Beauty, Business, lifestyle, That girl in the red coat, Women

The Heart of the matter

For those of you who follow my blog, you are well aware that my hubby had a heart attack. The last thing any couple expects, especially at 39. I wanted to revisit my personal tale with you all one more time. We received some terrific news, from three separate M.D.’s, that my beloved is well on his way back to a normal life. The past 9 months have been the greatest of struggles for my beloved, for my family and for me. I won’t get too deep into the details because, not to get all Rhonda Byrne on you, I no longer wish to give the negative any more power.

Over the past months, I have had to cancel plans at the last minute. I have had to say “no” a lot, to a lot of people and occasions and I didn’t always give the real reason, the reason being that my husband didn’t feel well and was in pain. I didn’t always disclose the severity of it all to everyone because it was what was happening to him, I was not going to let it start to define him. There is more to my beloved than his health/heart issues and I was going to do all I could to protect that. I also stayed home because of my lovely daughter. It was bad enough she had to see the initial heart attack. I wasn’t about to leave her home alone with her Dad not feeling well and all that entailed.

The purpose of today’s tale you ask? The point is this – you never know what someone else is going through, so try not to take their actions or their behavior so personally. As I have had to realize in my 41 years, it’s not always about you. A lesson all of us in the beauty biz and retail biz should learn. Sure, there are those who are nasty for the sake of being nasty – those Nellie Oleson’s need our pity, not our anger. I am talking about;

– the woman who comes in looking for Sebastian Shaper Plus and when you tell her it is on order, she looks through you and scowls “what a waste of my time”. Instead of getting upset, I ask her if I can have her number so I can call her when it comes in and I can hold a can for her. In this case, she just looked at me, put her hands down on the counter and said “thank you, that would be so helpful.”. – you see, she was on her way to the funeral home. Her mother had just passed away, and she had buried her brother the month before.

– a woman complaining that all the mousses and root boosts are crap and don’t work in her hair. When I ask her what other products she uses and who colors her hair, I come to find out that she is on chemo and she didn’t like her hair color so she used a box dye and didn’t like that, so used another box dye the next day. I gave her some conditioning treatment samples and explained why it isn’t a good idea to color your hair twice in two days. After 15 minutes, she calmed down and thanked me, and apologized…and purchased some product.

So, the next time someone is being nasty, or plans get cancelled with a reason you feel is an excuse, or your client starts to lose it because her favorite hairspray is on back order, take a minute and try getting down to the heart of the matter. You never know, you may be the only glimpse of kindness that person has seen all day….if they come into the shop with a faulty flat iron in their hand – still be kind. Just be sure to duck.

Beauty, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Would you be your valentine?

It’s February 11th. T minus 3 days until the big day…Valentine’s day. On the radio, at the shop, in the express check out line at the grocery store I hear the same things “He better not forget my favorite chocolate!”, “I better be getting the biggest bottle of Moroccanoil money can buy!”, “If he knows what is good for him I will get a spa package for Valentine’s day!”. Besides getting to be a witness to this ugliness I also got to see a sad, sorry sight…a terrified grown man holding two stuffed bears…most likely terrified because he knew if he didn’t come home with the right gift on Valentine’s day, it may very well be his last Valentine’s day. Quite honestly, if that is how the relationship works, his better half is lucky he is coming home at all. Yeah, I said it.

As you know, from time to time I tell a tale not of Salon ideals or product knowledge but of what goes through my mind, my opinions, take ’em or leave ’em. Today is such a day with such a tale. So many people wait for February 14th. to shower their loved ones with gifts, compliments and love instead of doing it everyday. We put way too much pressure on ourselves and our relationship’s because of a date on the calender.

Here’s an idea…how about we try to have a little Valentine’s everyday. Oh calm down ladies. I am not saying you need to be in a teddy and 6 inch stiletto’s waiting at the door with a martini, but a compliment or a thank you for taking out the trash might be nice…not just for your better half, but for yourself as well. As for the gents, I am not saying you need to bring home flowers every week, but a kiss hello and goodbye everyday would be lovely, again, not just for your better half, but for yourself as well. If one of you ain’t happy…nobody’s happy.

I have quoted Ms. Angelou before and will continue to say it, you teach people how to treat you. Ladies…if you want your gent to get you your favorite chocolates and a spa day…try not making him recite on a daily basis a list of your favorite chocolates and spa services. How about you try being nice. Remember Nellie Oleson? Yeah…she didn’t get what she wanted until she was…NICE. (you know….Percival came to save the restaurant and….oh, go rent the DVD.). As for the gents in the house…if you want your wife to spice up the bedroom attire…telling her that the bra and pantie set you bought her looked great on “Destiny” at the “club” probably isn’t the best compliment. I know you think it is. Trust me…it’s not.

