Sept/Oct Magazine

Inside the Garage

Well This is Awkward


By Jeri Stauss

There are times I look forward to going to the salon more than I look forward to Fridays. There’s nothing better than walking in for your appointment and being handed a glass of wine while the stylist transforms you from feeling exhausted and dull to rejuvenated and sparkly! And that head massage at the shampoo bowl? Come on, that’s worth a visit alone! But, like watching Fifty Shades of Grey with your grandmother, the salon visit also has its fair share of awkward moments. Here are a few of my favorites:

1.) Awkward Conversation

If you’re anything like me, you schedule your hair appointments for the moment you leave work. All you want to do is sit in the salon chair and crush candy for the next hour, but you don’t want to come off as rude.  So begins the awkward salon conversation. We both know you don’t REALLY care about my “big plans for the weekend,” but in order to avoid awkward silence, I’ll continue to babble on about all the exciting Netflix binging I’ll be doing.  Let’s not forget that moment when the hair dryer starts, and you’re not sure if you should stop talking or continue to yell over the sound.

2.) The Product Sale

Oh no…I see you emulsifying product in your hand and I smell the amazing scent that only salon professional products possess. OF COURSE I’d love to take that product home with me, but I’m already trying to hide this $100 salon bill from my husband. Then, to top it off, you tell me the product will give my hair Blake Lively-esque shine. There’s the dagger. Just put it on my tab.

3.) Ears

Everything from the comb catching on an earring to that inevitable shot of water to the ear at the shampoo bowl... Occasionally you’ll get to experience that special bonding moment when the stylist puts the towel over her finger and sticks it in your ear to absorb the water. That moment isn’t fun for any parties involved, but it does beat the alternative of sitting through your salon visit with a pool of water chilling in your ear.

4.) Pictures

What you just did to my hair doesn’t even remotely resemble the picture I brought you. I wanted “The Rachel” and you gave me “The Chandler.”

5.) Pedicures

The pedicure was always doomed to have its fair share of awkward moments. There’s something inherently uncomfortable about another person spending so much time with your feet.  My personal favorite is the realization that it’s been “a while” since last shaving your legs. And then making a feeble attempt to justify it by mumbling something about “being a single person in the winter months.”

There’s also the moment the pumice stone starts grazing the most ticklish spot on your foot. What started off as a relaxing foot massage has now turned into a few seconds of making your body as rigid as possible to avoid jerking your foot away from the nail technician and kicking her in the face.

6.) Is this going to cost me?

Let me preface this by saying there’s nothing I appreciate more than a stylist who recommends a service for me that I didn’t originally schedule in my appointment. I love when she tells me which additional color or treatment services my hair could benefit from. The awkward part is wondering not only if it will cost extra, but exactly how much. Since I’d rather not risk sounding cheap, my go-to technique in this situation is to agree to the services and then pull the ol’ “hold my breath at time of checkout while I wait for the total” routine.  

7.) Chair Cheater

Most of us have experienced a time when we needed a service in a moment’s notice, so we commit the crime of seeing someone other than our routine stylist—like a dirty little salon affair – OR, heaven forbid, we try to cut/color our own hair. You pay for your transgression in the next visit with the stylist, when your hair is clearly shorter or a different color. She asks if you’ve been seeing someone else, and you say “no, the sun really lightens my hair in summer.” She knows you’re lying, and you’re forced to spend the rest of the visit in shame, like the cheater you are.

All kidding aside, we love and appreciate our stylists and know these awkward moments pale in comparison to what we put them through!


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