Monday, February 28, 2011

Hair-Raising Horror!

Legendary hairstylist Vidal Sassoon was interviewed yesterday on CBS Sunday Morning. He talked about his roots in the business (pun intended), and his artistic vision. In his case, "artistic vision" meant that he, not the customer, was always right.

And this is why I never even considered putting my hair in the hands of an upscale stylist. Too much ego there. I like surprises, but not that kind. When I get my hair cut, my position is this: my hair, my money, my choice. For years, I got my hair cut at Fantastic Sam's and was quite happy with them. I wanted simple, and their stylists delivered beautifully. In the past couple of years, however, things changed. For some unfathomable reason, the current crop of stylists don't seem able to do a simple, one-length blunt cut. They're compelled to layer my hair, even when I give them explicit instructions to NOT do so. In the past two years, I've had two good cuts. Just two. And I am beyond frustrated. In fact, I'm looking at frustrated in my rear-view mirror.

How do I get through to these stubborn girls that I want a wash-and-wear cut, not a work of art? I'm not good with styling tools. The only thing I can do consistently with a curling iron is burn myself. I wash my hair in the shower--at night. No way am I going to get up two hours early so I can wash my hair and spend an hour in front of the bathroom mirror with a blow dryer and round brush!

I tried Great Clips. Same problem. Are stylists now only being taught to layer, or is this just a way to hide mistakes? I find myself wondering if I could get what I'm looking for at a barber shop....

Or maybe even more drastic measures are needed....

I've decided I will no longer tolerate being ignored when I get into that chair. The next time a stylist layers my hair after I've told her not to, she will be doing it for free, because I will no longer pay for a cut I don't want!


  1. I know what you mean. I've asked in the past for them to cut 5" off, but instead, they cut maybe 2 if I'm lucky. Now, I have them measure out what they think is 5" (or whatever) and I'll let them know if it's right or not. I don't mind having layers...and the last time I went to the hairdresser, I actually liked the cut I received. But, I'm very bad for not going to the's just another, I hate having to pay for something that is just going to grow back...that really pisses me off...

  2. Let's try this again...I already commented once but it didn't take!

    I was just saying how I, like you, have a hard time getting a good cut. The difference, though, is I like the layers. My hair is naturally wavy, adn without the layers, it tends to look unruly. With the layers, I can wash and go, no fuss, no muss!

    Last year, I sat in a young girl's chair and showed her with my hands while telling her I didn't want the shortest layer to be any shorter than shoulder length. She proceeded to chop my hair off above my shoulders. Not just layers, ALL OF IT!

  3. Oh, yeah. You're the customer and you have to live with what's on your own head.

    Stand up to those bossy boots wielding scissors. Stop hair abuse now!

  4. Oh, and Vidal sounds like a self absorbed prat.

    Good blog!

  5. Ah, the days when I used to go to get my hair cut...

    Having a shaved head does have its advantages!

  6. I'd like to know whatever happened to "the customer is always right." I can understand if one requests a style their hair can't handle, but I always keep it simple. I KNOW my hair is trouble!

  7. Norma, I have gone thru this for years! I have been known to stand up and walk out. I have been told they know better. My comment? My hair - and I know what I want. I am like you, shampoo at night and wear the next day. One girl wanted to do my hair like an early young Meg Ryan. We almost fought. She kept insisting I'd look younger. Now I get the 'let's set your hair and hairspray it so you look your age' So totally not me.

  8. Vidal Sassoon did an interview on Martha Stewart too. What's up w/the recent press? Anyway, his feature was looney!
    Yeah, I've NEVER wanted to wash and blow dry my hair for two freaking hours! Only on special mostly never.

  9. Great Clips policy is this, within a two week period you can return and have your hair re-cut and if you're still not satisfied, get your money back.

    I work for Great Clips...I believe the younger girls fresh out of school don't have a clue how to cut hair any other way. I know, I see it everyday. Poor listening skills, too.

    Try taking a picture next time.

  10. Shelly--I couldn't have it re-cut in two weeks. She'd cut it too short the first time.

    I drew them a road map! The last stylist I got wouldn't even LOOK at the picture. I said, very clearly, "Do not layer it." Ten minutes later, she's layering the back.

    "What are you doing?" I asked.

    "Layering it."

    I should have seen trouble ahead when she asked me to spell my FIRST name twice. The last name, I could have understood...but the first?

    I had two stylists--one at each salon--who knew their stuff. Tiffany at Fantastic Sams was great. She listened and gave me exactly what I asked for. I should just wait until she's available from now on....

    I just don't understand why a simple one-length blunt cut is so hard to get....

  11. William you lucky SOB!

    Norma, funny post. I would say abandon salon ship and cut your own only last time I did that it became a team effort with my fiance, me and kitchen shears. Ultimately I still landed in front of a hairstylist... and with reaaaalllyyy short hair to boot!

  12. This post just spoke to me. I have such hair issues and I laughed out loud with the picture of the bald head and taking drastic measures. A great post!

  13. 10 minutes for a hair cut . . . max!


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