Beauty, communication, Hair Care, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, writing

Tales of Truth – 19th Edition

Well, ladies and gents, boys and girls, the full moon has arrived and with it some amazing and dare I say, gruesome tales of truth. I have been in the retail/customer service gig for over 25 years and thought I had heard and seen it all. …well, I stand corrected.

– The phone rings, I answer with my standard greeting. “Are you open?” is what I am asked. “Yes. We are open.”. “So, you are open?”. “Yes, we are open 9:30 – 9:00 today.”. “So, if I come over there, you’ll be open, right?”.  ….sigh

– A woman came in asking if I still sell the Wet Brush (the BEST brush EVER for tangles…just sayin’). I let her know we do and walked her over to the display. “I use the Wet Brush on my dog. He loves it so much I want one too…but it can’t be green, because his is green and I don’t want him mistaking my brush for his.”.

– A woman came in looking for hair chalk. I showed her the Color Bug by Kevin Murphy and the Pigment Pencils by Joico Structure. I let her know that they are a temporary color and will wash out in one to two shampoo’s. “If it lasts until I wash it out, that isn’t very temporary – I only wash my hair once a week.”

– I now know that there is at least one man who uses travel size hair dryers because they are the perfect size to use “south of the border” ….his pun…not mine…did not need the visual.

– A woman came in demanding I only show her products that are not tested on animals. She was wearing leather sandals & carrying a leather tote (I used to run the Ladies dept. at a shoe store and I can spot leather shoes at 100 paces).

– A boy and his mother came in looking for hair chalk. As I was showing them my selection and explaining how to use it, the boy was interrupting his mother, being rude, hitting the display and even our plant. When we got to the counter, as I was ringing through the hair chalk purchase,(a purchase he did not deserve, in my opinion), the boy saw our OPI nail swatches and shouted “Hey! Are these fake nails?” to which I answered “Oh no. Those are the nails from little boys who are rude to their Mother’s in my shop.”. ….Have to admit…that was fun.

– Box color is not for “your box” …enough said.

– The hair dryers are blowing, all of my stylists have a client in their chair. The woman at the front counter says “Oh…so you have a Salon.”. “Yes we do, would you like to make an appointment?” I ask. “Is it a real Salon?” she asked. Before I answered, I reminded myself not to show it on my face, “I’m sorry. What do you mean by a real Salon?”. “Oh, you know. A real Salon – you hear about these fake ones that open then close like a day later. You can never be to careful!”. She has been buying her hairspray from me for 4 years. …I left it at that…I had nothing.

….and the Piece de Resistance…drum roll please…a middle aged woman came in – hey, I can say middle aged, I am going to be 43. So, a middle aged woman, wearing a micro mini corduroy skirt, I mean micro mini skirt came in looking for her color. I walked over to the shelf and helped her find it. I asked her if she had enough peroxide at home to which she said, “I better get some.”. As I bent down to get it for her, she bent down as well. Well ladies and gents, yours truly was visually assaulted for Miss. MicroMini was not wearing any underwear. Going commando. Sans gitch. If that Took. It. Out. Seinfeld episode was about a woman, Elaine would have said “Put. It. Out.”….oh…and she needed a trip to her esthetician… enough said.

 

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Beauty, health and wellness, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, writing

Tales of Truth – 18th edition

Gather ’round ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, it is once again time for that girl in the red coat’s Tales of Truth. A full moon is not set to arrive for a few weeks so I cannot blame the following antics on our lunar companion. The warm weather is upon us and the humidex is on the rise, so that may be a factor, or maybe people have simply gone bat shit crazy.

 

– I was helping a woman select her shampoo when another woman came into the shop. I said hello and let her know I would be with her shortly. She told me “I’m just looking”. After I finished with my customer, I walked over to her and asked if she was finding what she was looking for to which I was told “I said I was just looking!”, so I went back to unpacking my orders. As she passed the counter I heard a sigh and turned to ask her if there was something she needed to which she told me “well, yes, there is, but no one is helping me so I am leaving.”.

