Salon Advice – Help! My hairdresser has lost interest – what should I do?

Hair Romance salon advice - when your hairdresser loses interest
Have you ever been in the situation where things were really good with your hairdresser but then started to change, and maybe even gone from bad to worse?

I received a great email from Marilynette asking for some salon advice. Like me, she has a great respect for hairdressers and is obsessed with her hair. In her email she wrote:

I found a new hairdresser and just loved her. She got the color exactly right and the cut as well, plus she does a fabulous blowout.

But here’s my question, why is it that after some 6 to 8 times with a hairdresser, just when you think things are going very well, they seem to lose interest?

That’s a really good question and something I’ve noticed on occasion too. I believe each situation is different and depends on the hairdresser too.

In some cases, I think your hairdresser can become comfortable. They think they have you as a regular client so they don’t bring their ‘A’ game to every appointment.

I mean, it’s ok to have an off day. No-one is good at their job 24/7, especially when they have to be highly creative and technical at the same time. And stand on their feet all day. It’s just not possible. I agree with Marilynette that once they think you are a regular, they stop trying to win you over and can let mistakes happen.

It’s hard for most people to mention it to their hairdresser. I’m not particularly confrontational and it can be difficult to discuss with them.

The consultation is key

One thing I try and do is make sure I still have that consultation before the appointment starts every time. Even if it’s for a trim. I think setting those expectations that you want your hairdresser to run through the process with you makes them a little more aware of what they’re doing too.

Managing the expectations is a two-way street and the consultation is key to keeping a happy relationship with your hairdresser.

But if that’s not the issue…

Now in Marilynette’s case, she had done this. Marilynette explained that at her last appointment she’d asked for a change, had a consultation but walked out with a hair disaster.

Now in this case, it’s up to you and depends on how you feel. I’d be inclined to give your hairdresser another chance to fix your hair.

Or if you feel that things at the salon have changed, and this is the reason for the problems it may be time to look for a new hairdresser.

Has this ever happened to you? What is your advice?

Or if you’re a stylist, what’s your side of the story?

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  1. Merel says

    Pfff, that’s a tough one. I think I would have difficulties with trusting a new hairdresser with my hair. I would ask my hairdresser to fix it, she did a good job the last few times she cut my hair, so I think she can do it again!

    • Hair Romance says

      I agree Merel, no-one’s perfect and if it was good before I’d stick to the same hairdresser.

  2. says

    Oh yes, I’ve experienced this. I was seeing the salon director and I found that after a while my hair was getting half-assed to the point where entire patches of roots weren’t coloured and my hair was cut badly.

    Luckily I got a referral to someone else in the salon who was outstanding. It was slightly awkward for the first few appointments but at the end of the day I’m a regular and I’m still in the same salon. It worked out the best for everyone.

    • Hair Romance says

      Ah yes I remember, and so glad you were able to transition to a new stylist in the same salon x

  3. redambition says

    This happened to me not that long ago. I was referred to a hairdresser by a friend, and they were fabulous for a few years, until mistakes and half-hearted jobs kicked in. My last two appointments were particularly bad…

    I’d gone bright red with a semi-permanent colour (done by the stylist), and somehow it left a permanent stain on part of my hair… and at my next appointment I said I wanted to go back to my natural colour and get rid of the staining. It was obvious it wasn’t fixed as soon as the dye was washed out, but they just continued with my appointment until I pointed out that the staining was still there. It then took a few attempts to get the staining out, and part of the solution meant I ended up with foils I didn’t want in order to feather the colour (free of charge, thankfully). When I left that appointment, they knew I wasn’t completely happy with what had been done.

    I gave them one last chance after that, and that appointment was the last straw. I had some highlights put in (to help grow out the previous unwanted foils) and I ended up with raccoon stripes in some of them as they completely missed sections of hair when applying the colour. I didn’t notice the stripes until I washed and styled my hair myself at home, so I made the decision to just find a new salon.

