When You Don’t Like Your Haircut


I did something this week that I’ve never ever done before. Something I’ve been scared to do for as long as I can remember. Something I’ve wanted to do at least a dozen times but never had the guts.

Let’s back up. I got a haircut last week. My stylist teased the back real nice and I left feeling sassy and satisfied. One wash and an at home blow out later and I was looking very “Mom”. My angled bob was a little too straight across and there wasn’t as much texture in the back as there was last time. I didn’t love it.

grumpy face
This is my grumpy face. That forehead crease? It’ll be as deep as the pacific by the time I’m 40.

And so, for the first time in my life, I called my hairstylist and told her I didn’t like it and that I’d like to come back in. I’m 26 and have gotten many bad haircuts and lots of haircuts that just weren’t quite perfect. As a people pleaser, I’ve always been terrified to hurt the stylists feelings or come off as cheap or ungrateful. This is the first time I ever did something about it.

There are so many days that I don’t feel like a grown up. Days when I don’t feel completely comfortable in my own skin. Moments when I’m stunned that I’ve somehow gotten to be 26 years old. And then there are days that I own it. It was a silly thing and somehow, I feel better for it. It was something a real grown up would do.

And my stylist. Was she mad, hurt, or pissed? Nope. Kind as could be and totally understood. Why was I always afraid to just speak up?

  • Good for you!! I hate doing stuff like that (returning a product to Sephora that I only used once or twice that made me break out in a terrible rash still makes me feel terrible) so good for sticking up for yourself and what you want! I’m glad that she seemed to be so understanding..that makes it so much easier. And I really don’t think your haircut is bad, but I’m excited to see what she comes up with!! Happy Friday 🙂

    • I’ve returned products to Sephora and felt the same way. I’m like, I’m sorry for doing this but the color was all wrong!

  • good for you for speaking up! i’ve been unhappy with haircuts before and have never spoken up. i need to be braver about speaking up!

    • Now some of the comments people left made me scared of speaking up with another stylist. My stylist is super tell-it-like-it-is and had no problem fixing it. She wouldn’t even accept a tip on the second cut!

  • I will be totally and completely honest…. my mother has been a hair dresser for 17 years. Anytime a client called back and said they didn’t like it and to fix it… it really did piss her off. Because in her eyes, it’s her art that is being criticized. Just a little heads up just in case.

    And always remember this… hair grows back. Look on Pinterest for some hair styles for an angled bob. Another thing I like to do is let it air dry and put it in a messy bun while it’s wet so it will get natural waves. I never blow dry or use hot curling irons/flat irons on my hair. It really does damage it.

    Sorry about your hair though! I totally feel you! Reason why I don’t let my mom practice on me anymore. HA! I have had every possible cut and color you can think of. Yes….. I went Army short… yowza!

    Sorry for the ramble!

    • Amanda

      Natalie– I disagree. My grandmother has been a hairdresser for over 40 years. She and every other stylist I’ve ever been to will tell you: They’d rather you let them know, give them a chance to fix it, and leave happy the 2nd time (with the possibility of being a repeat client, or continue to be a loyal client)– rather than just never returning back.

      Nadine, I do agree that it can be hard to call them and say you’re unhappy with what they’ve done. I’ve only had to do it twice, and both times, each stylist was more than happy to adjust it the way I wanted/asked for. Just think of it this way: you’re paying for a service. If the end result is anything less than what you asked for, or looks much different once you get it washed/dried at home (as long as he/she didn’t advise you against the cut/color) it’s perfectly acceptable to politely ask them to come back in. I’m so glad you’re happy with the improved cut– You look great with short hair! 🙂

      • A friend of mine went in after she didn’t like the highlights she got. Her stylist said, it’s like a car. If you took your car in and asked for a repair and when you left the shop, it was still broken, you’d bring it back. I thought it was an interesting analogy. I’m thankful my stylist wasn’t upset at all and was more than happy to fix it.

