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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

the post where i reveal my inner snobbery

I spent the better part of last week contemplating how I could talk my family of 6 into eating macaroni and cheese for a month so I could afford hair extensions. Well, not out loud, but in my head. I decided their therapy cost for doing this would far outweigh the cost of the extensions. And because I'm careful with my money, I decided to forgo the actual conversation. And extensions.

But I have had some hair dilemmas since moving to the city. Well, actually my whole life. I'm really confused as to why God did not give me natural blond hair, when obviously that is really the best color for me. I have been coloring my hair since college and finding that perfect shade of buttery blond is a challenge. Can I get a witness?

When my first son was born, he had the most gorgeous shade of blond hair. I used to take him with me to get my hair done for a visual. I would sit him on my lap and tell the stylist, "See this? Put this on my head. Thank you." But now his hair has turned dark and I can't do that anymore.

I tried a new colorist on the upper east side yesterday. No one recommended her to me. Well, the Internet did and that is almost a real person, right? I had issues as soon as I walked in the shop. Allow me to share.

1. They told me to go hang up my coat. What? You're not going to do that for me? I need to feel a little pampered.

2. They did not offer me a beverage. Umm...Hello? Its after 12 o'clock and that salon down the street serves wine. But really, some water would have even been nice.

3. The staff had Chinese takeout for lunch. The entire salon was filled with Kung Pow Chicken aroma. Mix that with a little bleach, shampoo, and hairspray...not exactly aromatherapy, people. But I did decide to incorporate stir fry into our dinner lineup this week.

OK. As if I don't already sound like snob, I'm going to go ahead and add the last one. The clincher for me.

4. SHE ASKED ME TO HELP HER BY HANDING HER THE FOILS. I'm not sure why some stylists do this? Really, I don't. It is one of my biggest pet peeves. It makes me have flashbacks to my youth where I'm at the kitchen table handing my mother the perm rods as she does yet another perm to my stick-straight hair.

Note to all styists: I am a mother of 4. The salon experience is supposed to be relaxing for me. A place to recharge. A place to catch up on Brangelina and my other celebrity friends. I can't do that if I'm helping you do my own hair, right? Plus, if I'm your new assistant, I'd really enjoy a discount.

So, I am on the search yet again for a colorist in the city that won't cost more than my rent each month and will provide a tad more pampering. Thinking of starting a prayer chain for this.

What about you? What is your worst salon experience?

19 comments:

Brenda said...

Getting a perm sitting at a kitchen table in a friend's mom's house. Handing her the rods, while she put the perm solution onto my hair as she rolled the rods. This resulted in my hair being soaked in solution for almost two hours before being washed out. The end result of my perm? Super curly ringlets all over my head, a week later pieces of hair breaking off, and a month later my hair turning orange from the iron in our water being soaked up by my dry, lifeless hair!

This was 16 years ago. But I am with you, Michelle! Going to a salon is a treat for me and my time to relax. I don't enjoy sitting there holding foil, being expected to be "on and ready" to hand her each piece as she needs it. I want to be pampered and get the whole experience that I paid for!

2nd worst experience - having the girl color my hair first, using two bottles of color because I had long hair, then chopping 7 inches off of it all the way around, with all that very expensive hair freshly colored hair laying on the floor that I had to pay for!

Katie said...

A friend of mine referred me to your blog and I just had to tell you that I love it! It's in my reader and have been recommending it to others. In fact, my cousin lives there and I sent her this link to see if she recommended anyone!

nickernoodle said...

I'm with you Michelle. I hate it when you go somewhere and have to help the person performing the services and then still have to pay for them!!!! I go to a fantastic girl that massages my head when she washes it......always has a Diet Coke waiting for me.......and always hangs my coat up for me. Good luck finding someone and I wouldn't trust the internet this time!!!! ;o)

Meredith said...

I feel the same way about wanting to relax with my People magazine (won't buy it but always dig for it in hair/nail salons). I don't like the chatty stylist, manicurist, etc. I have two kids who talk my ears off all day. I'm here to escape that and feel a littl pampered! I'm with you on the extensions-if I had money to spare, I would so have the long, thick, shiny hair I was meant to have.

Anonymous said...

I am a Hairdressor and I hate the practice of having the customer hand things to the operator. In all my years of work I never put the customer in that position. Shame on her!

Teresa said...

I would LOVE extensions....but my family is not up for eating Ramen noodles for the month either. Bummer! My stylist is excellent and so honest....in a good way. :) Good luck on your search.

Elizabeth said...

My worse salon experience was going to the very fancy Frederick Fekkai (or is it Feccai? or is it Fuckii?) and having a "blow-out," before a big benefit, suggested by a good friend. I was seven months pregnant, surrounded by The Beautiful People who were all wearing some kind of variation of Burberry (scarf, wallet, shoes, bags, etc.) and my hair was so huge when I walked out of there that between my belly and my hair, I couldn't see or barely walk. And it cost $150.

Taylor said...

