Hairdressers share the cringeworthy mistakes they made as apprentices

Published 09th Feb 2022 by rachael
Hairdressers share the cringeworthy mistakes they made as apprentices

For HJ's Apprentice Week, we had to dig up these hilarious – yet humbling – early accounts of cringeworthy mistakes some big hitters in the industry made as apprentices. Remember - mistakes are all part of the fun of hairdressing school and always teach you a valuable lesson.

Hairdressers' Cringeworthy Mistakes as an Apprentice

“When I was at the end of my apprenticeship in South Africa I started doing the odd blow-dry here and there. One Saturday I had this young girl in for a blow-dry for her 21st birthday party. I partied hard the night before and didn’t sleep and came straight to work, thinking I’ll be fine. Next thing I knew I literally fell asleep half way through doing my client’s blow-dry, with the dryer still pointing at her head warming up quickly. She jumped out of the chair and ripped the gown off and walked out pissed off. I was very awake at that point but it’s a day I will never forget and luckily the boss didn’t find out or I would have been fired.” - JC Aucamp, Guy Kremer, Lymington  

“I had just joined Metropolis Salon so around 11 years ago now and I hadn't worked in a salon for eight years as I’d been doing session and wig work. One of my very first clients was a long-standing customer of Robert’s and the colourist was leaving on maternity and I took over all her colours. "The lady had very, very fine curly hair and she kept saying to me ‘I like it really bright with lots of blonde , you will do lots of blonde won’t you ? I don’t want lowlights, it really needs brightening up.’ "So, I did a full head of blonde foils, tightly packed and neat thinking ‘Yes, I’ve done a great job’ and I so wanted to impress. I had checked her colour record and disregarded it because it didn’t fit with what she was asking for. "Once her hair was washed and towel dried, I heard her shrieking: ‘OH MY GOD it’s too blonde, what have you done?’ "Basically, it transpired that she usually had a few foils scattered around her natural base colour and now she was basically Marilyn Monroe! The moral of the story is that the consultation is key. Sometimes customers don’t actually want what they ask for and I hadn’t done my consultation well and I paid the price.” - Ceri Cushen, Metropolis, Kingston  

"When I was training, I did a consultation with my male client I had a No 1 guard on the clippers. As I was training the clippers up the back of his head the guard came off which left a bald spot. I had to get my tutor to help me blend it in. Every time a male client came into the academy after that I hid in the toilet!” - Sharon Malcolm, Sharon Malcolm Hairdressing, Newtownards, Northern Ireland  

"In the late 90’s, it was very fashionable to have chunky, stripy highlights, I remember that at college I’ve learnt to do them by using a highlighting cap. "My girlfriend at the time asked me for a few highlights and I had the brilliant idea of pulling the hair out of every other hole of the cap. She did get a few highlights... and lots of dots to go with it…" - Danilo Giangreco, Danilo Hair Boutique, Chelsea   

"When you start you make so many mistakes which makes you grow. The first time I had a paying client in my chair I felt so nervous. My first client was a gent. As I trained as a barber as well as a women’s hairdresser, the cut went well until I decided to trim his sidesburns with clippers and whoops, I took one side too high... in the panic I decided to take the other side the same. It was not a good look but the guy never said anything, however  my boss, who was a multi-award-winning barber did see it and give me good old-fashioned telling off... I remember the words 'I have trained you to do a better job'. I wanted the world to swallow me, but I learned a lot from that experience and those words stuck with me. Now I thank her for it, everything she taught me has made me the way I am today." - Karoliina Saunders, Karoliina Saunders Hair Design, Highworth



Published 09th Feb 2022

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