Hairdressers Reveal How They Prepare For A Client Complaining About Their Cut


Snip, snip here... snip, snip there!

Laying hands on someone's hair can be a sacred experience. People search for years sometimes to find the absolute perfect stylist and hairdresser. It has got to be a nerve wracking job because often customers be crazy when it comes to their locks. w need to realize that everytime is not going to go as planned, so stylists have to be ready for some fallout. After al hairdressers are artists and art is often subjective.

Redditor u/5loki551 wanted to the hairdressers of the world to reach out and discuss.... Hairdressers of reddit. Do you notice when your clients are not happy with their hair but are still trying to be polite? What do feel in these moments?

Wait until I tell my mom!


I cut men's hair. The only way to know is if they tell you. However, it's not uncommon for mothers ( of 20-somethings) and wives to call and complain on their behalf. Last week an irate mom called about her sons bad haircut. It was only after a full conversation and her texting me a picture of the haircut that I realized he was a 25-year-old man.

Once that became clear she backed up, said she wasn't doing this for him, put him on the phone and let him handle his business. His cut was fixed to his liking after that. All he had to do was speak. LustreBonBon

You had 1 Job! 

Is there a polite way of saying, "you literally did the one thing I told you not to do, and now I have to wait another 4 months for it can grow in long enough to have someone else screw it up again?" DammitDan


I'm a customer and a dude. I like simple, quick, and quiet cuts. I go to this old USSR type lady who doesn't speak during the cut. She just asks how short and gets it done. Anytime she makes a mistake (which is rare) she will say loudly "YOU HAVE PROBLEM?" and it scares me so much I just say no and she finishes the job.

Love going to her. But I know she has seen some crap so her messing up my hair is not worth whatever she would do to me if I said yes I DO HAVE PROBLEM. Tradehelp17

It's not life or death! 

I once went to a new hairdresser, this guy was really nice but he was firmly convinced that he could give my hair some nice curls and insisted that we tried it. The thing is, I know my hair. It's thick, mid length, and tends to straighten itself due to the weight and thickness of it. And I don't mind, I like my hair, it's easy to take care of, soft, doesn't need a lot of work in the morning to look good. But I never could curl it, it just won't cooperate.

So this hairdresser who never took care of my hair before propose that we style them in a rather pretty way, with soft, natural curls. I tell him it won't work, many other hairdresser tried before. So he says: "yeah, but I never did, and I'm sure I can, so let's try it" I agreed, thinking what the hell, if he succeeds good for me, if he fails it won't matter.

So for nearly an hour I watched the poor guy try to dry my hair in a hundred different ways to get those damned curls, only to end up with what looked like a stork's nest on my head (only much cleaner and softer).

He ended up more disappointed than me, he bore such a crushed look in his eyes upon realizing his defeat, while I was laughing my ass off at what I looked like . In the end I told him it didn't matter, really i didn't mind, in just half an hour my hair would return to its usual shape. So I paid him and left, he was so sorry he made me pay the short hair price. I went back a couple times since then, and I was happy with the result each time. dalaigh93

Foiled Again!


My wife just went to have her hair lightened, apparently her hairdresser left a foil on too long and a huge clump of hair fell out. She was devastated as you might imagine.

The hairdresser blamed it on her and said she moved too much. I went back to talk to a manager (my wife can be too nice sometimes) and also to show them the chemical burn on her head. Even the manager tried to blame my wife and say she had a sensitive scalp.

After an hour of arguing they gave us some product (gee thanks) and said the next treatment was on them. Nah screw that, I did a chargeback for the cost and she'll never go back. underwriter

So many questions... 

I definitely notice. My stomach immediately drops, and I feel a little upset that the guest doesn't like it, especially if it was a long service, but more disappointed in myself for not being the best stylist I could be. It's pretty easy to tell if they actually like it or not, because if they don't like it, they'll touch and pull on their hair more than usual, get up really close to the mirror to really inspect, and they take a minute to say anything to you instead of just looking in the mirror and being like, "omg I love it, it looks great!" Usually if I see that their not enthusiastic, I will inspect, ask questions, and try to fix it as best I can before they even leave. "Are you sure that it's thinned out enough for you?", "Are you sure it's a good length?", "Those highlights are definitely gold instead of ash, let's mix up a different toner real quick."

Usually asking those questions helps you fix the problem and the guest leaves happy. You definitely can't please everyone though, so if they're still not happy after I tried to fix it, I'll do a more thorough consultation the next time and talk to another stylist about my plan for their hair to make sure what I'm doing is correct, and if they still don't like it, I refer them to another stylist. Reddit

I'm only Human! 

Honestly, I've experienced this a couple times. I'm an open book (which my boss does not always enjoy), and if I sense something, I just ask. More often then not a client will brush it off. Sometimes, they point out what they think is a flaw and I just fix it for them. No need to be scared. We're people too :) joshwin01

Be Prepared! 

Yes. Absolutely. In a situation like this, color or cut, I notice immediately even if they say 'i like it' in a sheepish manner.

If this happens, I tell the client for next time what I think would look good. They then feel more comfortable, and 99% of the time they open up and we discuss what we can do next time to get closer to their goal. thedish773

Speak Up! 

I absolutely notice and it just makes me really sad and disappointed in myself. It's my job to make you look and feel good and I failed you. But please don't be afraid to ask me to change something for you! It's our job to make you look like the best version of yourself, if there's anything I can do to remedy the situation I have no problem doing it. Just tell me what you want me to do. abortionlasagna


Hairstylist for 15 years here... It does indeed suck when someone won't fully tell you the truth about how they like the end result. You really can see it in their eyes or read their body language.

