Everyone likes getting their hair done. Some of us just love getting new styles and colours each time we go and others of us are so passionate about hair that we want to be the hairdresser and not the client.
The idea of taking a boring head of mousy brown hair and transforming it into long blonde tresses is all too tempting for the hair fashionistas amongst us. But there are some things you should know before you go down to your local college to book a place on the next course.
Yes indeed, there are some shocking truths about this profession you may not have considered and so it’s well worth your while to hang about and have a read.
1. You Will Find College Expensive
It can cost thousands of dollars to get a place in a reputable training college. This means you will likely have to take out a loan or if you have the patience, save up to train for your dream profession.
2. You Will Be Training on an Ongoing Basis
As with technology and many more industries today you will need ongoing training even after you have qualified as a hairdresser. Fashion is continuously changing, and equipment and hairstyling techniques are changing all the time as well.
If you don’t keep in tune with these changes it won’t be long before you’re losing clients.
3. You Have To Be Interested in Fashion
In order to survive in any business you’ve gotta be passionate about it and hairdressing is no different. Your customers will spot you a mile off if you lack enthusiasm and interest in the latest trends.
Have a look in the mirror and decide if you think you are making a statement of your own. What does your image say about your sense of fashion? Is this really the industry for you?
4. You Will Be On Your Feet All Day
There is no time for sitting down in a busy salon. You will stand for hours while one customer after another comes in for their upstyle or blowdry.
You will welcome any odd jobs like running to the local shop for change as you’ll get to move around and stretch your legs.
5.You Will Find it Hard To Please Some Customers
Like any other service industry you will get complaints from time to time. You will have to remain professional and learn how to please the customer no matter what.
6. You Will Have To Be Pleasant
It doesn’t matter if you were out the night before, have your period, or are just feeling down – you have to keep smiling when you’re dealing with customers.
This is harder than it sounds and can be draining for even the most happy-go-lucky types.
7. You Will Have To Practise
Hair can be difficult to manage and cutting techniques aren’t all that easy to pick up. It will take a lot of practise and dedication to become a good hairdresser. Be sure you are prepared to make this commitment.
8. You Will Work Long Hours
In most salons the hours are very long. You could be on your feet for nine or ten hours each day – you could also be up very early if you have to do the styling for wedding parties.
9. You Will Hurt Yourself
There are many risks to working in a salon from burns (curling irons), allergic reactions (colours and other products), cuts (scissors) and trips and slips from wires left hanging around.
You have to be very safety conscious working in a salon, both for yourself and your clients.
10. Your Creativity Will be Stifled
You may want to turn all of your customers into Beyonce or David Beckham but unfortunately the reality is that most people are very conservative with their hair. You will have to respect their needs and just go with what they want – they’re paying after all.
11. You’ll Need Energy
Hairdressing is physically draining work. Washing hair, sweeping floors, applying colours, blowdrying – it’s all work and you will need to develop upper body strength to keep up with the demands of a busy salon.
Be prepared for a workout because that is what you have in store for you everyday.
12. You Will Struggle to Find Work
As a junior you will have to hunt down a job that will probably not even pay very well. Get ready to promote yourself to many prospective employers before you get your break.
13. You Have to Work for Years to Make Decent Money
The best way to make money as a hairstylist is to set up your own salon – however, you will have to gain a lot of experience before you will be ready for that.
Be sure that you are willing to put in the time in the long term to reach your goal of having your own salon.
14. You Will Have to Talk to Your Customers
You will have to develop conversational skills – this is harder than it sounds. Clients like to talk about their problems and it will be up to you to listen empathically and respond appropriately.
So, how are you feeling now, are you thinking twice about your dream job or do you still feel that brushing bangs and snipping fringes is the only career for you?
If you have been doing your sister’s hair since you were small then maybe this is the career for you. Either way – don’t say you weren’t warned.