My worst experience was in NYC as well! My mom and I were there for a fancy girls weekend, we wanted gorgeous 'blow-outs' like the stars, only to get here (after stopping our afternoon of shopping to cab to the other side of the city) to wait for 45 minutes to tell us they had no recollection of our appointments (even though they called us the day before to confirm!) and that we could wait a hour till someone finished, but they were sure who or what kind of time they would have!

Talk about a quick exit...I think we ate Indian and spent that more money on clothes!

http://curlyinthecity-tek.blogspot.com/

Gayla said...

My worst was when I asked my awesome stylist to do my color the exact awesome shade of auburn that he had made it 6 weeks before... and I walked out of there looking like Lucy's completely insane and much less talented little sister. Oh, and he was sent to drug rehab the next week. So he was most likely high on cocaine while coloring my hair. Fun!

Jennifer said...

Hi! I've read and enjoyed your blog for a while now, but have never commented. I couldn't resist this one!

My worst salon experience was the morning of my sister's wedding, for which I was the maid of honor. The girl styling my hair had just gotten married two months earlier and had started the annulment process as soon as she got back from her honeymoon. Needless to say, she was a little bitter towards weddings in general, though we didn't know any of this until after she ruined my hair. I went to her with my beautiful curly hair down, dry and non-frizzy. All I wanted was an elegant updo with my natural curl showing through. She proceeded to BRUSH my hair, and of course, brushed it into a frizzy mess. My hair looked like the hair of a bad 80's prom queen by the time she was done. I haaaated it but had no time to redo it before the ceremony. I was mortified to walk down the aisle! The crazy thing was I had personally seen some curly updo's that this girl had done and they were gorgeous - that's why we scheduled me with her!

I know someday I will laugh about this, but my sister's wedding was just this last summer, and I'm not quite there yet.

Jonathan said...

Hmm. I cut my own hair, unless I'm in a hurry. "#2 on top, fade to 0 on the sides, please." Five minutes later I'm on the street looking for food. You ladies have it rough.

dkzody said...

I have the BEST colorist in the world, or at least in my part of the world. I am stopped every where, even in San Francisco, and asked who does my hair or what color it is. So many people think it's something they can get out of a box and all they need is the magic name. Nah, it is a special formula of numbers my fabulous hairdresser mixes. I have decided that even when we move permanently to SF that I am coming back to Fresno to get my hair done.

Anonymous said...

Michelle, have you heard of the Aveda Training Institute in Soho? OK, so it's a school, but they are run by Aveda and use Aveda products (nice if you like the products). Anyway the cons are you are putting your hair into the hands of a trainee (scary for some) but I have never had a problem here (they are supervised, and this is the last month of their training, and most of them already have salon experience but want to have the Aveda training). I've been going on/off since 2002 whenever I need something inexpensive. It also sometimes takes a couple hours and might take a few weeks to get an appt. Pros - your bill will be less than 3 digits (even with cut and color); the service is generally good. They also have great tea (recently I've had to ask for it, but it's good). And I don't think I was handing off foils. I haven't been there in a year, because it's a bit out of the way, and I'm tending to an infant, but if you can have a morning to yourself, I think it's worthwhile. GL

Heidi Jo said...

extensions??

teresa, michelle....have you seen kate gosselin? i'm just askin'.

Tamera Ford said...

I love that you want extensions! I was just thinking about them myself...drasted hair grows about as fast as southerners drive on a sunny day! My mom is a hair stylist and I have seen it all. I must say, now that getting my hair done is a mini vacation instead of an opportunity for my mother to try out the newest fad hair style (thank you Dorthy Hamil and Farrah) I definitly appreciate being offered a coke and a head massage! You should send a sweet note to Tabitha Coffey of Salon Take Over maybe she is looking for another Salon to snap into shape! Consider me officially on the prayer chain!

3 Peanuts said...

I am with you on eery single point. I want to be pampered too. UGH...I will never hand the foils again ever.

Anonymous said...

Tracy at Butterfly Salon in Flatiron-- she is amazing. I have gotten compliments from random strangers. They will serve you wine at any time of day, too! :) Total pampering.

www.butterflystudiosalon.com

Helen said...

I highly recommend Shear Bliss on 28th and 3rd. I was their first client when they opened on the ground level of my building and I have never looked back. The owner Lana did my hair for my wedding and all my bridesmaids. They are like family now and by NYC standards very affordable. check them out!

mn said...

Hi, I've read your blog some since you moved and have been delighted by the way you have enjoyed discovering the city for yourself & your family! I moved away almost 2 years ago & miss it terribly. But, I can suggest a salon for you.
I have my own share of bad blonding and highlighting stories in New York, but finally, after about 3 years I found the one who got it right. Try Teresa at Yann Varin Salon- the one on Lex & 75th. I found their prices moderate. The cheaper salons- well, you found out what those are like. Yann Varin's not a steal, but at the same time, it's not top-tier priced either. More importantly, you'll very likely love it and get your money's worth. And they are nice. And it's small. No one will ask you to hand them foils or get your own drink. Good luck!

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