– a woman called to ask me why I didn’t answer the phone at 8:00 a.m. when she called. I let her know the shop opens at 9:30 a.m. to which she said “you still haven’t answered my question”.

– a woman complained that the flat iron spray I suggested was “Shit and was ruining her hair, not protecting it”. *Educational tip – flat iron spray is to be applied to dry hair – not applied to the flat iron itself.

– A woman came into the shop asking if I could help her find the Goldwell shampoo she uses because she left her glasses at home. As I came from behind the counter to help her she let me know “please don’t mind the smell, I just had some moles burned off.”. …trust me…I wish I was making this shit up.

– A woman asked me if she could buy  the travel size hair dryer even if she doesn’t travel.

– “Do you sell toe nail polish?” – I am asked this more than you want to know

– I had another gentleman ask me if it was possible to wax his own balls – actually, he called them his “little buddies”. …Gilligan’s Island will never be the same for yours truly.

– A product I usually carry was out of stock. My customer wanted to know where else she could buy it. I didn’t know, but offered to give her the phone number of the shops I thought may carry her product. I was told “my customer service was for shit” because I wouldn’t call all the other shop’s in town for her to see if they had what she wanted.

– A couple came in asking about our hair trimmers. I showed them our selection of clippers and trimmers and let them know that the Wahl Peanut is our best seller. It is great for cutting, trimming and outlining. The woman turned to her gent and said “Look! A peanut to use on your peanut!”. …I need a raise.

 

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Beauty, communication, Hair Care, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Tales of Truth – 17th edition

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, gather ’round for the 17th edition of That Girl in the Red Coat’s tales of truth. I know that these tales are quite popular and are a fan favorite. I am beginning to wonder if you, my followers are sending people into my shop to see if their escapades and demands will make their way into my latest edition…sweet baby Jesus, I hope so.

A woman came into the shop asking if I sold hair clippers. I walked her over to our selection of clippers, explained their differences and their prices. Once I was finished she asked me “What kind of hair can I trim with these?”. I took a deep breath and asked “What hair do you want to trim?” as I silently told myself not to show it on my face as I wondered where I put the hand sanitizer. “Oh, the usual hair. My boyfriend’s hair, my hair, my pussycat’s hair. I like to give him a new spring hairdo every year.”. …thank god, she added cat to that sentence.

The phone rings and I answer with my standard greeting. “Yeah, Hi. Do you sell eyelashes?”. I let her know that we do retail false eyelashes and that the price ranges depending on if she wants acrylic or human hair eyelashes. “Oh my god! How do you get human eyelashes?!? Are they pulled out of people’s eyes and sold to the public?”. – I actually stood there, at the counter, took the phone away from my ear and stared at it.

We offer a great selection of flatirons. A woman came in because she needed to replace her flatiron. I showed her our selection and explained the differences in plate widths, which models had universal voltage and which were ceramic or titanium plates. She asked me “Why are there different widths to the plates?”. I let her know that it usually comes down to personal preference and that the 1 inch plate is the most popular because you can achieve a curl with it. “Why call it a flat iron if you can curl with it? It should be called a curling iron if you ask me!”.

A woman came in wanting to return her hairspray, slamming the bottle onto the counter, complaining that her hairspray wasn’t holding her style at all and that we had sold her crap. “Look at how wet and flat my hair is!”. Before I could look at the bottle she complained that her “leave in conditioner was a disappointment too!”. I took the bottle off the counter, turned it around to look at the label, gave it back to her and let her know that the bottle she wanted to return was her leave in conditioner and that she may have gotten the products mixed up. “Hmmpt….maybe that’s why my hair felt sticky when I was blowdrying.”.

A woman asked me what nail polish color was a good color. I let her know that the Spring collections were offering pastels and brights this year. So then she says “What color will I like?” I ask her “What is your favorite color?”. I guess that was the wrong question. “Look, I asked you what color would I like! Why won’t you tell me what color I would like?!?!”. I picked up the most popular pink shade and showed it to her, to which she told me “I don’t like pink.”.

