Ever wondered what your hairstylist does when they aren’t with you?
This will be my tenth year in the hairdressing industry and boy, has it been a ride. I’ve been on the highest of highs and felt the lowest of lows. Laughed with my clients on their happy occasions and sobbed with clients on their sad ones. I’ve listened to women talk about their abusive ex-husbands and I’ve been with clients when they’ve received news of their grand babies arrivals. Believe me when I tell you, I’m invested.
I forget sometimes that you guys only see me once every six weeks to six months. You also only see me in my place of work, where I am earning money to pay my mortgage or daycare fees. It may shock you to know I have a life outside of work. We (hairdressers and other similar industry professionals) all have a story to tell.
5 things you might not know about your hairdresser, but should always remember before you judge us:
1. You have 1 hairdresser, I have 100 clients.
On average I can see up to twenty clients a day, so forgive me if I forget your sons name or where you went on your holiday in May last year. It’s going to take me a minute to remember you. Forgive me if I speak about the same thing as we did last visit, I’ve had one-hundred conversations since then.
2. I’ve been here since 9am.
You’ve booked a haircut for 8pm on a Thursday night. You’ve been finished work for hours, arriving at the salon only to find me frazzled as hell, running ten minutes late and the salon is a mess. Jeez, “Emily’s lost her touch” you may remark. When really I’ve been on my feet for eleven hours, had a fifteen minute lunch break and still sipping on cold coffee. Put yourself in my shoes, do you think you could do this for 40+ hours a week? Forgive me if I don’t seem as enthusiastic as you’d like me to be. I’m tired, my feet hurt and I want to go home.
3. I’m not in control of how much you pay.
Unless your hair stylist is the owner of the salon, we seldom control what you get charged. Even in saying that, it costs a LOT to run a salon. We hate price rises as much as you do, it’s hard to break it to some clients who I know are financially struggling. Unfortunately it’s the way of life, we are constantly paying more and more for everything. You will pay what it is worth to you for anything in life, don’t discount us and don’t blame us.
4. I sometimes take my work home with me.
My husband, David – he knows who some of you are. Not by name, just by the way you touch my life. I come home and think about what you’ve said. You’ve recommended me my doctor, my daycare, my mortgage broker and my favourite restaurants. You’ve given me knowledge, I feel smarter having known you. David has also watched me cry because I’ve been abused by a man who didn’t like my haircut. He’s watched me fume over a client who’s complained about me running 10 minutes late for reasons out of my control. Just like you, my work takes a toll on my personal life. It is equally the worst and best part of my job.
5. I see you sometimes more than I see my friends.
For my actual clients reading this, hello! You give me good life advice, we always have a good laugh and I adore hearing about your families (the good and the bad). I always try to run on time for you, give you 100% of my time and skill, always. I sometimes see you more than my friends, which means when we connect on a personal level it is amazing! However that doesn’t mean I am not a professional industry person. We might laugh and joke, but it doesn’t mean I forget my role in our relationship. Ask for what you want, it won’t hurt my feelings. Even if I have been looking after you for 8 years, I am your hairdresser and you are a paying client.
I get up through the night with my son when he’s teething. I only get to see my husband on Sunday’s. I have the pressures of any other person. Some people forget we aren’t robots and we aren’t slaves. We earn a pittance for a job that requires skill and half a psychology degree.
Where am I when I’m not with you? Enjoying time with my family, just like you.