However; I've realized a few things over the years: Some people really struggle to explain what they want. If a consultation takes 15 minutes or more, they are difficult AF and you do not want them as a client. I will repeatedly ask questions just to make certain that we're both on the same page. Please don't get annoyed. I don't want you to leave unhappy. You can't please everyone. There are miserable people in this world who want everyone else to be just as miserable as them. Finding a great hairstylist/barber can be like finding a great doctor or mechanic. You're not going to like everyone, but you'll eventually find one that's perfect enough for you.

(There are many more things, but it's really late and I'm exhausted. These were the first things that came to mind.)


The Truth is....

No lie i once went for a haircut and when asked what i wanted and after telling the hairdresser what i wanted i was promptly told

"Oh you aren't good looking enough for that style!"

I was deeply insulted but being English i smiled laughed and agreed paid left and never returned. Btw I'm definitely no stunner but I'm also far from average looking either! o0CYV3R0o

What should I say?

I'm a type of person who doesn't know how to really get excited. Even on Christmas I'm happy to have gifts but I don't know how to express happiness to a sufficient level.

Getting my hair done is terrible. I don't know how to experiment with my hair. Things that I like I'm told my hair won't do it or it takes upkeep that I wont be able to keep up with. So I get my hair done and I don't want to keep conversation with the hair lady. I just want it to be done and over with and the anxiety of having to look excited freaks me out. It's a new hair cut, you're going to have to give me like 2 days to get used to it. dausy

Hush Child...


I am relieved when a client says they just want to be quiet. I hate having to make the small talk, but feel like we are supposed to entertain. The sitting with your eyes closed is a good way to deliver message. I am honestly much more efficient if I am quiet. Some clients never shut up and just talk at me for 2 hours. It is awkward for everyone. I often have thought about making a card to put on my station. 1 side green to say "let's chat." Other side read to say "no talking" there is nothing wrong with simply saying "is it ok if we are just quiet." I would be shocked if a stylist was offended. Those are my favorite clients! rdlm1001

We know best! 

I work at a salon. Most of the clients this happens with are clients that want to begin the journey of going blonder. Some places will try to get you as light as possible, regardless of the damage to your hair. Others, like ours, will try to balance lightening your hair with keeping it healthy/still attached to your head. We explain to clients that this means it often takes multiple sessions of foiling over a few months to finally achieve their desired shade. We show them photos of what we will realistically be able to achieve. We go over the stages of color the strands will go through with each session of bleach and how this can change according to previous colors etc. We even get them to sign a form stating they understand and agree. And still ... Multiple times a week, they get upset. They demand for us to take them lighter. They say even though we told them it wouldn't be, they still thought it would be as light as they originally wanted on the first go. Then they ask for their money back, as if the product and the last few hours of labor are for nothing. So when we see this look on the face of this specific type of client ... We feel frustrated. babettesoatmeal


We notice! (Most times) Please tell us is what you don't like so we can fix it! Our job is awesome when the costumer is happy, and it can ruin my whole week of someone is really unhappy with the hair. I always try and fix it and usually it works and the result is great, but some people wont let us fix it or doesn't tell us and that sucks. eirinemilie

The Waterworks....

When I was 20, I got a terrible cut and style. I just wanted an inch off and to have it straightened, but she cut off several inches and flipped it out at the bottom.

I tried to hide the tears as I was paying and started bawling on the way home. She obviously told the manager, because a few minutes later I got a call. She asked if I wanted to come in to fix it, but I told her it wasn't possible because it was a length issue. She refunded my money and told me to ask for her specifically the next time I came in.

Side note: I wouldn't normally cry over a few inches of hair, but it was so short I couldn't put it up to even hide it and I was one my way to a work function with bosses I wanted to impress. PracticallyUnperfect

Don't Despair.... 

Makes me feel like I just wasn't cut out for this line of work and I want to give up. Dilnob

And you and YOU.... You're gonna LOVE me!!


I make sure they leave my chair happy. I consult clients every time, even if they're regulars. I won't let clients leave if they're not happy. I can count on one hand how many times that's happened and its always when they want to try something new that won't look good. I will compromise with them and let them know its not a good idea. My clients trust me 100%. I have no problem "fixing" it if they don't like it. But I also make them do certain things if its a drastic change I can't redo in one appointment. Like bangs, a short cut or a different color. I'll have them go to a wig store and test them out to see if they like it. I also have them bring in pictures so I can make sure we're on the same page.

There's always that one person trying to get free services. I can spot them as soon as they start talking. That's a WHOLE other deal. Sorry for the word vomit. I've been in this biz for a very long time and there's so many aspects to it. sjsharkb8

Magic takes time.... 

My missus is a hairdresser and hates it when girls with 12-inch long jet black hair with split end come in and expect to leave an hour later with bright blonde hair the same length. Cameron7212

The customer is not always right!


This one time I wanted to do a fancy coloring so I spent ages researching cuts and colors that would look good on me and then researched salons that specialized in coloring, down to the stylist I wanted. I saw her work, she seemed competent.

What I asked for: balayage, don't touch the scalp What I got: two curtains of color framing my face, going from scalp to tip

So instead of getting a coloring that seamlessly transitions from my natural to the color I wanted, I got the most obvious disaster. I didn't want to take up more time since I had been there for hours, and I was afraid that she would charge more if I said something, so I had to just grin and bear it.

I have pretty wavy curly hair so haircuts rarely look good right after though, so if I hate it it's probably not your fault (unless you ignore the cut I requested which seems to be often). Rhetorical-Rhino


You May Also Like
Hi friend— subscribe to my mailing list to get inbox updates of news, funnies, and sweepstakes.
—George Takei