When you make an appointment at the salon, you most likely already have an idea of, and/or pictures of the style you want. It could be something you saw on that random cute girl with the cute doo at the store, or a cut your current fave celebrity just got, or maybe it’s just your “trim” you’re due for. And then that moment when your stylist asks you once he or she is done styling, “What do you think?”, and you pretty much hate it and almost want to cry. So how do you tell the truth?

Everyone has had a cut that wasn’t what they had envisioned before their stylist decided to do their own thing with your hair, but walking out and never coming back is not what you or your stylist wants. So here are a few tips and advice for all of you out there with traumatizing stories and who are afraid to ever trust a new professional again.

What if I realize halfway through that I hate my hair?
Speak up and be honest! Some stylists create their own vision for you based on their professional knowledge and what they think they know is best for your face shape. In this situation, it is their ultimate job to- yes, make you look good, but also to make you happy, so if you see your cut going in the opposite direction of what you asked for- speak up.

Remember that even in the middle of the haircut, it’s not too late. Maybe your stylist needs to even it out, or cut shorter or more layers, or blend the layers. As a professional hairstylist I recommend asking questions, but don’t tell your stylist to stop in the middle when, in fact, he or she isn’t even done yet. Questions are good, to help you not only understand what is being done to your hair, but also recognizing that your stylist knows what they’re talking about, which helps you trust them.

​Can I tell my stylist that I hate my hair when it’s done?​
Yes and YES. Every stylist would appreciate their clients honesty, especially if the client doesn’t like something.

So ​how​ do I tell them I’m not happy?
With honesty and a little tact, you will be just fine. Complaining is never ideal for either on of you, but it is important to have a positive dialogue so that you can both reach the same page and avoid any awkwardness. It is also important to try not to beat around the bush because you’re scared you’ll make your stylist upset- I assure you your stylist wants to give you what you want, so be specific about what you dislike.

​Can I ask them to do my hair over?
The client should never feel that they can’t be truthful about the service provided. Your stylist should be more than happy to set themselves apart from anyone else you could go to, and take the extra time to bring your style up to your satisfaction. It’s in everyone’s best interest for you to walk out the door with a smile on your face and your hair looking fabulous, after all.

Before you make known that you hate your haircut, you might want to consider that you may dislike how your hair is ​styled​, not cut.​ For example, your stylist may cut your hair that works best for you hair texture, but style it completely different than you style on a daily basis. I recommend if you’re still not happy with it after washing and drying it yourself for a few days, give your stylist a call.

This seems to happen to me all the time to me. Why?
​If you never seem to feel satisfied with the end results of your haircuts or colors, you ​might​ not be effectively communicating your desired results to your stylist during the consultation (or stylists, if you’ve seen a bunch). If you are not use to having a professional consultation before each of your services, you should request to talk about your hair before your stylist begins even a shampoo.

​How can I prevent this from happening all together?
In general, most bad haircuts and colors can be prevented during the consultation, it’s all about making sure your stylist is on the same page as you and vise versa. If you aren’t honest with your stylist from the beginning, your expectations will not be met. If you aren’t very good at describing exactly what it is that you want, I advise bringing it lots of inspiration photos, and telling your stylist what you see when you show him or her the photos and what you like in the picture specifically. The more references your stylist has to base their professional opinion on for what you want, the more likely you are to get the results you truly want.