We’ve all experienced hair appointments that left us feeling our best selves, as well as appointments that had us crying in the car or tearing up on public transit. In the constant search for that perfect salon or soulmate stylist, the question becomes: did you book a hair consultation? A hair consultation is the key to achieving the mane that you desire. The old saying goes, “it pays to be prepared.” Getting on the same page as your stylist before the appointment even starts will set your tresses up for success. Here’s how to prepare and what to expect from a hair consultation!
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About the Expert
Beth Nuccio is a professional stylist with over 10 years of cutting and color experience. Known for her precision cuts and expert blondes, she works out of her space, Studio.b, in Chicago where her goal is to create a look that is authentically you.
What Is a Hair Consultation?
A hair consultation is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, but its purpose is paramount to a successful appointment. We spoke to expert colorist and precision stylist, Beth Nuccio, about the oh-so-necessary service. “The purpose of a consultation is to talk over a haircut or color service, exchange ideas, and analyze a client’s hair to best understand what they are looking for.”
In a world where expectation is everything, Nuccio continues, “Consultations are important because they ensure both the stylist and client are on the same page about expectations, and if the desired results are achievable.” Communicating the ins and outs of your desired hair service prior to the appointment saves time, money, and hurt feelings for both you and your stylist behind the chair.
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How to Prepare for a Hair Consultation
Being properly prepared for your hair consultation will speed up the process, as well as ensure you and your stylist are on the same page. While not every client or service requires a hair consultation, they are especially valuable when looking to make a big change, or working with a new stylist. “I find consultations are most beneficial if a new or regular client is looking to undergo a drastic style change,” says Nuccio. “Consultations are also beneficial when doing color corrections or fashion colors.”
A hair consultation will require some questions, some references, and some honesty from both you and the stylist. “Pictures are very helpful for clients to bring to a consultation. These could be inspiration pictures of other people, or pictures of themselves if they are looking to replicate a previous style they had,” says Nuccio. Using references and showing up with honest answers about your hair history will ensure that the stylist has the proper supplies, as well as enough time booked.
What to Expect During a Hair Consultation
If you’re curious about what to expect at your hair consultation, get ready to answer some questions—but also, don’t be afraid to ask some of your own. Questions are a great way to discover how achievable your hair goals are, as well as how long they may take, and their cost.
Nuccio knows these questions are the key to a good salon experience. “I normally ask my clients about their hair history. This includes styling routines (if they use a blow dryer or hot tools), when their last cut/color was, how often they shampoo, general lifestyle questions, and how often they are willing to be in the salon for maintenance.” All of these factors will contribute to the end result, and how you and your stylist can get there.
While this may seem like a lengthy conversation, the typical consultation usually lasts between five to 15 minutes. The amount of ground covered in this short time is entirely dependent on you. If at any point you don’t feel clear on the process, speak up. Stylists love questions and communication. Ask about cost if you need to, be truthful about maintenance commitments from your end, and be open to what is best for the integrity of your hair. If you keep all of this in mind, then booking your hair consultation will be a breeze.
Ready to gather some inspiration for your hair consultation? HERE’s how to pick the best reference photos to bring to your next appointment!