    • I knew there had to be stylists out there who would be offended. I went back and forth but my stepmom has been going to her for 12 years and insisted she wouldn’t be mad. I feel like I’d be able to tell if she was pissed but she definitely wasn’t. I’ll keep it in mind if I ever change stylists though!

  • I did the same exact thing when my hair color didn’t turn out the way I wanted it. I never had the guts until now to speak up. Funny how age will do that to you.

  • Honestly — I am so terrified of getting a bad hair cut that I’ve had the same one for years. Once when I was little a stylist got “lost” in all of my hair, layered it backwards [shorter layers on the bottom, longer layers on the top] + then we had to cut it off to my chin. I was traumatized for sure. Good for you for speaking up! You did pay for a service + you have the right to [politely] inform the stylist if you’re not happy!

    • That sounds horrible! I completely understand why you’d be traumatized. My hair is so straight and it isn’t thick so I’ve never had that issue. I’ve heard it’s pretty easy to cut.

  • I’m always afraid to speak up when I get a bad haircut because i feel like there’s nothing they can do to fix it but cut even more off. I hope she fixed it up nice for you!

    • I knew it would be pretty short if she cut more off but its not like ridiculously short. I like it.

  • YES – I still feel like a horrible person for speaking up when I don’t like something – and angled bobs are great, but just as you said, it can be the frumpiest thing when not done right. Glad you got it fixed!

    • Exactly! If it’s too straight across it looks really simple and kind of sad. My stylist added a little more angle and it’s much more sassy.

  • The previous comments are correct. When you are paying for a service it is supposed to be that you end up with what was agreed upon. Cutting hair can be totally creative and artistic, but it is also a business and any person providing a service for money wants to keep their clients happy.

    • That makes perfect sense. I feel like a person who doesn’t like their haircut is bad advertising just walking around. They could mention it to anyone and a stylist could lose their best marketing – word of mouth.

  • I think as women, we are often taught that it is polite to just “grin and bear it”, so good for you for speaking up! And I would just like to say, that I love your hair. My hair is super dark and curly and I’m always so jealous of anyone who has lighter hair that isn’t a frizzy mess.

    • And I’m jealous of curls! I actually tried dark brown hair once too, just because I’d been blonde my whole life and wanted to see what I’d look like. The grass is always greener!

  • I can completely relate. First of all, you’re hair looks cute. Second of all, I highly recommend Sexy Hair Root Pump for added volume. I cut my hair like yours last year and I wasn’t too thrilled about the cut when I styled it. After I got the Root Pump it was better. Also, good for you for saying something. I’m sure you did it in a polite manner and your issue was fixed.

    • Thank you for the recommendation! I’ve been using got2b volumizing powder which I LOVE. It does make hair feel kind of dirty though so it’s more of a day 2 product.

  • I always hate that I can never get my hair to look quite as good as when I leave the salon! I have to say I would have been chicken about making the call. My hair dresser chastises me when I don’t come back if I’m not happy…I’ve twice cut little pieces (really small) that would not lay right or bothered me…it wasn’t really his fault my hair has a mind of it’s own. That is great though that you did something about it!

    • You’re brave for cutting your own hair! Even when I had bangs, I’d never ever trim them myself. I just know that I’d be horrible at it.

  • I know EXACTLY what you mean! I’m going back to my hair stylist to get more of an “A-line” bob, mine looks a little too mom-ish too. Even though I am a mom, ha ha!

    • Mine really reminded me of the haircut I had when I was 5 years old. It was just too boring. If I’m going to have short hair, I at least need it to be sassy!

      • Gwen

        I just had this same thing happen to me. It looked all angled in the salon, and after styling it myself I look like I’m about to pack a dog and four kids into a mini-van (I’m 28, btw!). Yikes. Definitely going back for more angle!

  • My boyfriend has been afraid to get his hair cut ever since that time days before his senior photo in high school when the hairdresser made him look like a butch lesbian.

    But I’m glad you sorted it all out 🙂

    • LOL I guess everyone has their traumatic moments in life.