The phone rings and before I can finish my greeting I hear “Yeah, I like colored my hair and it is kind of like red and gold, but more orange and kind of like yellow. Do you sell toner to fix it?”. I let her know that it would be best to go to a Salon and have them fix it for her, especially because I can’t see her hair to which she replied “I just told you the color it was.”.

With the temperatures rising and the days getting longer, those who have not ventured out in many months have decided to come out of their winter’s slumber and come into the shop with certain inquiries and questions. Once again, I cannot stress this enough…these are based on real events. I couldn’t make this shit up.

– Can nail polish remover be used on finger nails and toe nails?

– I used my foot cream on my hands. Do I need to see my doctor?

– Do I need to comb my husband’s back hair before I trim it?

– Can I use the glue from the dollar store on my false eyelashes?

– If my son uses my color shampoo will it color his hair?

– Will the scent of this hairspray bother my husband’s allergies?

– My car is in direct sunlight. Will my hairspray blow up while I am driving home?

– Do you color your hair so people won’t look at the scar on your neck? – this gem happened today

Last but never least, the piece de resistance…. A gentleman came into the shop inquiring about our hair removal products. He told me he had been going to someone for his “removal needs” but thought he could save some time and money having his own supplies at home. I showed him our selection of waxes and explained the difference between hard wax and cream waxes, which needed strips and which ones didn’t. “I have my girlfriend to help me with my back. I do have a question for you though. Is it possible for me to wax my own balls?”. Yep. His exact words. I looked him straight in the eye and told him that I wouldn’t suggest it, that it was possible and that there will be blood. “Maybe my girlfriend would do it for me” he said with  a wink and a smile and a nudge. I shit you not, a nudge. I just walked back  to the counter, rang through his purchase and wished him luck. …..a week later he came back to pick up a product his girlfriend had on hold. I knew who he was and what he had done. I rang through his purchase, wished him  a pleasant evening and that is when he quite proudly shared that “It worked and hardly any blood!”.

 

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Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Tales of Truth Part 11

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, gather ’round for another installment of Tales of Truth. Last week was the week of the full moon and Friday the 13th., so you can imagine what yours truly got to hear and got to see. As always, the following tales are based on real events…sigh.

– I hear the chirp of the Salon’s door chime. A regular customer comes up to the counter and says she needs my opinion. I say “Sure! What can I help you with?”. She proceeds to come behind the counter, lifting her skirt as she walks. I stopped her dead in her tracks, put my hand up and said “You can keep your skirt down. Let me guess…you want to ask me if red bumps after waxing is normal” to which she looked at me like I was Dionne Warwick and I was her new psychic bff. “YES! How did you know without seeing?”. ….double sigh

– A woman came in to buy her hairspray and she was concerned about leaving the hairspray in the car as she ran errands because it was such a hot day. I reassured her that if she put it in the trunk, it should be fine. She was quite relieved. As we were waiting for the debit machine to connect, she became a little anxious. “Can you hurry this up? I left my dog in the car!”. …wait for it…there you go.

– We carry products that are vegan and certified organic. I had a customer ask me if they were packaged on a farm. I let her know that they weren’t packaged on a farm, they were packaged in a factory. She then began to tell me that there was no way the products could be organic because they weren’t packaged on a farm.

– I have a dish of candies at our front desk for our customers and clients, to add a little sweetness to their day. A woman asked me if the candies were free of charge. I let her know that they were and to help herself. She couldn’t believe that I would just give away candy so she left a quarter on the counter “just in case I was trying to pull one over on her”.

– Later that same day I had a woman ask if the candies were free, I let her know that they were and to please help herself. She dug through the bowl and took all the red candies, 10 in total. How do I know it was 10? She counted out loud…people, I shit you not…this really happens.