    • Hair Romance says

      that sounds like it really went bad redambition. Glad you made it clear to them but shame they couldn’t fix it properly. Hope you’ve found a new salon you’re happy with x

  4. says

    Omg, I am going through this exact same thing!! I’ve been with the same hairdresser since I was 15. He’s done my mom’s and my godmother’s hair since the 80’s. He’s fantastic, and clearly the most popular at the salon he’s in right now. But lately he’s lost interest, and even his usual PASSION for change, probably related to his move from his own salon to a friend’s.

    So I tell him I want ombre 2-3 years ago, he tells me the ombre I’m after (I had showed him a Mila Kunis picture) is a secret hairstylist trick (clip ins) and not dyed ombre at all. Later he told me ombre was going out of style. I don’t care! I wanted it damnit! Lol.

    Now it’s gotten to the point that I don’t know what I want anymore. I have big, voluminous, long hair and it’s looked pretty much the same forever. I change up my bangs a lot but I’ve always been weary of color (though I love it on other people!) and I feel that my hairstylist is making me wearier because it’s convenient for him!

    Help. I’m thinking of dropping him but then I feel so guilty about it… If I don’t drop him, how should I ask for a color/highlight change? What change should I go for to begin with? Idk! :/

    • Hair Romance says

      Hi Nathy, that’s a hard one as you have a long relationship and you say he’s fantastic. If you want to stay with him I’d collect some more inspiration images and have a proper consultation and agree on a colour that you’re both happy with before you begin. Don’t feel you have to agree to what he wants. If you do want to switch hairdressers, get a recommendation from a friend with great hair. It helps if they have similar hair to you. Good luck x

  5. Trixi says

    I’m a hair colourist in a top sydney salon, after reading the above comments it perceive there are a few things happening. First in the case of hairdressers not delivering a good result or being inconsistent with their result there are very simple reasons consultation is key, it’s also important as a client to be on time for appointments ( time with each client can be booked very tight 10mins makes a difference! ) be clear, saying “your the expert” is like saying “I have no direction do what you want” which doesn’t always give the best result. My second perception is technical ability not every hairdresser has the technical know how – there are many salons that do. I suggest if your getting a blank look from your hairdresser when you ask for a new style keep the look you have for now and have a consultation in another salon about the new look you want ( consultations aren’t a commitment to go there but it gives you a clear idea on what can be achieved ). Sometimes when colouring there is a point of compromise and if you are told no more than a once it is possible that your hair may not achieve that result no matter who you see. So ask why it’s not possible ( it purely could be time factor they have an hour but it will take 3 hours etc.) or you natural colour prevents a perfect result and sometimes it’s cost you can’t get million dollar hair on a $10 budget. I hope this helps a little

    • Hair Romance says

      Thanks so much for leaving a comment Trixi, it’s great to hear from behind the chair. Thanks for your advice x

  6. says

    My issue is somewhat minor, my stylist used to cut my hair perfectly every time, but the last couple of times it’s like she’s totally forgotten what bangs are and just sort of given me a long layer in front instead.

    She hasn’t destroyed my hair or anything, but it’s not nearly as attractive as when she cuts it right. My wedding is coming up this fall and I’m super nervous about trying to get her to cut the darn bangs right.

    • Hair Romance says

      So frustrating, but on the bright side – too long is better than too short. Go back and ask her to trim it the way you want. And good luck for your wedding! x

  7. Julie says

    Excellent column! In my situation, my hairdresser is great with my color, but I don’t like how he cuts my hair. I’d prefer to get my hair cut elsewhere but still have him do the color. How do I break the news or should I just find a new salon altogether?

    • Hair Romance says

      Thanks Julie. You can definitely make the break to a new stylist for cutting and keep your colourist. You want to spare his feelings, so on your next appointment just skip the haircut. Say you’re growing your hair or something like that. Or say you don’t have as much time as normal so just do the colour. Then go to a new stylist for a cut a week later. If at your next appointment he asks, you can say you went to a salon that’s closer to work/home or that your friend insisted you try and you don’t him to cut your hair now. Good luck x

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