7 Rude Things People Do At The Salon

Avoid these beauty salon blunders!

The salon can be a sacred place for people who are seeking out self-care, professional expertise, and the instant confidence boost that comes with a bouncy blowout, new hair color, or shiny manicure. However, no matter if you’re a weekly regular who drops in for a blow-dry or more of a casual salon frequenter, there’s certain impolite behaviors that we can all agree make it less enjoyable and relaxing. Here, we’ve rounded up the worst salon etiquette no-nos to avoid with helpful input from Southern Living editors and real-life hair stylists. You might even spot your biggest beauty pet peeve.

Woman on Phone at Hair Salon

Getty Images/Antonio_Diaz

Talking on the Phone

This is perhaps the cardinal rule of the salon. Speaking on the phone is not only inconsiderate to the salon employees, but also to the other clients receiving services. There are always exceptions for emergencies and very quick exchanges, but try to avoid making calls unless it’s important. “I’ve even seen people on video calls on multiple occasions,” says Commerce Editorial Director Brittany Morgan. If talking on the phone is a no-no, FaceTiming is definitely a faux pas

Texting Too Much 

People constantly lament the invention of the smartphone, and one of the reasons why is because of how much texting has become wildly popular in public places. While it can be easy to shoot off a text every so often at the hair salon without being rude (especially while hair color processes), it’s much more of a disruption at the nail salon where your hands are needed for the service. If you absolutely need to send a text, use your judgment and choose a time when the technician does not need one or both of your hands, so that you do not hold up the appointment from running efficiently. 

Skipping the Tip 

There might not be a more widely-noted misdeed at the salon than not tipping your stylist or technician. When stepping into a salon, it should be with an expectation that the base cost does not include a tip and, therefore, one should be added at the end. If you’re not sure what’s appropriate, see our guides to how much to tip at the hair salon and how much to tip at the nail salon

Ignoring Your Stylist or Technician

It should go without saying, but it’s impolite to completely ignore or disregard whoever is completing your salon service. Some simple things to remember: Always greet salon professionals, respond when spoken to, make light conversation when appropriate, and say thank you at the end of the appointment. “You certainly don’t have to hold a conversation the entire time you’re in the chair, but it’s simply rude not to acknowledge someone’s presence,” adds Senior Homes and Features Editor Betsy Cribb.

Forgetting Personal Hygiene Etiquette 

Sure, your arms might be slightly encumbered underneath a hair-coloring cape, or your hands might be in the midst of a manicure, but that doesn’t have to mean that you can’t heed normal etiquette when it comes to things like coughing and sneezing without covering your mouth or nose. Simply ask the stylist or technician if you can raise your elbow to your face in order to keep germs to yourself. 

Changing Your Service After You Arrive

Salons work on a tight schedule that is built around which services are requested in advance when you book an appointment. Therefore, it can throw a wrench into the whole salon schedule when you try to change your appointment after you arrive. For example, this can mean showing up to the salon and asking to add on another service, such as hair color in addition to your booked haircut, or drastically changing the appointment type, such as from a blowout to a haircut. This not only affects the schedule of your hair stylist or nail technician, but also the appointment times of other patrons coming after you. 

Being a Bad Gossip

Salons have always been a popular space for lighthearted gossiping between friends and friendly strangers. However, it’s one thing to share funny stories or your own personal issues with your stylist, and another to turn a haircut into a full-on bashing session. Goodness forbid anyone is listening! It’s also inappropriate to speak badly about other salon employees to your stylist, such as a receptionist or a stylist you’ve seen in the past. It’s no secret that being confined to a chair makes us feel the need to make conversation, but as the saying goes: If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. 

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