– From time to time companies will offer a bonus size hairspray that retails for the same price of the regular size bottle. The bonus size can be up to 300 ml more than the regular retail size bottle – it’s like getting two for the price of one. I had a woman get down right angry that all I had in stock were the bonus size cans. She didn’t like them and thought they looked tacky. I let her know that although she may not like the look of the bottle it was a great savings. Her exact words to me were “Who are they to decide that I want to save money?”.

– As I was ringing through a purchase, my customer complimented me on my hair. I thanked her and let her know that our stylists in our Salon do my color for me. “Oh, is that why whenever I come here I hear blow dryers and the chatter?” …I just smiled and handed her a Salon price list. As she was leaving she looked back and said “Thank you! This makes so much sense now.”.

– A woman came in looking for nail polish. I took her over to our OPI and China Glaze displays. When she noticed my sign “please do not try on polishes, please ask for assistance with the swatches” she remarked that she couldn’t believe people would actually open up products and try them out. She chose her polish and said she was just going to look around. Not ten seconds later do I hear “ppffffftttt” – I came around the corner to her trying two different hairsprays, one on each side of her head “Oh…I am just trying them out. I just want to see which one holds better”.

…triple sigh.

 

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

Today’s tale is short and sweet, like yours truly. After you read it, you will see why. Quite honestly, I find myself at a loss for words. I am all about new techniques and trends. Some are so cool I cannot wait to try them. Others, well, I will leave it for others to try and enlighten me afterwards. My aim is always to educate and enlighten so here goes.

So as I was surfing the web this morning I came across a new trend that has begun in England and is making it’s way across the pond. Downstairs Dye job. Yes, you read that right, Downstairs Dye job. (For more info. check out http://www.NYMAG.com  The Cut). It seems that women not only hate the pesky grays popping up on their heads, it is becoming an issue south of the border (and I don’t mean Mexico). I never realized this was an issue…gives “my roots are showing” a whole new meaning, and visual for that matter.

I know. Right now you have just crossed your legs and said “ouch” aloud. I know I did. The thought took  me back to the day I accidentally used Kleenex with menthol when the toilet paper roll was empty (kids). Let me tell ya…you NEVER forget that sensation. From the info. I have read, you can uncross your legs. It seems the bleach used is similar to the bleach used to lighten facial hair, and mixed with certain oils that don’t sting. Your southern belle can be dyed to match your northern ‘do. You can also choose a design for artistic flare; a heart, a star, an eagle, a beaver …couldn’t help myself.

So now not only can your shoes match your bag, the carpet upstairs can match or compliment your carpet downstairs. ….that’s all I got.

Gray coverage?

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

Alright….where’s the camera

Ever have one of those days that you find yourself looking over your shoulder, looking up and down in search of the camera crew and Suzanne Somers to jump out and say “Smile! You’re on candid camera!”. Today I was praying for such an exclamation that never came. Sad but true, the following tales are true and they all happened to yours truly today.

The phone rings. “Is it safe to get my hair colored?” is the question posed to me. “I’m sorry.” I say, “why do you ask if it is safe to get your hair colored?” to which she answers “I read in the paper that someone in Florida died while getting their hair colored!”. (10 bucks the “paper” started with an N and ended with an R)…by the way, it’s 9:40 a.m.. The shop has been open 10 minutes.

A woman comes into the shop with a can of hairspray. “I bought this here and it is defective!”. So I ask her what seems to be the issue with the hairspray. (from time to time aerosol cans don’t spray properly and we will gladly exchange them). “The issue is it sounds funny every time I use it.”. I shit you not people, it is what she said. So I take the can and spray it a few times and it sounds like hairspray being sprayed out of an aerosol can. I tell her “It is spraying evenly and not clogging up, I can’t see a defect with the product.” to which she says “well, I don’t like the sound it makes, maybe another will sound better”. …it’s 10:30 a.m..

A woman came in the store to tell me in great detail about how crappy her life is and how she can’t seem to get rid of the pesky rash she has “down there” ever since she had a brazilian wax….maybe I should re think the whole “how are you today” greeting….it’s 11:30 a.m.

