From tipping to texting, what your stylist wished you knew

Not sure how late is too late to show up for a hair appointment or how much should you tip? If you have ever wondered about the answers to those questions or what you should do if you're unhappy with a haircut, you're not alone. Hairstylist and owner of The Upper Hand Salon, Rachel Gower gave us the scoop on what you should really do if you're running late, unsatisfied with your cut, or need to take a phone call.

"As a salon owner, I know there are some questions that are awkward to ask," said Gower.

For twenty years, she's worked to make her customers' experiences positive, even during uncomfortable conversations.

"One of the biggest questions we get all the time is 'How much should I tip?'" said Gower.

She said tipping is often based on service.

"It's usually customary to tip your hair dresser between 15 and 20%. If someone else shampoos your hair, usually about $5 is a good guideline," said Gower. "If you don't like your hair whether it's a cut or color, it's really important to let your hairdresser know right away that you don't like your hair."

A lot of times, customers want to see if they can live with their style for a few days, and that's okay. Just remember, the usual grace period to have your hair fixed is a week. Grower said you should always return to your original stylist and here's what you should know: If you got what you asked for and don't like it, you'll most likely be charged. However, if you didn't get what you wanted originally, you probably won't be charged for future services.

"The most important thing is to ask the receptionist or hair dresser what you can expect," said Gower.

When it comes to running late, communication is key.

"If you're the client, and you're running late, be sure to let the salon know because in many cases they'll be able to see you and modify your services," said Gower. "For example, instead of a haircut and a blow dry, you might just get a haircut."

Whether you'll need to modify your services depends on how late you are and your stylist's schedule. If your stylist is booked every 10 minutes, there may not be a grace period. If you're stylist is booked more liberally, you may have a 10 to 20 minute grace period.
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It's common for a salon to run ten minutes late, but if it's more than that, it's customary for them to thank you in some way for your patience.

Also, you never have to worry about your hair being too dirty when you go to the salon.
"The more important thing to remember is that if you used a lot of hairspray or root concealer, they could stand in the way of your color taking completely," said Gower. "So, definitely try not to use those products before you come in."

Finally, try not to schedule conference calls for when you're in the hair chair.

"So, in salons, it's not ideal to be on your cell phone. It is, however, acceptable to text or type. Just be aware of your hairdresser's time and make sure you're not standing in the way of progress," said Gower. "And always know that your hairdresser really appreciates you being there and appreciates your business."
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