Salon Etiquette 101: Hair Color Hate!


There’s nothing better than the joy and excitement you feel leaving the salon with freshly colored tresses, knowing the hours (and dollars) you spent in the process were all worth it. But not every color appointment has a happy ending. Sometimes, as your hair’s being dried, you catch a glimpse of your new color in the mirror, and (gasp!) what you feel is the opposite of joy. Then the panic sets in—you’ve got a good 15 to 20 minutes until the blow-dryer stops, and you’ll forced to speak. You know your colorist will be expecting gratitude and enthusiasm, but you hate what you’re looking at. What do you do?

Keep reading for the best course of action when your dye job turns out all wrong!

A client wanted the platinum blonde hair similar to Kim K's look. Silver Tresses is what she thought she wanted but.......

"When I looked in the mirror once the stylist finished, I had a panic attack. I thought I had ruined my hair forever.” 

But of course, she didn’t. 

That is the typical thought that happen when you see that the color you thought you were going to have is not what you ended up with. The so-called “disaster” was fixed in a single return salon trip. Now here is how to avoid that.

…First, build in time for a consultation.


If you want a major color change, or even a minor one, good stylists encourage clients to come in for a consultation separate from the dye job. This way there’s time to ask lots of questions without feeling pressured. It also ensures they’re 100% on the same page about the final results. “Sometimes clients will say ‘ashy blonde’ but show me a photo of golden blonde. We have to communicate about what you want, what will look good, and how much time it will take to achieve your desired results.” If you’re going from dyed-red hair to platinum blonde, for example, the right process — one that allows for the least amount of damage to your hair — could take a month and mean multiple visits. Also will mean some very bright orange or yellow colors in between.  Just an FYI!!!

Next here is how to handle a "disaster" situation.

You hate your hair and want it dyed back IMMEDIATELY!  Possible?


Kinda. In our example the stylist was able to strip the gray toner from her hair in one day and replenish what she took out with the protein treatment, but that’s not always the case — it depends on the color you dyed your hair. If you went from blonde to black or red, or used henna, your hair colorist can take it down a notch right away, but will likely suggest you come back in two weeks to a month for round two. (If you’ve been dying your hair dark for a while, it can take even longer to strip the color down.) “You need to give your hair a chance to breathe.”

Don’t feel awkward about saying, “This isn’t what I wanted.”


It’s better for me to fix your hair right away and make you happy rather than have you live with it and not say anything. The people who keep it inside start to hate it even more, then they hate life and then they hate me. If you don’t like your hair, let me know. You’re not going to offend me at all. The best thing about color, the reason I love it, is because you can always fix it, always tweak it, and it’s often a subtle change that makes all the difference.

biggest rule of them all is.... Tell the truth about your hair history!!!!

Now in order to avoid all of the previous situations the best thing to do is TELL THE TRUTH!!! OK we understand you are embarrassed that you were coloring your own hair and had to put 6 different box colors on it to get it the perfect shade of "whatever" it is now. But if you neglect to tell the stylist then we will find out the HARD way and you will have a bad color that will take way longer to correct than it would have if only you had told the truth! Maybe you were scarred by a bad set of highlights. Or maybe you cheated on your colorist. Either way, it's better to come clean because your hair's health and history can affect which formula your colorist chooses. If there's already color in your hair or it has been chemically straightened, we need to know!!! 

Now go forth and get thee your unicorn hair but make sure you telleth your stylist what is there to starteth with!! And remember sometimes you can't get that goal on the first try and may have to do more than one trip to get thee, thine unicorn tresses!!!