I’m the sort of person who doesn’t want to spend time on her hair. I understand many people enjoy spending the time on creative hair styles, colors, etc. Not me. My ideal is hair that can air dry and look good. That is not my lot in life, my hair is a wavy/frizzy mess that requires the brute force of a hot hair dryer to beat it into submission, or to appear in some accordance with what is acceptable in our society.
So when I go to the hair dresser, I tell them: I want it to be stylish, but simple. I need to be able to blow dry this myself. As a result, I have had basically the same hair style since kindergarten, and yet I always feel like I’m changing it up. I changed hair dressers about three years ago to one closer to my house (my long story with my old hair dresser, who I loved, and how she moved to a super upscale salon, where super upscale meant super expensive and super judge-y employee (real people wear jeans, don’t give me that look!) will have to wait for another time. Over time, I started noticing odd layers in my hair. Chunks that didn’t blend in and just seemed to be there for no reason. My hair dresser explained they gave my hair ‘light’. She must have been creating new layers with each visit because like the frog placed in cold water that starts to boil, I did not notice at any one time what was happening and suddenly I had what I think in the 70s was called a fringe. My hair had the length I liked, but only a very thin layer in the back, then all these complicated layers. One day I looked at my hair and thought: what the frig is going on here and how have I not noticed this happening? And let me tell you, once the summer hit with it’s humidity, it was not a good scene.
The next time I went in, I told her I can’t style this. I need something simple. I think we should cut the length, try to even it up with some of the layers and then grow these out so I just have long layers. Her response was: Fine! With all the attitude of someone who means the complete opposite of fine. She cut a straight line around the back, did a little shaping around the front and announced she was done. I don’t think it took three minutes. Drying my hair took easily five times as long. Then we get up to the desk and she says their prices have gone up. Excuse me? I’m now paying more for increased rudeness and less service?
I get that I’m not the salon’s most lucrative customer. I don’t color my hair and I rarely buy the products. I know from my old hair dresser that sometimes they are required to bring in a certain amount of money or new types of business, which puts pressure on them to put pressure on their clients. I make up for this by giving the hair dresser a big tip, significantly more than 20%. So it was shocking to me when I went to a new hair dresser and told her this story and got to the price increase, she said: oh, she did that deliberately. Um.. what? Oh, yeah, we have some leeway on setting the prices. I can grandfather a customer in at an old price for awhile, if I want. So my hair dresser was so pissed that wanted to do something different that she was rude and deliberately charged me more? What the actual fuck? Is this not a service industry? My hair is easy. I can get in and out relatively quickly, I can fit in around your other, more time intensive, money generating clients. People like me need to get their hair cut, too.