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Life’s Suggestion Box: To the salon hair washer determined to scalp me

To: The salon hair washer determined to scalp me

Suggestion: 

I am not a Cirque du Soliel performer. I do not hang 50 feet from the big top floor by my flaxen tresses. Neither am I in practice for that job. If you think you are training my follicles to become tougher and more resilient, I must politely request you KNOCK IT OFF.

If your hand gets caught in my hair, I would like to politely suggest that violently wriggling your fingers and pulling back like you’re trying to land a 900lb marlin is NOT the way to untangle yourself from the situation. As fond as you are of your hand, I am equally attached to my scalp.

If you find it hard to keep your hands under the hot/cold water you have running on my head, chances are the temperature is unpleasant for me as well. You do this for a living. My stylist tells you what product to apply. As far as I can tell, memorizing a pleasant temperature for water should be at the top of your relatively short “learn to do” list for this particular job.

I understand some towel drying may be in order at the end of my wash and rinse, but twisting my hair like you’re washing sheets for wounded Civil War soldiers is not the best way to wring out the water.  This ‘sheet’ is attached to my ‘head.’

Once you have applied your unique brand of torture to my scalp, you cannot make it up to me by squeezing my neck for three seconds with all the force of a person checking a loaf of bread for freshness. That is not a massage, and it will not wipe away the horror I managed to survive to that point.

Your limp-wristed temple massage, where you poke your index finger into the side of my head and swirl, makes me feel like you’re motioning to the people across from me that I’m crazy. I don’t need a little circle dug into my forehead with your nail, thanks.

When the little conditioner bell goes off, I want to get the itchy stuff rinsed out of my hair, tout de suite. I don’t want to sit patiently while you finish the story about the look on your lover’s face when he woke up with your cat on his head. I already heard this story last time, identical, but for the name of the lover.  So did the other hair washer.  I know she’s laughing, but she’s just being polite.

Yes, yes… I know you’re only killing time while you train to become a hairdresser, but if you could have a modicum of pride in THIS job in the meantime, both myself and my hair would appreciate it.

Amy Vansant

Amy Vansant

Author Amy Vansant enjoys long walks on the beach, anything to do with her Labradoodle Gordon and frantically getting nothing useful done.
Amy Vansant

14 Responses

  1. Abby

    You claim to be low-maintenance, but now you talk about having a separate hair washer at the salon? Fancy, fancy… I just have one woman who does it all. She is a renegade.

    Anyway, I have to agree with you though in that my girl will often get a little distracted while washing my hair and I end up getting a freaking facial wash at the same time. As often as she uses the hand-held sprayer thing, you think she would have better control over the trajectory of the water (which yes, is usually too freaking hot.)
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    • Amy Vansant

      Low maintenance, yes… graying since I was 22, yes… unless I want to look like a homeless woman I am a slave to the hairdresser every 6-9 weeks. Which sucks. Though not as bad as when I try to do it myself. Then I go right from homeless to bottle blond hooker.

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      • Abby

        I go to the salon around every five weeks, but we don’t have fancy hair washers 😉 I’ve recently resorted to box color though. Box wine, box color…nothing can possibly go wrong with that, especially when combined.
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  2. Saorcha

    This. Is. Hilarious…..and SO true…..I identified with all of these and I remember that once my hairdresser was busy talking to the other hair washer about having a brazillian..(ouch!) while she was rinsing shampoo out of my hair and she sprayed the water and shampoo onto my face and into my eyes…..she didn’t even realise until I had seen my life passing before my eyes. I was going to drown… I swear.

    Brilliant blog.

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    • Amy Vansant

      Waterboarding! You’re really going to have to stop getting your hair done at Guantanamo Bay Salon…

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  3. Jessica

    When I find a good hairdresser, I hold onto them for dear life. I’ve had so many horrific experiences at the salon that God help me if my hairdresser leaves me I might just start cutting my own hair.

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  4. lafemmeroar

    This is too funny and too true. I’ve been scorched by hot water before due to a careless washer. If she can’t make it right with soap and water I don’t think she’ll make it with a pair of shears. I’d love to know your experience with a bad haircut!
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    • Amy Vansant

      Best Bad moment – went to Hair Cuttery – girl was blow drying my hair and asked how I style it. I said “I usually just curl the ends under a little” (like with a hair dryer and a round brush.) She took a COMB, ran it through my hair to the end and then BENT IT and blew it dry, so my hair went straight down and then bent at a 90 degree angle towards my head. I couldn’t even say anything – I couldn’t shut my gaping maw long enough.

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  5. Basia

    I have a kink in my neck (true story), so it always feels so uncomfortable to have to lie back and have someone shampoo, condition, wait more shampoo, more condition, towel dry my hair. It takes what seems like forever and half the time the water temperature is just short of boiling. BUT what I find even more uncomfortable are the girls who do the scalp massages! It always throws me off because I’m not expecting it, and not only does it make the whole pain-in-the-neck experience last longer, but I feel the need to start conversation because it is so awkward. Which, of course, makes it even more awkward. Win-win! I once had someone come up to me while I was waiting for my hair dresser and break out into an impromptu scalp massage on my DRY hair while I was sitting in the chair, facing the mirror. So I had to watch her do it, in the reflection, and the look of mortification on my face as I started talking about the weather. Ugh.
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    • Amy Vansant

      I feel your pain. I don’t talk and find if I keep my answers short they don’t either as a rule. (they being almost anyone) I wish it was something I could change about myself, because sometimes you find out really neat things and as a writer that comes in handy. Unfortunately, I SUCK at small talk and that’s what terrifies me!

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  6. Stacey

    I go to a salon every couple months (when I’m consistently putting my hair in a ponytail because it’s not really a style anymore). There is one hairdresser. She does the hair washing herself. Your salon sounds way more fancy.
    Stacey recently posted..Just a Trim

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    • Amy Vansant

      We followed our hairdresser from smaller places until he and his partner finally opened up a very fancy one together!

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  7. Dana

    OMG! I’m experiencing the same as well! That’s why when I found a good hairdresser, I never leave them.

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