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Posted By:pokepres on: 3/7/2007 9:11:16 PM

Author: Thread: Justin Timberlake flatop...WHAT!?
Posts: 81

Justin Timberlake flatop...WHAT!?
Posted: Wednesday, March 07, 2007 9:11:16 PM
So in my salon there is a list that names each stylist and the services they do NOT do. (Example: mine says that i DONT do flat tops and ethnic hair.)

So I got a man today and he said he wanted Justin Timberlakes haircut...I found it odd that he wouldn't just say something like...shave my head. Because that is pretty much what Justin has. So, I made sure that was exactly what he wanted, and I started long...I started with a 4 all over and he said I could go shorter, so we took it to a 2. His friend then came in and says "It needs to be tighter on the sides." So I'm thinking "Thanks so much for your comment" as we all do when a 'friend' so lovingly chimes in. So he says "Yeah, and SQUARE IT OFF." I was like OMG, square it off? I dont do flat tops and it was a 2, you can't exactly square a 2. So I did my clippers over my comb and it was like THE COMB WASN'T EVEN THERE, no guard, buzzed a fat line into the side of his head. He says "uh-oh" and I froze and said "we DO need to go tighter." and went at his sides and back with my clipper with no guard on. There was nothing else I could do, So I left the top and blended it with my thinning shears. His lovely friend decided to tell my that my clipper line was uneven and continued laughing...which wasn't helping my stomach go back down out of my throat any more. The haircut looked fine in the end...the client wasn't all that happy, nor do I think he even knew what he wanted considering Justin Timberlake's haircut is perfectly round. So I didn't charge him for the haircut and he left. Horrible way to end the night. Please comment with some of your own hair disasters...I need the support LOL.

Posts: 189
Bronze Member

Don't beat yourself up, we have all been there!!!
Posted: Thursday, March 08, 2007 5:10:19 AM

This should help, I had a woman come in with a picture of the wedge.  After a really long consultation, we agreed that the picture was it.  I told her that with her appearance that she would come off looking rather boyish. Mind you this was a complaint that she had already told me about earlier (as she is holding this picture and saying I want that)  She had long hair and I was very reluctant to do this, 1) she really did not have the hair to pull it off.2) she didn't want to look boyish ( I can't change your face) and the really big one 3)she had really long, thin hair.  The stylist to my left was also my mentor and he decided to step in.  He couldn't talk her out of this either.  We came as close to saying she would look like a man with a woman's cut without saying it that way.  I had booked out 1 hour for her as she was a new client.  It was about 40 minutes into it and many other suggestions, when she said if I wouldn't just do it, she would have it done somewhere else.  I said ok, but I will tell you now, when these clippers go up the back of your head it is done, no turning back as it will be gone.  Do it!!!   Well I looked at my mentor and he nodded, he would help with the fallout.  I cut her exactly as the photo was, guess what she screams, I look like a man...   I would have loved to say I TOLD YOU, but not exactly in those words....  She proceeded to get up and strom to the bathroom where she stayed for about  minutes.  I checked on her several times, he checked on her several times, we thought she would stay in there the rest of the day.....  Thank goodness she was on of the last clients for the day, only one more for me and everyone else was done for the day.  So there weren't that many people to witness the breakdown.  I was half way through my last cut when she decided to come out.  She came and stood behind me and yelled look what you have done!!!  My last client froze, she didn't know what to do, hell I didn't either.  I asked her, if she would just hold on for a moment we would talk.  She wasn't having it.  My mentor walked over she screamed at him, you let her do this to me.  That did not go over to well, he snatched the picture from the station and told her the whole truth nothing but the truth, without raising his voice.  My client feeling pulled into this by the whole breakdown, said, as calmly as she could, that by looking at the picture, you have the cut and what the hell are you crying for, you got what you asked for.   So see even when you give some people exactly what they asked for it can still bite you....  Some people hae no idea what they want and then when the get it, they really didn't want that either......   

By the way she did pay, I learned a few things from that one.  Always tell the whole truth, as harsh as it may sound, it will be for the better in the end.  I knew she was not going to be happy as her face shape and jaw line were masculine to begin with.  No matter what with a tight cut she was going to look (not like a boy but) a man.  Which I should have just said, that plainly so there was no mis-communication.   There are plenty from when i first started, but this was after being in the industry for about 8 years.

