The Biggest Mistake Hairdressers Make

Jun 08, 2022

Do you like the title? 

Did it get your attention?

That was the point. But since we have your attention, we would like to share what we consider the biggest mistake that hairdressers make.

Over-educating our clients.

That's it, that's the mistake. 

We didn't need to write a blog with sprawling text to make this minor point. 

Over-education is the product of big beauty brands telling hairdressers that the best way to sell products is to educate clients. Then they told us that the best way to up-sell was to educate clients. Want to add on an add-on? Great, educate the client. "Show them why they need it," "Let them smell the product," and "explain to them the health benefits."

Stop doing all of this. Immediately.

We are all inundated with unnecessary and unsolicited "education" through social media, commercials, pop-ups (are those still a thing?), and more. 

As hairdressers, we can do our part to stop polluting the minds of our clients with more education that inevitably shames them into purchasing products they do not need. We need to trust that our clients can make their own decisions based on their own research and questioning. Asking hairdressers to be responsible for this type of "educating" is just pressure from product companies to sell more retail.

Let us be clear; there is nothing wrong with sharing products that you love and talking about why you love them. There is no issue if you are coming to the rescue with something the client needs, but it is not our job to prescribe products. That is something big beauty brands have been telling salon owners and hairdressers for years to get them to sell more retail. Our job is to do great hair and to be a resource for clients to a certain degree, but we have been taught to take it too far.

When we get on a plane, we do not need or want a lesson in how the plane works. We don't care, we don't have time, and we want to get to our final destination.

When we go to the pharmacist, we don't need or want to know how our medication is made. We want the prescribed medication, and we will be on our way.

When we go to the bakery, we don't need all of the details of how they baked the cake. We want to pick it up and tell our friends it's organic and gluten-free.

Symptoms that you have been over-educating your clients:

  1. They start to question your color formula's
  2. They say things like, "I don't think I need the toner this time."
  3. They start to challenge your expertise because that's not what their other stylist told them.
  4. They stopped shampooing their hair... entirely... because they heard it's "bad" for you.

Feel free to add your own to the list.

The point is that over-educating clients does more harm than good. They did not pay 20k+ to get a cosmetology license; we did. We do not need to waste our time, breath, and money attempting to teach civilians everything there is to know about their hair and the world of products.

If clients want a class in hair education, they can sign up for local cosmetology classes like the rest of us.