Sarah Pelham is the Beauty & Wellness Expert for Bookwell.com.au, an online platform for instant bookings for hair, nails, beauty & massage appointments. For nearly four years Sarah has worked closely with hundreds of salon owners within the beauty and wellness industries. She has her finger on the pulse of new trends in this growing market.
Matthew Dyer is the General Manager and Co-founder of bookwell.com.au.
Question: What can we do if our hairdresser cancels on a very important day?
Sarah Pelham: This is never a pleasant experience, and what's more, you need to act quickly. Basically, you need to find an available stylist as soon as possible. You can use an online platform to check for available hairdressers in your area.
Question: Even if it's our wedding day?
Sarah Pelham: Either look for a stylist online or try to do your own hair, although the latter really should be a last resort since you probably had a really special do planned. It depends on how much time you have. It's possible to find a good stylist near you who'll save the day - if you take the time to perform a proper search.
Should you go back to the same hairdresser in the future? Only if you really, really like their work. It also depends on the salon's policy. Some salons will charge you full price for no-shows because they consider it a loss of earnings, but when the hairdresser cancels, the customer is not compensated accordingly. Other salons don't have the policy to charge for no-shows or when cancelling less than 24 hours in advance.
Question: Is it important to stick to our regular hairdresser?
Sarah Pelham: Yes, if you like their work. They know your hair and know what you like. People don't change their regular stylist without a reason, with common ones being the stylist consistently doing a bad job or cancelling appointments at the last minute.
Question: How is it best to explain to our hairdresser what we want done to our hair?
Sarah Pelham: Don't bombard them with information – let your hairdresser see and touch your hair first. They need to know what it currently looks like. To explain what you want, use specific words, ex. "soft fringe", "strong fringe", or "gentle lines." Explain previous problems if any, for example, a hairstyle or colour that didn't work for you in the past. Bringing a picture is always a good idea, but know you might be in for some disappointment – they might tell you that style won't work because of your specific hair texture or it wouldn't be flattering to the shape of your face.
Question: Should we present freshly washed hair at the hairdressers?
Sarah Pelham: Clean hair absorbs hair colour best. Even if you aren't planning to have your hair dyed, unwashed hair can put off your hairdresser. For best results, wash it the night before.
Question: What's next in hair trends?
Sarah Pelham: Popular styles here in AU this year include the cool, effortless bobs and long, loose layers. Two very different, but both very popular cuts. In 2019, the bob has voluminous ends and a triangular form. For the second style, the first layer is created by a long fringe.
Question: Is it ever okay to dye our hair at home?
Sarah Pelham: You could, but the quality of salon products is much higher than that of the dyes available at the chemist's. A hairstylist will also know the right dye for your hair type and colour. Some brands are very harsh and can strip your hair of essential oils.
Question: What is Bookwell?
Matthew Dyer: Bookwell is the place to go to find and book beauty and wellness appointments using real-time availability. Compare salons and services, read reviews, check availability, book and pay online - all in just a few taps.
Question: What inspired the creation of Bookwell?
Matthew Dyer: Bookwell was inspired by the difficulty in booking beauty and wellness appointments. It's currently not easy to find and book these services in Australia. Many salons don't offer online booking meaning that you can only book with them while the salon is open, some can be hard to get through to on the phone. Finding the right venue can be time-consuming and even if you find the right venue they may not have the availability you are after. Centralising salons and their availability on one platform offers a far better experience for customers.
Interview by Brooke Hunter
Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash