How to prevent a bad haircut and deal with the worst

This is srs business.

An appointment at the hair salon can go one of two ways. You either leave with a glorious mane of pride atop your pretty lil’ head or you shove it into a ponytail as soon as you’re out of there, run home to your mum, cry for days and avoid mirrors at all costs.

This is a circle of no judgement. We have all been there and despite this kind of behaviour being a grotesque demonstration of vanity within our society, hair matters and you are allowed to cry over it.

We’ve rounded up the best ways to prevent a bad haircut and how to deal with the worst.

1. Read reviews online

Visiting a new salon? Read reviews online people. Too many times have we tried out a new shindig only to come home with Christmas tree layers and a thorough Google investigation into all of their horrendous reviews online. It helps before but it doesn’t help after.

2. Bring in photos

It’s hard to explain exactly what you want in words, especially if you’re not an expert. Follow your fave stylists on Instagram and screenshot away. If you’ve got a celebrity hair muse, save images to your camera roll. You could also compile a Pinterest board if you’re super organised. Visuals help so haul them in.

3. Educate yourself

What are long layers? What’s the difference between ombre and balayage? What’s your face shape and what cuts complement it? Google is your friend. Do your research. You’ll be able to understand hair lingo and will respond better to your hairdresser’s suggestions.

4. Build a relationship

It helps to build a loyal relationship with your hairdresser. The expectations will hopefully be high and you won’t get any nasty surprises. If you’re still on the hunt for “the one”, hold off on the pixie cuts and drastic colour changes. It ain’t wise to do something crazy with someone you don’t trust.

5. Speak up

Did the stylist just lop off your locks an inch shorter than what you initially agreed? Speak up. None of us do this but it’s a habit that needs to be changed. Don’t be afraid to question the hairdresser when you’re in the seat. You might be able to save the rest of your hair or simply affirm that you’re both on the same page.

6. The two-week rule

So it’s done and you think it’s hideous. We can’t stop you from freaking out but please consider the two-week rule. We reckon it takes about two weeks for your haircut to “settle”. After a few washes and a bit of experimentation with hot tools and updos, it might just be something that you needed to learn to manage, rather than something you can’t stand completely.

7. Complain

Given it two weeks and you’re still mortified? Complain. The two-week rule definitely needs to be applied here. You don’t want your complaint to be a crying rant over the phone the following day. Hop onto their website and find a contact email. Write a polite, assertive email that addresses your dissatisfaction with the service. They might offer a refund. They might not even respond. But writing the email will be cathartic and you may help them improve their service and prevent them from making the same mistake with another client in future.

8. Flag your next appointment in your diary

Who even knows how often we should be regularly cutting our hair? Every hairdresser says something different and you’ve got to figure out what works best for your hair length and growth rate. Count the weeks and make a note in your diary. Even if your hair grows slowly, it may just need a bit of shape restructuring.

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