We all have those clients that come in knowing exactly what they want. Fumbling through their purse, they pull out 17 pictures of magazine ads and whatever images they may have found on Pinterest. Just because this hair looks great on that particular model, does not mean that the clients’ face shape, hair texture, density, etc. can support that particular style. Even though we may explain to this certain client that they cannot wear this style, they persist. I have seen many hairdressers try to execute that exact look and the client usually walks out disappointed.
There is a huge difference in being a service provider and a hair artist behind the chair. Service providers ask the client, “what length would you like, how short would you like your layers, and where would you like your fringe to fall”. With those questions you are giving complete control of the service to your client. They can go anywhere, even your competition down the street to receive that type of service, and maybe for a much lower price tag.
At The Harlot we do things much differently. We are hair artists. We create looks that bring out all of the best features in a client. This is what sets us apart.
As a hair artist, the client consultation begins before I even introduce myself. I watch how they walk in the door. Are they shyly walking in or do they have a lot of confidence? Are they wearing the latest street trends, or are they dressed in business professional attire. How tall are they? These things can tell you a lot about the vision you are going to create on this particular person. As I guide my client to the chair I have an idea of how I would like to evolve this individual’s look.
Once in the chair I ask my client what they would like to see with their hair by the end our time together. Usually they have a vision of what they may want, so I listen to what they have to say. After they have given me the rundown, I always like to share with them what I know will look best on them. This is the most critical time in their visit. You have to be gentle on your delivery, but let them know what will look best. Clients become afraid of technical terms. We speak two different languages. Use emotional words when describing what you want to create. Example; rather than saying “angles around your face will look great”, you can say “I’d love to create softness through the front, that will open up your face and show off your beautiful features.” Let them know your vision. YOU are the artist. YOU have been trained in the technical part. Let the client know what you would like to see, and most of the time they will agree.
This industry is growing at a rapid pace. More and more amazing stylists are coming out of the woodwork. It’s no longer about being a service provider and giving your client exactly what they think they need; it’s about creating and enhancing beauty on the canvas you are given.
Be different. Be an individual. Be an artist.
Oliver Shortall @ The Harlot Salon Venice, CA