3 Things Your Hair Stylist Wishes You Knew Before Your Appointment

Know these hair appointment guidelines.

Things Your Hair Stylist Wish You Knew
Photo: Peathegee Inc / Getty Images

Being unprepared for a hair appointment is a gamble only a few brave individuals take. On a great day, all goes well. On a not-so-fabulous day, two inches turns into four—plus bangs. If unprepared for the trip, the road to discovering the rulebook for pre-cut and pre-color proceedings at the salon is fraught with potential misgivings. Luckily, we have tips straight from the stylist's mouth to help you get your most flattering strands.

Aside from the core tenets of salon etiquette—arrive on time, tip appropriately, keep off the phone—other guidelines don't necessarily fall under the basics. Here are three things to know before your next hair appointment.

1. Lay Off the Hair Products

It's generally not ideal to arrive with heavy product build-up from styling your hair the day of your appointment, especially if you're getting a dry cut or highlights before washing. It can cause hair color to go on unevenly and affect how your hair stylist evaluates your pre-cut hair type and texture. Leza Duncan, a stylist at Salon U in Birmingham, Alabama, gave us a welcome exception: "It's fine to use products you normally use for your everyday blow-dry, but stay away from a lot of hairspray."

2. Bring Pictures

Perhaps the number one salon rule to remember: Always bring tangible inspiration that details your vision clearly and objectively. Describing the type of layers or shade of color you're looking for can be difficult, and the stylist might imagine your words differently. A picture is worth a thousand words. Don't worry. We have all the options to get you started.

Duncan adds: "Be prepared to really communicate with your stylist about what does and does not work for your hair. Start with a length you want, and find pictures of looks you could see yourself loving."

3. Keep Your Hair Type in Mind

Someone with thin or super fine hair might benefit more from one cut, while someone with thick or curly hair might prefer a different cut. You must bring in inspirational photos to show your stylist that seem plausible for your hair thickness and texture. Additionally, be open-minded if your stylist might recommend specific tweaks to your inspiration that suits your hair type better—Hair stylists train to know what will make your hair look best! Odds are any vision you have can be achieved to fit your head of hair, but it might take some flexibility to get there. Some typical flourishes can be easily adapted to suit different hair types: layers, bangs, and length.

These snippets of salon advice will help prepare you for successful strands at your next appointment.

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