giving back sharing my experience connecting with others trying to make a difference and raise standards.

Marcus runs the salon in quite a unique way they train to NVQ level both in house and from out side salons.They also run training assessor courses. On top of this they do specific classes for stylists to up grade skills.This is done on certain days and Marcus on the other days has is own  clients to attend to.

Multitasking offering every aspect of our industry.

Sharing , thoughts idea's

My own feelings are. That all this salon offers is very comprehensive but i still think that more needs to be done in the promotion of Service Consultation and looking after clients. This is not a reflection on the courses this salon or others offer be it education or service. But as an added topic worthy of time discussion and one bringing to the attention of all stylist.

Whilst having lunch with friends yesterday. The topic moved to hair colour, cuts a normal direction conversation can go when women know your a stylist. I steered it back to asking them about service and consultation every single one said same thing no service when it came to consultation!

In the door and to the basin. If your a returning client no chance of a pre wash consultation why is this?

Remember we lose clients through poor service lack of attention to detail make that visit a special experience for your clients.

Academies, colleges. you have the platform to introduce the importance of service and consultation throughout any training period.

It is the job of all of us to improve the professional  standards and image of our industry it starts in your  Salon the experience you offer.   Mike B2MR


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Taking on corrective colour

Colour Correction cause concerns Options:

A huge topic how do you define or categorise what is classed as corrective colour?

Causes client has Indulged in a cocktail colour trying to get that of home salon look on the cheap!

Sadly a poorly done colour service done by an unskilled hairdresser.

A mixture of both of the above some salon visits some home colour therapy!

What must we consider when Taking on a Corrective colour  challenge?

The key to successful colour correction are as follows:

Firstly as a client consumer if you find your self in this dire situation i really think it’s time to take stock seek out professional advise from someone who know what they are doing.

Please don’t juts buy another box of instant over the counter wonderful fix!

If a poorly done Job by a hairdresser, I would suggest refund go else where would not trust them to

put right a wrong!

As a Stylist If you don’t feel comfortable don’t have the skills to do corrective work be big enough to admit it! drop the ego get the skill.

The Key to successful Correction is communication and honesty by all concerned. History,concerns  Reservations, Expectations, should all be discussed.

The Consultation

This must be a honest conversation both parties must decide on goal and what is realistically be achieved! {it is worth noting that correction can take more than one visit}

Commitment to work together for how ever long this journey might take.

During the consultation a stylist must use all tools available to them. Ask as many questions as possible thus getting  a full history of events running up to this point!

Touch feel the hair visual look study.{ look for banding. fading. build up. breakage.porosity.}

Do a strand test  healthy hair floats over processed hair sinks: hair that sinks will not hold colour! step one is to re build that moisture level

How ever challenging the correction is and how ever good you are and we all like a challenge and to show off! { oh yes it’s correction so big earner!}

What is classed as corrective. Badly done Colour, Wrong Colour or shade.Poor coverage issues. Over Deposit. Damage by over process long term abuse.

Stylist consider this

If at the end of the day you don’t get a good feeling about the client commitment or if it’s not going to be a good advert for your skill why take it on? EGO!

Think about it really damaged over processed hair fading falling apart as soon as you agree to attempt to correct this you are saying i take on responsibility for this and all that has been done in the past!

A huge risk remember if it’s not going to be a good advert for you then it can cause damage to your reputation. Hard as it is their is nothing wrong with saying I’m sorry this is just to damaged to work with at this time recommend products see if their is commitment to work with you!

If the motivator is driven by the fee you should not be doing it!

You should be thinking long term this could be a long term relationship with a client who will trust you for ever so be honest look at it as an investment! educate them.

The Next Step:

So we have decided that we can and want to proceed:

Corrective Colour will usually be one or a combination of the following:

*Wrong level: the hair is to dark or too light.

*Wrong Tone: the hair is to warm {Orange} to cool {ash}

*Uneven colour: Dark ends. lines of demarcation. light { hot} regrowth.

* Insufficient or poor Grey coverage.

* Colour that wont holds on ends, and or fades very quickly.

The key to understanding  corrective colour is the understanding of what pigment is missing from the hair what needs to be replaced or removed?

Hair colour is about balance harmony ask your self do i want utilize or neutralize the shade exposed? the chart below shows the relationship of tone and corrective tone: remember that perfect balance of our primary colours Red, yellow, blue.

So as an example lets look on the chart at undertone orange {orange as we know is made up of red and yellow} So to bring balance to a natural level 7 we would add a corrective Blue Tone! cool ha.

You must learn to trust these charts to get the correct results:

It would not be possible to give an example of a corrective case they are all different and way to many

possibilities things to watch out for.

Picture to the above is corrective from the picture above:

Colour added but existing Blonde uterlized. colours added all Demi formulation for deposit no lift


Colour may not be removed evenly over the entire head due mainly to varying porosity and build up always work from dark to light! repeat on dark areas before moving on to lighter area. be patient always protect virgin hair – regrowth.

Lifting the cuticle causes damage to the hair shaft rule as little chemistry as possible: condition get that hair Ph back to 5.5!

Test the hair:

Do not remove colour if:

* hair is extremely porous. or slimy strentchy when wet? sort of cotton wool Like!

*Skin is broken and or sensitive.

*do a stand test do a skin test be safe.

Repeat performance:

In a perfect world we could say this is a one off service! but be prepared for follow up fine tuning to get the perfect results.

Decolourizer or Bleach  one of the key tools needed for corrective service when mixed with the correct volume of Hydrogen peroxide on the market now many really good colour removers.


Follow-up this involves recommending the correct products to maintain the colour and hair condition it’s your prescription for success!

Book a follow up appointment within two weeks so colour retention can be checked and adjusted if necessary!

Remember it’s a journey an adventure with the right tools knowledge and education correction can be fun!    { if you don’t have the skills and confidence seek help get the knowledge}

1 Comment

Posted by on May 24, 2010 in Hair Colour


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