I know what you're thinking if you're not a hairstylist, "ummm but I'm not a hairstylist". Yes, technically it isn't your job to worry about this subject. It should be the person standing behind the chair. I'm writing this to give a little insight on what your stylist might want you to know before you have that chat.
We need to know EVERYTHING about your hair. The products you are currently using (be specific..."the purple bottle with the white letters I bought from Target" is not enough. We need names), your wash and styling routine at home, and history of any chemical processes done within the last year (that box color you put on your hair four months ago could still be in your hair and could turn into a fun guessing game if you wait to share that after your colorist applies your color). Communication is key. Also, if you aren't sure what you want, telling us what you DON'T want or like is just as important. Pictures of what you don't want also help, which brings me to my next point...
Don't be shy about pulling up some pictures on Pinterest you saved because we love a good reference. Some of my guests have apologized for wanting to show me a picture, as if they're offending me. When you're going for a drastic change in your cut or color, and you feel like you can't verbalize what you want, a few pictures can say a thousand words. Now, please don't bring in a binder with thirty magazine clippings because that's wayyy too confusing for both of us.(Yes that really happens.) Keep it simple.
Now that you have your pics and list of products you're using, let's talk reality. Do those pictures relate to your face shape, hair texture and density? Will it require more maintenance? Do I need to use a different hair products and tools at home? These are all things to discuss with your stylist so you aren't cursing him or her two weeks later. Knowledge is power.
Listen to what your stylist has to offer. Chances are, you're sitting in their chair because they were referred to you by a friend or you already know and trust them. We are creative humans and want you to be happy with what we have to offer so hear us out. Even if you only decide to get a trim the day of your appointment, at least you know where to go when you are ready to switch it up.
Stylists, how do you conduct a successful consultation? And to the consumer, what was the best/worst consultation you've ever had? I want to hear your stories!