The cosmetic and beauty industry is ever-growing, and the competition is real. Although you know there is enough work for everyone, growing your existing clientele is always good for business. Instinctively speaking, you may get testy when a client shows up at your salon with a less-than-ideal set of eyelashes due to someone else's work. You may also look at it as an opportunity to gain a client but being a lash artist, it is essential to revisit your journey as a professional. The right thing to do would be to find a solution to the problem rather than condemn another lash artist's job to your client.
When presented with a terrible lash application done by another lash artist, you need to empathize with your client's situation and maintain a professional approach to dealing with the problem. Here are some tips we recommend you can practice when a client switches their regular lash artists services with yours.
1. Never say never
You are not just a lash artist; you are also the messiah of all things lashes. When a panicking client comes to you to save their irreparable lashes, you do not turn them down. YOU can help. Showing empathy towards your client's lash problems and finding a solution is a great way to exhibit your expertise and grow your business.
When assessing their current lash job, explain the problem in detail. If you see that the extensions are too long, too thick, or have way too much glue on the lashes, you can use professional statements like this to handle the situation; "Unfortunately, your extensions have been applied in a way that is not in line with industry-standard, the application is not safe for your natural lashes."
Avoid using language that may insult the client or their current lash artists. Other options, such as replacing the lashes with a new set and educating the client on how this solution will resolve their lash issues. The key is to be upfront about what needs to be done to fix the problem.
2. Unavailable Lash Artist
You may have a client walk into your salon to do a refill because her current lash artist is unavailable, so this one time, the client has turned to you as a backup. You lay them down to do their lashes, and to your horror of horrors, you know those lashes are unsalvageable, and you must now be the bearer of bad news. Tricky right? Because they may love their current lash artist, and you don't want to be one of Cinderella's stepsisters. You will have to tread your way through this carefully. The first thing you could do is take a few close-up shots of their lashes (with permission, of course) and then show them the photos and a comparison between their lashes and your work. Having this reference point will give your client a clear idea of what you are telling them without pointing at the not-so-good work of the current lash artist. They may listen to your advice about reapplying their lashes; however, sometimes, they may not be open to your suggestion and may want to stick with a refill.
You will need to make a call on what you are comfortable doing. If the lashes are simply too bad to work with, you may have to draw a hard line in the sand and make your client choose between a complete replacement or finding somewhere else to go. If the lashes are safe but simply not to your taste, consider meeting the client halfway and refilling their set, but use the time with them to work on your relationship with them, apply the best set you can with what you have to work with. You never know; you may just gain a new client. It's always best practice to protect yourself and your salon from any mishappenings like this, and that's particularly true in tricky situations like this. Getting them to sign a disclaimer before you start is always your safety net.
3. Dissatisfied client
A client may have 101 reasons to be dissatisfied with their lash artist, and when they come to you for a solution, your job is to solve their problems. Follow the drill— assess, take photos, show them what's wrong and offer solutions. Educating your client on how the damage can impact their lashes will help your clients make informed decisions. Sometimes you may encounter pushback from your clients if the only solution to save their lashes is to remove and attach a new set of lashes. Because that would mean they will have to pay a bit more. You may want to soften the blow for them by offering a discount or providing a deal for their next visit. While this will make them feel a bit in control of the situation, you will also add another client to your list.
4. Don't be afraid to say NO
As a lash artist, you can only do so much! Sometimes clients may come in with damaged lashes, lashes you can't work on. Lashes that were not isolated correctly may be stuck together, lashes that were not attached properly, or are too heavy to bear by the natural lashes. It is best to be forthright about those situations. If you fear it would cause premature shedding of their lashes, damage hair follicles, or ongoing lash damage, not working on them may be the best way to show your clients you care. Your honest advice would save you and your clients both time and money.
5. Style Differences
Sometimes you may have to refill a client who had their lashes done by another artist. While the lashes are perfectly applied, they may not be your choice of style. If this client is coming to you and they are thrilled with the look of their current lash style, then you may consider making a few adjustments to your styling standards. The downside here is that you may feel a sense of loss of ownership of your work because the result may not reflect your unique style. But you never know … sometimes, stepping out of your comfort zone is like going on an adventure, taking up challenges, and coming back home to where you belong.
The bottom line is that there is no hard and fast styling rule. If you can work with your client, gain their trust and prove your expertise, they will come to trust your suggestions, including what lash maps might suit them best.
We know you take pride in your lash outcomes, and sometimes when clients come to you, you may feel iffy about taking on another lash artist's job. In the face of a crisis, when you exhibit yourself as a business that has the prowess to resolve issues, you gain a client and prove that you are a business that deeply cares for your customers. So, go ahead and do a damn good job of it!