4 things your hairstylist wants you to know

You sit down in the salon chair, and your hairstylist begins separating the layers of your hair with tinfoil. They grab their brush and begin painting the color on, sweeping it through the strands of hair like a work of art. Once your stylist is done, you sit for a while to let the color process. Then, your stylist rinses your hair out in the shampoo bowl, takes you back to the salon chair, and cuts and styles your hair. You leave the salon with a whole new look.

Update: This article has been edited to reflect Craven's current place of employment.

Courtney Craven —a hair stylist at David Houston Salon - A Paul Mitchell Focus Salon in Shelby Township, Michigan and Paul Mitchell: The School Michigan graduate — shared the best and worst parts of her job.

1. Don’t expect a big change in such little time

“A huge pet peeve of mine is when guests choose an unrealistic picture from Pinterest,” Courtney said. “For example, let’s say a guest has dark brown to black hair, and wants to be platinum blonde, but wants it to happen in one process and with little to no breakage. It’s just not going to happen. There’s too many levels to get through to be platinum in one try with no breakage.” Lightening hair can dry and damage it, so lightening hair in multiple, spaced out processes allows it some time to heal.

Photo via @courtneyxx_hair on Instagram

2. Stylists want to know when you love your hair

Stylists work hard to make you look good. If you love your hair, make sure they know it. “I absolutely love when my guests post selfies of their hair,” Courtney said. “It makes me feel very happy to know they feel beautiful inside and out.”

3. Know that haircare goes beyond the salon chair

You spend time and money making sure your hair looks good at the salon, so put the same amount of effort in at home to keep your hair looking great. “One thing I wish my guests would consider more is the investment they put into their hair,” Courtney says. “When a guest sits in my chair, I educate them on products and the importance of using the proper shampoos and conditioners to maintain or restore the health of their hair.” For example, blonde hair can benefit from purple shampoo, lifting brassy pigments from the hair to maintain the bright, fresh-from-the-salon blonde.

4. Trust your stylist’s artistry

Stylists go through school to get their cosmetology licenses, so they know how to create the outcome you desire. They might even be able to suggest changes that you like better than your original vision. “My favorite thing about my job is the freedom and ability to create,” Courtney says. “Being able to take a blank canvas and transform it into something even more beautiful than before is so rewarding. I take a lot of pride in my work and education.”

Photo via @courtneyxx_hair on Instagram

Let your stylist be the artist, and your hair will become a work of art. Keep these tips in mind next time you pay a visit to the salon. You can see Courtney’s work on Facebook on her page, Courtneyhair, or her Instagram @courtneyxx_hair.

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