Over 200 years ago, Congress got together to make a few updates to the U.S. Constitution that became known as the Bill of Rights. While many are still arguing about exactly what those rights are, we know you didn’t come here to talk politics. For us, there’s no question that beauty pros could use a little refresher on their rights as professionals, so we’re here to empower the United Industry of Beauty Service Providers with a few amendments to call your own.
The Conventions of a number of Gloss Bosses, having at the time of their adopting the Salon Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent abuse of its powers, that further declaratory clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Beauty Industry, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.
(In other words, here’s a collection of non-negotiables that every service provider deserves to stand by. You may want to memorize these in case you encounter any offenders of common client crimes – we promise it’ll be easier than remembering the Founding Fathers’ version.)
You have the right to turn away clients who don't respect your time even when they’re already “on the way.”
Life happens and everyone runs late at some point, but some people simply have poor time management and you know who those people are. In either case, you won’t always have time to honor someone’s appointment after a certain window even if you want to – and they have to respect that. Make sure your grace period and no-show policies are clearly listed on your booking site and they can’t say you didn’t warn them.
You have the right to take time off for yourself.
That means you don’t have to squeeze in clients after your business hours or come in on your days off. You are not responsible for clients who didn’t plan their schedule accordingly. There’s a reason things like online booking exist. Give your clients the opportunity to make an appointment 24/7 through your salon booking site, or better yet, get them to pre-book their next service(s) ahead of time and they have even less reason to ever be scrambling for your services.
You have the right to charge what you're worth.
Don’t feel pressured to give in to clients who ask for discounts. The clients who respect you will gladly pay your prices as listed. Period. If you lose clients because of your rates (or because of raising them), chances are those weren’t the clients you want to attract anyway.
You have the right to set expectations for the behaviors in your place of business.
Talking on the phone during the entire appointment, for example, might be unacceptable for you, and that’s ok. Let clients know the deal upfront with a policy section on your booking website. Whether you prefer a phone-free zone or don’t want extra guests tagging along, you have the power to list those rules front and center – and expect clients to comply.
You have the right to turn clients away.
If people claim they can find someone to do what you do cheaper, let them go. As long as you’re transparent about your rates and communicative about any upcoming changes, the people who value your talent and expertise will be happy to pay.
You have the right to set boundaries around your scope of services.
“Just a trim” does not also include a wash, a color touch-up, and a blow-out. List out your services online with descriptions that are as detailed as possible. Be sure to also include any add-ons that would be considered an upcharge. If a client asks for extra services during their appointment and you have the time to do it, great – just make sure you let them know there is an additional charge for that.
You have the right to protect your time.
Some pros might hesitate to ask for partial upfront payment or take credit card details at booking because they think it might set a bad impression or scare away new clients. For whomever needs to hear this: You don’t have to feel bad about protecting your time and money. You’re running a business that requires your hands-on attention, and when people don’t show up, your profits suffer. Feeling bad won’t make that money back, so set yourself up with a little insurance from the moment clients book you.
You have the right to share your professional (and honest!) advice with your clients.
You’re the expert here and just because a client asks for something doesn’t mean you have to do it.
If you know that a certain style or treatment won’t work on their hair type or won’t achieve the results you know they want, it’s your job as a professional to share your honest advice. By giving in to requests that you know won’t land, you’ll be setting yourself and your client up for disappointment.
You have the right to create the work environment you want.
Whether you’re begging people not to bring plus-ones to their appointments or kindly asking them to wear a mask, you get to determine how your salon atmosphere should feel and your clients should be willing to adhere. Simply list your policies and expectations on your website so people are in the know when they book, and double down by sending a pre-appointment email or text with a few friendly reminders.
You have the right to prioritize your health.
Now more than ever, people should understand the importance and common courtesy of staying home when they’re sick. Even if you have a client with good intentions who comes in to avoid a late cancellation or no-show and you get sick, missing a week of work will cost you a lot more than that one missed service. Your salon policy should also include details that touch on not coming in with a cough or fever. And should someone show up with any symptoms you’re not comfortable with, you have every right to kindly ask them to reschedule.