As colorists, we can all agree that a majority of our clientele is comprised of women. We can also agree that dozens of men walk through the doors of our salons every day. Yet, with the exception of the occasional fashion-forward twenty-something or the self-conscious gray haired forty-something that lands in your chair for a color service, most of these male guests visits are limited to the usual monthly trim. And so on a weekly basis, hundreds of extra service dollars slip through our fingers, as we are continually thwarted by the one riddle that has plagued colorists since the dawn of time (or henna): how do we get our male guests interested in coloring their hair?
For starters, what's good for the goose is most definitely not good for the gander. When it comes to hair color, you'd best be armed with a whole 'other repertoire of formulas and techniques, customized exclusively for your male guests. Lots of time, energy, and money has been spent on encouraging guys away from the barbershop and into the salon. Now that they're in the door, let's figure out how to use their presence and sweet virgin hair to grow our businesses even further. Whether it's foil placement, tonal value, or just knowing when to reach for permanent or deposit only, men's hair color calls for an entirely different approach from a colorist’s perspective.
This alternative approach is something we all need to have a firm grasp on if we expected our regular's husband to ever go under the brush again after his wife has talked him in to letting us color his hair. Most men are turned off by the idea of coloring their hair because they don't want to look like they color their hair, and they aren't even aware that polished, masculine, nature-enhancing color is even possible. In men's minds, coloring your hair falls somewhere in between wearing make-up and dieting. So how can we shift this paradigm?
Perhaps if we as colorists mastered this male-friendly approach, we'd all finally be able to smash through that glass-ceiling we've all hit when it comes to increasing our male guests' service dollars. Imagine adding on a 30 or 40 dollar color service to just 2 of your male guests per day? That's an extra few hundred per week! And did I mention these guests are already loyal to you/your salon and in your chair(s) as haircut appointments?
All of this potential is very exciting, and the first step is for us as colorists to talk about it. So let's open up the discussion!
Do you have male color guests presently?
How do you talk to your male guests about color?
What are your favorite men's color formulas? Permanent or Deposit Only?
What are your favorite foil techniques/placements on men?
Let's pool all of our knowledge and experience together and give ourselves a brand new bag of tricks when it comes to men's color.