Hug one another every day. Kiss each other hello and goodbye every day. Say “I love you” when you leave the house for the day or before you put your head down each night. Compliment each other. If you criticize, try your best to be kind.- Ladies…if it is that time of the month…wait a day or two to criticize – yeah, I said it. You are not in the right frame of mind and you know it and honestly it just frightens our poor gents. *side note to the gents – if you know what is good for you – you will NEVER mention the above out loud.

Beauty, Business, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized

Salon Etiquette 101

As you all know by now, I manage a Salon/retail shop. At least once a day, everyday (yes, I am serious…everyday) I feel like Miss. Beadle from Little House on the Prairie. Not because I am teaching someone something new – because I feel like I am dealing with Willie Oleson’s bad behaviour or Nellie Oleson’s nasty glare. Now, I have come to realize that maybe some of you cannot help your behaviour. No one had ever told you that it is not polite to throw a flat iron or it isn’t the best idea to sit on the floor and try out the nail polish that you haven’t purchased. So, me being me, I have compiled yet another list for you. Consider it a class in Salon Etiquette. Oh…and for the stylists out there, you may want to pay attention, for this list is for you as well. Come on now…you and I both know that not all stylists out there are behaving nicely or showing any professionalism for that matter. Now class, take your seats and pay attention to the lesson.

Salon Clientele –

– When purchasing a hair brush, please do not take each one off the shelf and run it through your hair. You see, now we cannot sell that brush to another client and we also cannot return it to the manufacturer. Would you want to buy a hairbrush that some person just used? Didn’t think so.

– When purchasing nail polish…do not open the bottle and try the polish on your nail. Again, now we cannot sell that polish to another client and we cannot return it to the manufacturer. All polishes come with a color swatch so you can put the nail swatch up  to your hand to see how the color looks. To clarify, although the swatch is shaped like a fingernail – the color looks the same on a toenail. (yep…if you’ve read my blog…you know the story).

– Do not take the lid off every hairspray and spray it to see if it sprays evenly. Yes, I have been privy to many an explanation by grown women try to explain to me the aerodynamics of hairspray and how it “lands” on the hair. (not to be confused with AG aerodynamic Hairspray…a nice light hold).

– When you are in my shop, all my products are professional salon products and name brands. Everything I sell is good. It comes down to what you are looking for and what your hair needs are. Unless your name is Honey BooBoo, please refrain from the old time favorite “Whatcha got here that’s good? I don’t want any crap stuff.”.

– If you wax and are suffering with red bumps or ingrown hairs on your bikini line, you can just tell us. Seriously, we know what red bumps are and what ingrown hairs are…please…I beg you…unless you look like (and others think you look like) Cindy Crawford…we don’t need to see it.

– We have all had bad hair days. We have all been fed up with our products. Take a breath. When we ask you what you want your hair to look like and what products you are currently using, don’t get mad. We are not blaming you for your hair mishap. We are asking so we know where to start from, to see what will work best for you…don’t get angry. Take a breath, have a complimentary chocolate.

– Just because your last stylist or salesperson didn’t know what they were doing doesn’t mean we are all like that. Be nice. Give us a chance.

Now, for the stylists –

– When your client arrives for their appointment and are in your chair, I don’t care if they have been coming to you for 20 years…do a consultation! Ask them if they were happy with their last service, confirm what you are doing that day. Ask if they have had any life changes, illness or new medication – for all of these factors could affect their hair.

– Got a color service booked? Make sure your client hasn’t been using “at home” color. If you need to ask me why…it may be time to rethink your career choice.

– When you are styling your client’s hair, tell them what you are using. Tell them how much to use and how to apply it. Teach them how to do their hair. SELL THEM THE PRODUCTS!!! This way they can be happy with their new cut for longer than a day. (hey…if you won’t sell it to them…I will gladly help them out…oh that’s right…I already do.).

– When your client is mistaken about a product, don’t pull a Nellie Oleson and laugh at her misconception. Be polite…how about trying “you know, a lot of people think that, but actually” and fill in the blanks. You want your clients to be nice to you? Be nice to them. Respect =respect.

– When the appointment is over, clarify if they need any of the products you used. RE-BOOK them! Women are busy, between work and kids and liquor store runs, they will forget about their hair until that moment they catch their roots in the rear view mirror. They will call for an appointment and won’t be able to get in…and guess what…it is your fault (that is what they are thinking at that moment). Re book them and this isn’t an issue and when they come for their appointment they will feel like you care about them…and we all want to feel that.

So there you have it, Salon Etiquette 101. Hopefully you all have learned something and I won’t be forced to put you in the corner beside Willie.