Want a big change? The 10 questions to ask yourself before a new ‘do

Fancy a big hair transformation? STOP RIGHT THERE! We asked experts for 10 tips and questions to ask yourself before taking the plunge…

The vast majority of us have tried our hair at every length, and loads of variations on colours. A poll back in 2019 found that one in 20 women will spend more than £50,000 during their lifetime on colouring their hair. Ouch. And we bet that not every one of those colour changes was a success, either. And there’ll be a few sorry cuts that you’ll have regretted too (you won’t be alone). 

As we get ready for party season and fancy a switch up, we need to know what we should be doing to ensure any big change has a happy ending. Let’s see what advice our hair experts have to share… 

Nicole Petty, Milk + Blush 

“Everyone loves a big change, especially with bold colours back in fashion this year. However, it would be wise for you to look into using a virtual hair colour changer before committing to the change for good. Apps such as these let you upload your photo and try multiple different shades to find the one that suits your appearance. These are great for anyone looking to experiment with their hair colour but isn’t sure what it will look like on them – avoiding any regretful decisions.”

Luke Hawkins, Luke Robert Hair

“For me it is always about suitability. Inspiration pictures are great, but I always put my finger over the face to reconfirm: is it the hair you like, or the face? As we know, I am not a plastic surgeon! It is our job to advise and be honest with clients about what we actually feel would suit and work for them.”

Jason Collier, A-list hairstylist

“Ask yourself ‘why are you doing this?’ People often come after a large shift in their lives, such as a breakup, or having a baby, and are often ruled by emotion. When your decision is influenced mostly by emotion, I find clients are more likely to feel regret as soon as it’s over. I always recommend people undertake a big transformation when they are in a positive frame of mind and feel emotionally ready for a big change.”

Sophia Karayiannis, Blue Tit Crouch Hill

“Upkeep! Can you afford it? Whether you’re going from cutting your long locks down to a funky bob or leaving your classic highlights to a platinum blonde, have a good look at your bank account because you’re going to be spending a lot more money (and time) on your hair. As much as a big new cut or colour is a great way to change up your look and add a spring in our step, you need to make sure you’ve got both of the above to keep that look and feeling going.”

Casey Coleman, Hairdotcom Art Team

“There’s loads of great questions, but a useful one is ‘what DON’T you want’? Maybe we should find examples of that. It can help distinguish whether you want a big change, or whether it’s a case of adapting what you already have.”

Rosslyn Orr, Charlie Miller South St Andrew Street, Edinburgh

“Talking a big change through with your stylist is essential, particularly with colour…. We can help you understand you natural skin colour, and whether your requested change will make you look paler and washed out, or flatter and enhance. Will it work with your personality and what you wear? You may find you need to buy some new wardrobe colours to fit the new look!”

Joanne Roe, KH Hair Leicester

“If a client is nervous, but committed, about having a big chop then it might be worth asking to do this in stages – maybe over a couple of appointments and looking at two different styles. Then they have the option to go shorter if they want to.”

Jodie Breeds, technical educator for Great Lengths Extensions

“With new extension clients it’s so important to have an open and honest conversation with them about why they want extensions, to ensure they understand extensions are a commitment. For example, do they want them for added length, thickness or perhaps both? Or are they looking for a quick colour switch-up? Do they know what kind of application method they would like – Great Lengths offer both pre-bonded and GL Tapes – and, importantly, do they understand the difference between the two?”

Georgia Bell, Society Hair

“We ask clients looking for a big transformation questions that include: ‘How often do you want to be in the salon? How much are you willing to invest to maintain the goal look? How much time do you want to spend in keeping your hair looking it’s best?’ We always put a personal hair plan in place for them, so that we have an agreed journey to reach their goal.

“At Society we are BIG on communication. We give colour customers a ‘Bleach Sheet’ that gives them the low down on what bleach is, what a toner is, and how it will impact their hair. For customers going for brights, we give them a ‘Unicorn Haircare Sheet’; it stops them panicking when their bath water changes colour, and helps them protect their bedding too!”

Norman Boulton, Not Another Salon

“‘What colour jewellery do you wear?’ I love, love, LOVE this question! When a client comes to me with expectations of a certain result, and is quite specific about the tone or the colour, I like to ask questions about their particular colour palette they wear on the daily.

“Clients who seem to be obsessed with icy, ash and cooler tones are always the one owning the most gold jewellery, red clothing and a warmer palette. It’s not a match! This can remind a client that if they are wanting something that they wouldn’t particularly choose themselves that it might not be the exact makeover for them.

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