I had a woman complain about having to pay retail prices when she is a hairdresser, so I offer the address to the wholesaler’s in our area and she proceeds to explain “well…I’m not really a hairdresser, I never got my license but I did go to school, but I never finished, but I still do hair, so I think I deserve wholesale prices”….that’s like saying you’re an E.R. doctor because you took first aid in the Girl Guides.

Last but certainly not least, a lovely couple came in about 20 minutes before closing. The woman told me she was looking for wax for hair removal. I showed her our selection and asked if she needed hard wax or cream wax. I never should have asked. It was at this moment that her Romeo was at her side and they explained,quite joyously that they prefer hard wax because they give each other brazilian waxes. Let’s add this to the ever growing list of things I really don’t need to know.

So there you have it, a glimpse into the daily happenings of That girl in the red coat. This is why I don’t watch much reality T.V., I get enough of it at work.

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

It was a quiet day at the shop today. It’s January and mother nature couldn’t make up her mind  which outfit to wear…Parka? Winter boots? Rubber boots? Trench coat?…so she went with all four.Today went from snow to freezing rain to rain to imminent thunderstorms. It seems that mother nature wasn’t the only one today who couldn’t make up her mind or the only one in a mood for that matter. I was going to make today’s tale another installment of the ever popular “tales of truth” series as my first few customers were so generous as to give me some awesome material, but it was the last customer I served that changed my mind. She belittled her husband. She made fun of him. She went on and on about his feet and their cracks and calluses and ended her monologue with “Hhmmppt. Men. No personal hygiene…what do you expect.”.

I am always hearing women complain about men and their lack of personal hygiene. First things first ladies, lets get one thing straight.There is a difference between personal hygiene and personal maintenance, so maybe, just maybe you need to ease up a little. Here is a little list to help clarify;

Brushing teeth = Personal hygiene. Manscaping = Personal maintenance.

Washing hair & all 2000 parts = Personal hygiene. Keeping side burns the exact shape = Personal maintenance.

Washing hands = Personal hygiene. Getting a manicure  = Personal maintenance.

The reason for today’s tale is to help out our gents. Too many of you are out right mean to the men in your lives. Yeah…I said it. I know, I know, I can hear some of you now, “She’s always sticking up for the men!”. Correction. Not to sound all “Norma  Rae”, I am standing up for beauty, in all forms , for all people. My tales may from time to time reflect the issues of our gents because in the business of beauty, they are either being neglected or ridiculed. It’s true. Think about it. How many times have you heard or said “Isn’t that cute?!?” when you hear a man has gotten a pedicure….and women wonder why men don’t keep up with their personal maintenance. If that is how you treat him, you are lucky it is only his feet he has let go.

After my customer had finished what she thought was a witty and well thought sentence, I let her know that many men come into my shop for help. I told her “They come into my shop because we make them feel comfortable. We understand that they have faced ridicule and that is not what we are about. We also know that, for the most part, men don’t know about personal maintenance because no one ever taught them.”. Then we had a staring contest, her and I. After about 10 seconds, she said “Never thought about that.”. I gave her a few samples and wrote down the instructions on how to use the products she purchased. (by the way…a foot paddle to exfoliate the callus and Gehwol Lipidro cream are an  AWESOME combination….OH! and for cracked heels the Gehwol Salve for Cracked Skin is terrific!).

Guess what?! Men, just like us, want to look good, and feel good. Just like us, they want to look desirable to their better half, be it a man or a woman. Just like us, getting a second glance from a stranger puts a spring in their step. Did you ever stop to think that maybe your gent wants to get his back waxed so he can feel comfortable walking with you hand in hand on the beach – not because he has a mistress. Sure, there are some real asses out there, it doesn’t mean that when your gent starts taking pride in his appearance he has a bit on the side – would you want him to think that of you every time you applied lipstick?

Seriously ladies. Be nice. It is really that simple. Treat your gents as you want to be treated.  As women, we are always preaching about equality. Well ladies, careful what you wish for, because if you are one of those women who mock and ridicule the men in your lives, guess what is coming your way.

Gentlemen and…ladies?