How You Dress As A Stylist Speaks Volumes To Your Clients
Photo by Clarke Sanders
If you are a natural hairstylist working for yourself or a natural hair salon owner, you might have come across this issue. How do I dress like a hairstylist? In our lives, we have all come across different types of stylists. Be it strictly professional, uniformed, trendy, or home stylists, each has a particular feel and unique quality. Feeling confident in your personal style is great, but as a hair professional, think about how you want your customers to feel when you work with them.
Think about if you want them to associate you with professionalism, comfort, or glamour. All of these ideas play a factor in how you dress for work. While few salons will require a uniform, there is always the possibility for slight personalization. Whether you own your own business or are working for an existing salon, how you present yourself matters. If it appears you aren’t taking yourself seriously, that you don’t care about your work, or that you just rolled out of bed, your customers might turn to someone else for their hair needs.
Luckily, defining your style as a natural hair professional can be sorted into a few categories. This will better help you see where your style fits and how it can positively impact your relationship with clients.
Stick with Practical No Matter What
If you are familiar with working while standing the entire day, then you know that you need practical shoes. Not ugly shoes per se, but practical. There are some people on this planet that can wear a six-inch heel all day long and not ascend into heaven, but for the rest of us, a comfortable pair of shoes is the key to focusing on quality work. A solid color tennis shoe that isn’t overly bulky should do the trick, but there are also non-slip mary jane style flats that offer fairly good support. Investing in a good pair of shoes that you feel look professional, but will keep your feet from hurting at the end of the day is essential.
Keep in mind the fabrics that you choose if you are not restricted to a uniform. If you will be washing hair and working with products, you don’t want to select a fabric that will be ruined by water or other spills. Additionally, remembering that your arms are your greatest tools for styling, you don’t want a top that has flowing sleeves or is too restrictive. Any type of clothing that will inhibit you from performing your job is not the right choice. While sometimes that does not become apparent until after we have made the choice, considering it now will potentially cut down on that inhibition.
If you work in a salon that has a uniform then the choice is already made for you. When you get up and go work, you know exactly what you’re going to wear without a second through. While some people find this comforting, when you have a strong sense of personal style it can be a struggle. This is where your expertise will come in handy. Show your customers what they can expect by reflecting your personal style with your hair. Nothing is more assuring to a client than when their stylist has awe-inspiring hair. Additionally, if your salon allows jewelry, you can bump up your personalization with jewelry that isn’t cumbersome to your work.
A classic style is somewhere in between professional and casual. Choosing simplistic black or white tops with jeans or black pants is an industry-standard when a uniform is not prevalent. This being said you have your choice of button-ups, v-necks, or even more elaborate tops as long as they don’t get in the way and aren’t cut extremely low. This is a top pick for most salons that don’t use uniforms because it allows a sense of uniqueness while still looking very classy and chic.
A professional look with no limitations from a salon will mimic the classic look but allow for patterns and color. You will have many more options to consider. Slacks are recommended for this look over jeans unless the jeans are a dark wash. Being very selective over which patterns you choose can also make a stark difference. Houndstooth over paisley, small stripes over wide stripes, and always darker colors over bright. Accenting your outfit with one bright color will still keep your look professional while allowing you personalized.
Trendy style is the most fun. If you are comfortable with it and your workspace allows you to embrace trends, do so! Trendy doesn’t necessarily mean high fashion, but it refers to different types of trends. Whether it be boho, preppy, classical, or streetwear, there are tons of different styles you can incorporate into your salon fashion. Finding a way to interpret your style in a new way for work is a challenge, but if you’re a trendy dresser anyhow you are up for the challenge. Try wearing your normal attire, but slightly withdrawn. Again, keeping in mind the main function of your job as a stylist and avoid clothes and accessories that get in the way.
Dressing for work can be a hassle or a joy. As a natural hair stylist, you should represent who you are to your customers and invite them to trust you with your style. People might not remember anything else about you, but they will remember the way you made them feel.