So don't get down on yourself, just learn to be bluntly honest.  If they change things on you explain this is not what they first asked for.  Talk do not hold your tongue, they really do want honesty...

By the way Justin does not have a flat top,  and to do one the trick is to not tilt the clipper to the sides of the head.  The very middle will be the shortest as you will bring the curve up to it.  I can free style them better than the comb.  I tried the comb a couple of times but it slowed me down and I wasn't happy and ended up free styling it any way...

Good luck and hope you feel better....................


This is based on my experiences and beliefs, if it offends anyone I am sorry.  This is what makes this country and this site so great.

Posts: 2566
Platinum Member

Posted: Thursday, March 08, 2007 5:15:25 AM

Poor girl!  I could not do a flat top to save my life either.  I used to be so scared of clipper cuts I would not do them at all.  Finally a mgr at one of the salons I worked in a long time ago - when buzz cuts were in - took the clippers for me and shaved a big strip in a clients head.  He said now finish it!  So it took the fear away of the actual clipper.  I was working on an oriental man one day and he kept going shorter! shorter! shorter - and I was thinking this is going to look awful.  Then I did - and he screamed too short!  too short!  too short!  Needless to say it looked pretty bad and I said no charge and I am sorry - and I went home feeling bad also.  Just think of all the great work you do - and keep on moving forward!

Cindy Farr Hester  Asst Moderator

Posts: 1174
Platinum Member

Posted: Thursday, March 08, 2007 6:35:34 AM
We all have clients that either don't know what they want, or are describing something using the wrong words. Everyone messes up every once in awhile, I've been there too.

Make sure you have spent enough time in the consultation, STICK WITH what you two decided, then and only then, change the cut as needed afterward.

I usually ask and have them repeat it back to me if it is a drastic change, this is good insurance because they will "remember" saying it to you if you if thye don't like it.

NEVER allow someone else to step in and change what you agreed to. Finish what you started, then offer to change it or let them come back in a few days. Friends are often the worst critics during a haircut, and no stylist needs a play by play from a third party!

Posts: 187
Bronze Member

Posted: Saturday, March 10, 2007 7:13:05 PM
Don't ya just hate the "dreaded best friend"?

As to the woman with the wedge, that sounds like one of those deals where you were screwed from the moment the appointment was made.

Posts: 17

I feel for you.
Posted: Monday, May 07, 2007 7:59:21 PM
I can totally relate to your experience, on two different levels.  I have been in the industry for 15 years and every once in a while will get one of the "dreaded clients" who will not be happy with what they want, you know it, and ya know what, sometimes they know it also.  I had one of these a couple months ago, worst client ever.  The lady walks in with her daughter, I figure, o.k, another all one length "in my opinion, boring" little girl cuts where the parents demand her to have this long hair even though she hates it..lol.. anyhow, the girl takes off her hat and this hair was to the middle of her thighs... she was only 8 years old.  Anyhow, her mom says "I am o.k with six inches off".  I knew that six inches would make her freak out, so I only went with 3 and spent what felt like forever cutting it very carefully to one lenghth, I did everything to get down to a level to cut it perfect.  The mom starts picking it apart as I am cutting and just was a nightmare.  I explained every cut I made to her, luckily with both another stylist and the owner of the shop standing nearby cause I just had a bad feeling about this from the get go.  A couple days later, the lady calls back and demands her money back from the shop owner, I am told she was very rude and since our owner heard me explain every step I took with her, she refused to refund her.  We figured her for one of those consumers who knows that if they bark loud enough, many places will give them what they want for free.  Well anyhow, that is my point, this is why Best buy and many other large chain companies will track how many refunds or exchanges you as a consumer receive from them because they lose their but by all the dishonest shoppers out there, like the ones who buy a fancy outfit for a night, then take it back to get their money back after they wear it for their event.  In your case, when a customer makes the threat to me about "if you won't, I will find someone who will, I smile and tell them that is o.k and I hope that stylist satisfies them fully".  Contrary to what many consumers believe, we are not all so desperate and hungry that we are willing to compomise our professional integrity.  Just my four cents worth.. lol

Only worry about the things you can control, which is yourself.