Tuesday, August 25, 2015

How To Find The Right Hair Salon

3 Tips For Picking Your Next Salon

3 tips for picking your next salonMy hair is important to me...I'm a natural hair blogger, why wouldn't it be?! There are different kinds of women out there; those who can do their hair on their own at home, those that have to go to the salon to get their hair done, and those in between. I'm an in between kind of woman leaning more towards the have-to-go-to-the-salon side! Knowing this, I've had to perfect the best way to find the right salon for me. I used this method to find the best cosmetologist in the world when I was in NC and I'm hoping for the same results here.

Nothing is foolproof, but this method has worked before, so I have no choice but to put it to work again. Here are the three tips that lead me in the right direction when looking for an awesome salon.

Tip 1: Referrals & Research

In order to find a salon, you have to have options to pick from. My go-to for finding salons is referrals. I look for people who have hair I like (these can be people I know or random people walking by on the streets...lol) and ask them if they know of any good salons in town. I talk to my friends and coworkers, let them know what I'm looking for, and ask if they have suggestions.

Google results for natural hair salons in the DC, VA, and MD area
Google Salons
Once I get the name of a salon, I like to research that salon. I go to the salon's website to see what kind of business it is. I find them on social media and I watch their social media page(s) to see what kind of things they have going on. I also like to see pictures of the work coming out of the salon so I can have an idea of what to expect.

You can also do your own research to find salons in your area. Social media is a bigger now more than ever. Doing your own research works best if you're in a bigger city. Google salons, or natural hair salons, in your area. There are articles out there that list of salons in many areas, blogs like mine that talk about salons they've been too, and much more. Finding salons through Google is also easier if salons have, and actively operate, social media pages. The salon, or its social media account, can pop up in Google searches.

If salons aren't active on the internet, that makes it harder for to judge what to expect. So, unless I know someone who regularly gets their hair down there, I'm less likely to pick "silent" salons.

Tip 2: Try It Out

All the referring and researching in the world will never compare to actually going into a salon and sitting in the chair. Use the information you've gathered to make the best choice you can. Go to the salon and to get a feel for it; get a feel for the atmosphere, for your stylist, for the other people who work there, and from the customers that are around. See if this is a place you would feel comfortable spending a few hours at every visit.

Braiding natural hair in a salonVisiting a salon once will not be enough to make a decision. You want to give a salon a set amount of time to win you over. For me, that magic number is between 2 and 3 months. I want to get a sense of what kind of knowledge the stylist has about hair, in general, and about my hair.

Also, this trial period is a time for hair maintenance...not dramatic hair changes!! Unless there is a dire need for it, you don't want to go into a new salon and get haircuts, trims, color, or anything of that nature. Stick to the basics!! This period is strictly for getting a feel for the salon...not making major life decisions!

Tip 3: Make a Pro and Con List

The hardest part for me is that it's easy for me to get comfortable in a place. You build relationships with people during the trial period and you forget that the most important part of finding the right salon is doing what's best for your hair. So, making a pro and con list is one way of taking your feelings out of making the decision to stay indefinitely or try other places.

It's simple enough. On the pro side, write down things you like about the salon and your visits there. On the con side write things that you didn't like so much. Once your trial period is done, you should have enough information to make a decision about whether you want to stay or go.

The thing about this method is that you can use it when trying any new service or provider for the first time; doctors, mechanics, gardening services, etc.! I recently found out about, and used, zocdoc.com and thought how wonderful it would be if all services had a site like that. As for me, I'm in the middle of my trial period with this natural hair salon. Stick around to see what decision I make!

What method do you use when trying to find a new salon?

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