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Help Your Clients Understand How Heat Damages Their Hair

by Chair to Chair/Shannon McCarthy on Tuesday, March 22, 2011

shannon mccarthy

Shannon McCarthy is a senior stylist and educator for James Joseph Studio and James Joseph Salon. James Joseph Salon and Studios are the most award-winning salons in Boston with more than 30 local and national awards. James Joseph Salon has been named one of the Top 100 Salons in America by “Elle” magazine, and James Joseph Studio has been named the Best Affordable Salon in Boston. James Joseph has also been one of the Salon Today 200 three times.

I always talk about embracing the curl and loving what you have. Unfortunately, there are still many curlies out there who do not and who may never embrace my way of thinking. I have many friends and clients who worship their flat iron. As a stylist, I struggle with this because I see firsthand the damage to their hair. We all know old habits die hard. I have spent many appointments with clients trying to talk up why the flat iron is so bad and ways to save their hair. Yet I see the same clients returning to me with the same damage from the iron.

Curly girls who “worship the iron” is a trend I don’t think will ever change, so the best thing I can see is to try to work with them by focusing on what they need to do to protect their hair. I have talked until I was blue in the face about products and ways to treat the hair while still ironing. The truth is, there are clients out there who simply just do not want to spend money on products. It is our job as stylists to try to find the best and most affordable products to fit the client’s needs. No one likes a pushy salesman. This can be hard when you know that there is something that needs to be done.

I truly believe clients can tell when you are sincere in what you are saying. When they sense this, they will be a little more ready to invest in some products. They may not buy them that day, but they will strongly consider them for next time. Being knowledgeable with your salon’s product lines and the different needs of clients is also something that will shine through. They will begin to see exactly what you are talking about when they are at home using the wrong products and, most likely, will at least buy one product next time. You need to tell them things like “you need to protect the hair from the heat.” People know this and still don’t understand the importance of it. We need to show them in the salon the specific effects of what not using one creates. Point out the damage that is usually 3 inches in length if not more. Show them the breakage most “iron lovers” have around the hair line and the nape.

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Business Building Techniques

Begin having frequent staff meetings and collaborate on business building techniques used by others that you work with. Every salon has success right inside. Get the top booker to explain how they do it. Pair the weakest with the strongest and let them work next to each other. They can learn from what they hear and see. Do the same with retail sales. Share the ways that the top stay on top.

With cross marketing other services, know who the salon leaders are and copy them. Your staff becomes a resource to each other and by sharing dialouge that works, we all win.

Geno Stampora, Stampora Consulting Inc.

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