  • I am only now getting better at speaking up when I am not satisfied. And like the commentor said above, in my experience, hairdressers would rather you be happy with your hair than not speak up and be unsatisfied. You did the right thing!

    • That’s what I’d heard also. They want you to be happy. A friend of mine compared it to getting your car fixed. If you went in for a repair and you left the shop and your car was still broken, you’d take it back.

  • This is one of the reasons why I hate getting my hair cut. No matter where I go or what stylist I use, they never actually do what I ask them to. So I never get it cut and styled, I always just go for a trim. And grossly understate how much I want trimmed off, because they always get scissor happy and cut off more than that.

    I rarely am one of those people who complain, like to hairstylist or waiters/etc. I just get so much anxiety about it!

    • I’ve been weirdly laid back about my hair in recent years. I used to freak out a bit. My hair was long enough still that she was able to take a little more off the back to add some sass.

  • I have always been too afraid to complain as well, I always feel like my stylist would be upset and it wouldn’t end up better and then I’d have to find a new one. I love everything my current stylist has done for me, but I have definitely had this happen in the past and been too afraid to do anything.

    • I’ve been going to my current stylist for several years and my step-mom has been going to her for over a decade. My stepmom insisted that I call her because she knew she wouldn’t be upset. I guess I’m lucky my stylist is so kind.

  • A month or two ago, I cut my hair short for the first time in years- and I love it! However, when I was about to leave, my boyfriend and I noticed some pieces of hair that were uneven, etc., so when my boyfriend made me look in the mirror a second time and said something with the hairdresser right there, she blew it off and said that it wasn’t supposed to be perfect, etc. (this was after I left a generous tip and bought a hair product from them)… which made me feel like she was brushing me/us off, even though she could’ve easily taken a second look, so I was pretty unhappy with her attitude.

    • EEEK. That sounds awkward. Looks like your on the market for a new stylist. Mine was incredibly gracious about it and totally understood.

  • As a stylist, I know that I’d always rather have someone tell me they weren’t completely satisfied and give me the chance to fix it than just pretending it’s alright or going somewhere else. Because we always want people to be happy with what we’ve done with their hair! They are our walking advertisements after all 😉 I’m glad you spoke up!

  • I am very outspoken but am always terrified of hurting a stylists feelings… but then I went to hair school and realized, I want someone to be happy… So it’s great that you spoke up. I am sure she appreciated it!

    • I’m glad you said that. My stylist was totally nice about it and I’m very happy with my cut.

  • I work at a hair salon and we get this more times than you think. To be completely honest, the stylist does not want you to be trotting along with an unhappy cut and then tell everyone where you went. They would much rather fix it and have you love it. Never be afraid to call to get it fixed!

    • Totally. Word of mouth marketing. If you love your cut, you’ll tell people where you went.

  • I’m in your situation right now. I got a pixie cut last week (2 weeks ago?) and while I do love it, there’s something off about it and I felt like it wasn’t exactly like a pixie cut should be. However, I ended up paying the stylist and left. I’m trying to work around the hair cut but I have no guts to call and tell them I’m unhappy. Luckily, my hair grows out pretty fast 😐

  • Good for you! I need to do this but I am always scared they will be upset. I got a long Bob a year ago and wasn’t happy with the way it looked either. I just dealt with it.

    • Oh no! I’m really glad I spoke up and went back. I’m much happier with it now, although it is shorter than it was last time.

  • Lucky you, I just had a similar situation and my hairdresser did not take it as well 🙁

    • Gah! Someone else said in the comments that some stylists take it as people insulting their art. I’d say that my stylist is talented but she definitely didn’t take it like my hair is her art. I’m sorry that your stylist didn’t feel the same.

  • ive only gone back in once and it was so awkward and it shouldnt have been. hope you got it fixed! you still look cute though!

  • I’m so glad you called her! Doesn’t it feel good that you can be honest AND get your haircut perfect! It took me a long time to be that way, but once I was able to say something, I felt so much better!

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