How to Deal with a Bad Haircut

Hair salon client
Photo: Istockphoto
We can all relate to a bad haircut. Most of us have experienced the sheer agony of watching someone snip away our hair into some sort of Chia Pet formation. It's an awful feeling, one that makes us believe there is no way we can step out of the salon and join the rest of mankind with that hair. A few weeks later, the memory haunts us, but the hair has grown out enough to look presentable... no more hats, clips, or wigs (in some cases).
I have had this experience. What was even worse was the fact that a friend cut it. I wanted just a trim! However, what I got was a four-inch cut that rested just below my ears. Not only was it too short, it was uneven. When I mentioned this to my friend, she had a simple solution: "Just walk around with your head tilted." I gave her an evil glare and told her that it would be best for her own health if she removed herself from my house.
So, the question is... How do you tactfully deal with a bad haircut? I asked this question to two people who recently endured this type of tragedy. Friend A is a male and recently, longer hair has been a trend among younger guys. They feathered back their long bangs, which gave them a "retro look." Friend A had the perfect retro style, but was trying to clean it up a bit for a more sleek and stylish look. He took a picture to his stylist, showing the "do" he wanted. However, when he left the salon, he looked nothing like his picture. She thinned out his hair on the bottom and left it fuller on top. He immediately placed a hat over his head, grumbled all the way home, and missed work that day in fear of becoming a laughing stock.
He said nothing to his stylist that day; he simply paid for his cut without including a tip. The next day, however, he felt very wronged. He knew he was displeased with his cut and felt it was unfair that he had to pay for it. He returned to the salon, explained the situation, and they gladly fixed his hair free of charge. It is still not the style he wanted, but at least he does not have to hide out from the rest of society.
Friend B is a girl with a shoulder-length bob that had grown out and needed layers for a more lively look. She had also taken a picture to her stylist. However, when the stylist kept cutting and cutting, Friend B knew something was going wrong. This became more evident when the stylist asked one of her associates to help her. Friend B's anger grew more intense. Finally, when the stylist was finished, Friend B had a haircut that was totally unlike the picture she had brought with her.
The stylist asked Friend B how she felt about her hair. To which she replied, "It's *&%*#$&* messed up." Friend B chose to clip her hair to hide the shame. A few days later, she felt guilty for cursing at the stylist and returned to the shop. She apologized to the stylist, who apologized in return and offered her another cut to fix the first one. However, considering the stylist's previous work, Friend B declined the offer.
In both situations, neither of the individuals initially dealt with the situation correctly. However, sometimes we get so angry or are in shock at the sight we see that our first instinct is to yell, curse, or flee the premises before we hurt someone. Stylists aren't always perfect. All of us make mistakes and have off days. It is critical for us to remember that when dealing with them, it is important that we do our part in order to achieve the best results for our hair.
Tips to get the best results out of a haircut
Images via Canva
Here are a few tips:
1. Show them pictures and explain verbally what you would like your haircut to look like.
2. Don't keep your eyes closed when they cut your hair. If it doesn't seem like they're going in the right direction, make sure to express your concerns.
3. Tactfully let them know how you feel about your hair before leaving the salon.
See also: How to get a good haircut