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Thursday, 18 May 2017

Getting My Hair Cut By A Student At The Aveda Institute

I am addicted to getting my hair cut by a student.  Yes, a student!  For years, I went to a very expensive salon.  Initially, I was paying $45.00 then it slowly crept up towards $75.00, then $95.00, then $120.00.  Now with taxes and a hefty tip, I was looking at a $150.00 haircut and, pretty soon, I knew it would be closing in on $200.00.  I don't colour my hair or have it permed or straightened.  It is a simple trim. I know that, in certain places and circles, a $200.00 haircut is nothing.  But, for me, I noticed that I was beginning to dread booking my appointment.  It wasn't just the money but I would go in expecting to come out with a revolutionary haircut worthy of all those dollars and, despite constantly asking my stylist for suggestions, I always came out looking like me, with the exact same hairstyle that was now 1.5 inches shorter.  So, I let my hair grow and grow until one day I couldn't stand it anymore and typed in "cheap haircuts" into Google. And it came up with Aveda Institute.

It turns out that it is a feeder school for my very expensive salon.  What?!  You can book an appointment with an Institute, Academy, Advanced Graduate, or Educator Level stylist and the prices reflect the stylist's level of expertise.  Usually I request an Institute Level stylist who is still a student.  The cost?  Under $30.00. This includes a blissful head, neck and shoulder massage and an offer of coffee or tea.  It is quite amusing that you can get such a bargain at a place that is located just a stone's throw away from the financial district. So far, I have had amazing haircuts and haircuts that were average but I have never had a haircut that was horrendous.  Be prepared for the haircut to take a long time.  Depending on the student's skill level, it can take anywhere from 2 to 3 hours as they are supervised and have to constantly check in with their educator.  The trade off is that this means peace of mind for the customer as there is almost no likelihood that you will come out looking like you had a run-in with a  lawnmower.

Looking back now, I do wish that I had known of this option much, much sooner.  But as with everything in life, it required a turning point in mindset.  I grew up enduring years of bad home haircuts.  From the time I was young, it was drummed into me that I had horrible hair.  It was slightly wavy, like my father's, and, boy, was my hair hated for that reason.  I grew up convinced that, if I so much as set foot in a salon, the hairdresser would take one look and faint away in horror.  When I finally was old enough to earn my own money and venture into a salon, it was a relief to find a stylist who did a decent job with my hair and didn't look at me or my poor hair like I was the spawn of the devil.  I should stop and say here, that aside from a tendency to get frizzy during humid summer months, there is nothing untoward about my hair or anything remotely suggesting that I have DNA derived from supernatural beings, aliens or similar.  At least I hope not. Even when the cost kept creeping up, I stuck with her, too afraid to look elsewhere.  I know this sounds ridiculous but isn't it true that all those deeply buried anxieties are ridiculous when dredged up to the light of day?  Getting to the root of the negative livestreaming in my head helped spur me to make a change.  It is highly unlikely I will ever go back to the land of $100 plus haircuts as I can think of many, many other things I would rather spend my money on.  Now when I pay for my student haircut, I feel truly happy that I got my money's worth for that service and that the student acquired valuable on-the-job experience.  To me, it is an even, value for value exchange.  Now, I am not saying that an expensive haircut is inherently bad.  There is something to be said for going into a swanky salon with delicious perfumed air and bowls of fresh flowers.  I had a cordial relationship with my old stylist so that wasn't an issue.  But I was going for the wrong reasons.  I was letting fear dictate my actions and leaving feeling dissatisfied.  So the takeaway from this story is that, by letting go of an old fear, something beneficial and positive came out of it.  Have you ever had your hair cut by a student?  Let me know in the comments!

This is not a sponsored post.  
I will be embarking on a 30 Day Wellness Challenge starting in June.  I am definitely going to need an internet running buddy, maybe even an entire team of running buddies to drag me over the finish line.  So this is a call for help.  Watch this space and stay tuned for that!

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