Maybe it’s an awkward topic, but it’s one that needs mentioning anyway: tipping. There’s no specific “horror story” to share here, but it’s a principle with which most stylists should be very familiar.

Maybe you’ve been working long and hard to get a full head of fusion extensions in. There’s been laughter, great conversation and ultimately, you’ve finished with a beautiful ‘do and a visibly satisfied customer. So you make some more chit-chat, hand them a business card and take the pay,ent for the service…and wait. Instead of producing a few crisp bills from their wallet, the satisfied customer thanks you for your service, and simply leaves. “No tip?” You think to yourself, and an array of frightening thoughts come into play.

“Was she dissatisfied with the service she received?” or “Did I really do that bad of a job?”

This is likely the result of a strange cultural phenomenon present in many salons. Some customers simply don’t understand that it’s customary to tip their stylists, and that (though opinions vary) 20% of the total service will usually make a good tip. The problem is, there’s no established rule for tipping, and so many customers simply guess, or don’t do it at all.

So what do you do? It can be frustrating, but haranguing a client for a tip may do more harm than good, no matter how good a job you’ve done.

Above all, remember that tipping isn’t a hard/fast RULE as much as it is a custom, and so clients aren’t necessarily obligated to do it. Yes, we’d all prefer that they did, but there’s not always much you can do if the appointment ends and they’re not going to give one.

Remember also that clients tend to give tips based on their level of satisfaction, and so rather than asking why you didn’t get a tip, it may be beneficial to simply ask “are you satisfied with the work we’ve done here?”

I wish there was a better answer here, but it’s generally best to let bygones be bygones here. Making a customer feel uncomfortable because they haven’t tipped will often push them further away and cause them to get defensive. It’s hard to enforce a societal expectation…and that’s why we say don’t.

Clients who tip well tend to know they’ll get premiere service on their next appointment, and if a client asks “what’s good for a tip?” be honest.

Focus on what you can control, and not what you can’t. Do the best job you can, be clear and personable with your client and everything will work out…and if they don’t tip? That’s on them honey. Don’t let it bring ya down.