The stylist client relationship should be a partnership lead by the goals and desires of the client. It is important to understand that as the consumer, you are purchasing a service from a professional and you have a lot of control over the transaction. It is your responsibility to patronize stylists that respect you, your time, your money, and your hair.
A good stylist
1. Honors a clients appointment time
2. Provides a through consultation that examines the full history of the hair and the clients goals/challenges
3. Listens to the client and uses their advanced knowledge to present solutions
4. Offers options but does not pressure the client into doing something that they are not ready for, do not want, or can’t maintain
5. Uses professional quality products that are designed for the clients texture/density/porosity etc.
6. Charges enough to make a profit but does not price gouge
7. Recommends a hair/scalp care routine and educates client how to maintain their hair at home
8. Completes the full service in a timely manner
9. Recommends a followup schedule for professional care
10. And respects the fact that your hair is your hair and should be a reflection of who you are
If the stylists you’ve been patronizing do not understand that these 10 points encompass their responsibility to you, it’s time to find a new stylist who does.
If you’ve been natural for longer than 2 hours, I’m sure your bathroom sink resembles the natural hair aisle in Target. A few products are there because your natural haired friend told you they were awesome, some are there because a celeb status YouTuber said it was her holy grail product, and some are there because you were standing on the Target aisle with your head spinning and grabbed the product with the prettiest packaging.
STOP! Curls don’t come in a bottle.
That curling custard is not going to give you curls when you have kinks. That thick shea butter shampoo will suck if you have thin, fine hair. That conditioner with the 100% natural juices and berries will not be your savior if you have dry/damaged hair. A product is only as good as the hair it’s being applied to. To be effective a product must be formulated to address what your real natural hair concerns are.
It’s time to get real about what’s really growing out of our scalps. Not the 3C, 4A, 4B madness of hair typing. I’m talking about your length, thickness, porosity, elasticity, hydration level, prior chemical processes, current medicines being taken, hormonal/pregnancy state, and so many other factors.
Care for, treat well, and love your real hair.
PS. If you want to know more about what’s really growing out of your scalp sign up for The Curly Confidence Series
Lets imagine you’ve gone to HairLoveArt to book your HairLove Chat and are now sitting in a styling chair at the salon. Are we speaking the same language during the consultation? The purpose of a consultation is for the stylist and client to get on the same page with time, price, desired outcome, and a future care plan. This can only happen when both parties have a clear understanding of each other.
In the HairLoveArt world texture ie “curl pattern” by definition is how big or small the circumference of a curl, which is influenced by environmental, genetic, and physical factors. It is only one of many factors that your stylist takes into consideration when evaluating your hair.
To understand what is really important to your stylist lets first introduce some basic hair theory.
All hair is composed of the:
Medulla which lies at the center of the hair shaft. It is hollow, and scientists do not yet know what its purpose is in the hair
Cortex which accounts for 75% to 90% of the hair. Its formed from cells that are arranged into coiled strands of rope like fibers. Hydrogen, sulfur, and salt bonds give the cortex its cross-like support. Melanin is imbedded in this layer and this is the layer that is transformed by permanent chemical processing
Cuticle which are scales made up of flattened cells that surround the cortex and cover it from scalp to ends. They are between 7 to 11 layers deep in pigmented hair and up to 24 layers deep in non-pigmented (grey or white) hair hence grey hair resistance to chemical or heat processing.
Important qualities of the hair:
Texture: the way the hair appears and how it feels i.e. curly, kinky, wavy, rough, silky, etc.
- Curl Pattern: the circumference of a curl, kink, or wave
Diameter: the width of the hair shaft and is either classified as fine, medium, or coarse. Fine hair tends to have more layers of cuticle and less cortex which makes it difficult to chemically process. Many naturals tend to have finer hair which is mistaken for being coarse and have experienced improper chemical/heat/styling techniques leading to damage
Porosity: The hair’s ability to absorb moisture as determined by the condition of the cuticle. Resistant hair does not grab moisture resulting in overly dry hair, moisture treatments are a good idea. Porous hair absorbs moisture easily but also looses moisture easily. The cuticle is raised from the cortex so essentially the hair is exposed and easily damaged, protein treatments are a great idea.
- Hydration Level: the current level of moisture within the hair strand
Elasticity: the hair’s ability to stretch and return to its original length without breaking. Porous hair has less elasticity than normal hair
Density: the number of hairs per square inch on the scalp. Hair is either thin, medium, or thick density
Appearance: If the cuticle is in a normal position the hair reflects light, when the cuticle is raised it absorbs light and looks dull. Kinks, coils, and curls absorb more light than wavy and straight hair but if healthy should have a sheen or lustre.
We do not use any hair typing system other than the one above. A typical 3C on the Andre Walker system could have curly/silky/medium/resistant/elastic/thick/short/shiny 3C hair or curly/rough/coarse/porous/thin/long/dull 3C hair? The difference is light years away from each other when it comes to product choices, styling techniques, and length of time/price of service because the two “hair types” require completely different standards of care. Now that we understand each other, lets chat
See HERE and HERE to peep prior frequently asked questions posts. Go HERE to sign up for the Love Notes Newsletter to receive Pt. 2 directly in your inbox tomorrow.
In many aspects of our daily lives, our first instinct is to ask “how much”?
Often a prospective client will see a style on my website and ask me “how much” for that particular style. I respond with “why don’t you come in for a consultation where we will evaluate your hair”. Sometimes that goes great, sometimes I get crickets, and sometimes I get a “thanks” followed by an immediate hang up.
There are also times when I come across rants about a “natural hair tax” on twitter or in someones blog comments. I smirk and keep it moving.
The proper question is not “How much does that style cost?”, it is
“Where is my hair now, where do I want it to be and how can (insert stylist name here) assist me?”
We care for, cater to, and create art with the hair that grows from your scalp, regardless of texture.
We are texture obsessed artists committed to shattering the Curly + Natural Hair community’s low expectations of hair stylists with technical excellence, a hustle flow work ethic and a major dose of business acumen.
We believe that the stylist/client relationship is a partnership lead by the goals and desires of the client.
We cut through massive amounts of Curly + Natural Hair e-information with expert advice tailored to your individual texture, density, porosity, lifestyle, and styling comfort level.
We develop your curly confidence and expand the boundaries of Curly+ Natural Hair through precision cutting, custom color, and bespoke styling.
We love your Curly + Natural Hair (and Straight, Wavy, and Relaxed Hair Too!) and want to inspire you to create a love/love relationship with it.