Styling hair is hard work. You're required to be creative, friendly, organized and diplomatic. During an interview for a position as a hair stylist, you should be prepared to be professional, while also showing your personality.
Your interviewer will want to see how well you can handle balancing all of these aspects of your personality to ultimately fit the needs of the client. As much as possible, you should try to balance your answers between what is best for the customer and what is best for the business.
Questions to expect
Tell me a little about your education and work experience.
Education means something a little different in the beauty industry than in most other job markets. Your education as a hair stylist could be working under someone else who was talented and taught you first hand.
Alternatively, you may have attended a beauty school and had a more formal education.
If you've been working in the field for a while, make sure you address any continuing education you've received over the years.
As trends come in and out of style, hair stylists often have to learn new techniques or how to use new tools, and it's important to show that you've kept up with the changes.
If you've never worked in the field, but you attended a beauty school, talk about any experience you received during that education, such as working in an apprenticeship or in an on-campus salon.
Explain your consultation process.
As a hair stylist, you will have to discuss with your customer what kind of style they are looking for. You may have customers who will provide you with pictures of celebrities cut from a magazine, pictures of themselves from some other point in time or perhaps just a description of what they're looking for. Your job is to listen to the client and help them to choose a variation of the style that will work for their hair type, face shape and typical beauty routine.
Explain to the interviewer what questions you would ask the client to get to this result, and how you will explain your suggestions. Be sure to talk about how you will deal with a client who disagrees with your assertion. You should give the client good advice, but be willing to ultimately give them the haircut they want, regardless of whether or not you agree with it.
How would you handle a dissatisfied client?
When you work in a creative profession, it can be difficult when a client feels you've failed to give them what they wanted. Explain to the interviewer that because of your thorough consultation process, you do not anticipate having a dissatisfied customer. However, if a customer were to dislike their results, you would follow salon policy for managing the situation. If the interviewer asks what you would do if there were no policy in place, be diplomatic.
Explain that you would offer to restyle the client's hair or offer additional services to make any changes the client requests. If you failed to give the customer what they wanted, say you'd offer a refund. If the customer had unrealistic expectations, explain you would do whatever you could to make them happy that day, but that you would not offer any money back on the services. Be careful to balance a response that makes the customer happy, and keeps the salon in the black.
You've chosen a fun and exciting career path where you can let your personality and creativity shine. During an interview, you need to also show that you can be a business-minded professional and good representative of the salon. Make sure you research the business before the interview so that you know their vibe and culture, and show the interviewer how you will be an asset to the team.