I have been an extension artist for 12 years and a stylist for (I can’t even believe I am saying this) 28 years. If there is anything I know with 100% certainty is that hair extensions are not child’s play.
By becoming an extension artist you went from a stylist to a plastic surgeon for hair. It is serious business. You are giving your client the hair of their dreams. You need to know that they take this seriously and make sure that the client has the knowledge to properly care for their new luxury purchase.
A contract takes your work to the next level. Not only does it show how serious you are about your business, it gives you an outline to follow during your consultation.
At my salon, the contract is extremely thorough. It covers the obvious name, address, and even medications taken by your client. This is important because some medications cause excess shedding with their natural hair. Which in turn gives you the knowledge to tell the client their raises will be sooner than expected. Write this on the contract and have them initial it so that everyone is on the same page. It also includes the cost of the extensions, the retainer and the time frame of a refund if you offer that. If there are any other foreseeable problems this contract is the perfect place for you to write it down and make the client initial it.
Let’s be real…. we know if the client asks “What if someone pulls on these extensions?” UUUMMMM nobody should pull on your investment! LOL but we ALL know how this happens. Yep it is really a thing. Here is your cue to go back to the contract, and write down it will cost X amount per bead that has been pulled off. Or if more than 3 beads are pulled off it is going to cost you X to reinstall the row. Again, make sure they write their initials!
Another common topic is “I like to ride on my boyfriends motorcycle.” Back to the contract, “If you ride on a motorcycle your hair must be tied down in braids and cover your head with a bandanna or a sport headband that covers over the weft. I will not be responsible for wefts that are damaged, tangled or destroyed from wind damage.” Don’t forget to have them initial the contract!
Again IT IS A THING! Wind damage is pretty severe. Not only can it destroy and tangle the hair, the top of the weft can become destroyed because of trying to remove the tangles from flapping around in the wind. Next time you are driving and you see someone on the back of a motorcycle with long hair, watch how crazy their hair is in the wind! It is everywhere!
The same holds true for water sports and wind. COVER YOURSELF! The client will give you cues. They say more than you realize when you listen. Sometimes they will reveal enough for you to know that they may not be a fit for hair extensions at all. Their vibe will let you know if it is worth it or not.
With every new install, the client fills out a brand new contract. For every raise, we have the client reread the original contract, sign and date it. You need to cover yourself every step of the way. Things can go south with even the most experienced extension client.
We also include a hair extensions take home sheet with instructions on their daily life and maintaining the extensions. SUPER IMPORTANT!!!! It’s good to go over this in the consultation and the install. Styling their extensions wrong can cause just as much damage as a color gone wrong or a bad install.
I HAVE SEEN THERMAL HAIRCUTS! It is really a thing. The client needs to be told multiple times what the effects of heat damage are. This will help your work look amazing for a lot longer.
The contract is also a place to sell retail. At my salon we tell all of our extension clients that our extensions are not guaranteed if they do not use Iles Formula Hair Care. It is a luxury service and it requires luxury products that created with the science behind extensions hair care. Iles Formula does exactly that.
Here’s where you will find a copy of my contract. Feel free to make any changes for your salon but remember that this is only a guideline for your own personal contract – it may not be legally binding in your state so I suggest you check with a lawyer. This is just what I have in place for my salon. Here is a link to our Hair Extensions Maintenance Take Home Sheets for Beach Wave and Smoothed Out Texture and Curly Hair. There is a great deal of information on extensions that will be helpful for you.
In the end the more knowledge you have, the better off you are! I hope this helps you.
Stay healthy during the home quarantine, and for those of you who are going back to work be safe and do an amazing job so the rest of us can get back to work!
Owner and Creator of Adored Signature Hand-Tied Hair Extensions