As people who work with people, we all know how important it is to provide good customer service.
It’s also important to understand that good customer service isn’t just about being warm and welcoming, providing consistently good treatments and having an easy-to-use booking system.
Especially for lash stylists, customer service ultimately comes down to how effectively you can communicate with – and educate! – your clients.
Let’s be honest: there’s a huge amount of information that we need to get across to our clients.
Think about how much you had to learn when you trained! If this information isn’t given clearly and effectively, misunderstandings occur, and ultimately, this will cause problems not only at the first appointment, but also for future appointments. While it’s still important to be friendly to your clients, it’s equally essential that you seriously and honestly educate them on what they need to know as an eyelash extension wearer. It might be difficult to have some of these conversations, but in the long run, your clients will thank you for it.
I’m sure you know that applying eyelash extensions to lashes that are dirty is totally painful and a huge waste of time, because those extensions are going to fall out pretty much straight away. And if this happens, naturally our client is going to be upset! To avoid this, we want clients to clean their lashes.
But it’s not enough to simply sell the cleanser as an add-on at checkout. If she doesn’t know how or why to use it, she’s likely to shove it in the shower with all of her other products and maybe only use it the night before her lash refill appointment, the same way she might floss her teeth right before she visits the dentist.
A great way to do this is to invite your client to cleanse her lashes at the basin before she gets on the treatment bed.
- Stand beside her and support her through the process step-by-step, and she’s much more likely to remember how to do it at home.
- Explain to her how her extensions will last longer because they are more securely attached to the natural lash.
- Let her know that she must remove the natural build-up of oils and skin cells to avoid irritation, infection, or lash mite infestation.
Don’t assume that your client knows about lash growth cycles. So many times, a client has very worriedly told me that her extensions were falling out “with my own lashes on them” as though this wasn’t exactly what we want to happen! Your client must not leave her first lash appointment without knowing that:
- It’s normal to lose 2-5 eyelashes per eye per day, with or without extensions. This can be up to 35 lashes per eye in a week!
- To maintain the fullness and style of their extensions, they need to have them refilled.
- Grown out extensions need to be removed and replaced to avoid damaging natural lashes.
- Refills are not simply a ‘top-up’ of lost extensions.
Your client needs to know how often to come for her refills. It’s important to give a personalised recommendation, as clients’ varied lash growth speed and lifestyle factors (and cleanser use!) will impact how frequently they need to see you. I suggest asking the following questions, which will help you get the information you need to make a recommendation, and will also help your client understand why it’s important she follows this recommendation.
- What skincare and beauty products (including supplements) do you use at home?
o Explain that hair/skin/nail supplements make lashes grow faster
o Some products make extensions fall out faster
- Do you have oily, dry or normal skin?
o Oily skin = more frequent refills, as lashes may fall off the natural lash as well as grow out quickly. She may also need to cleanse her lashes twice a day
- Does your hair grow quickly, and your fingernails?
o If her nails grow quickly, her lashes likely will too, so let her know!
You will also want to ask questions on your consultation form about any health or lifestyle factors that may impact her lash growth, such as previous chemo/radiation therapy, thyroid conditions or a very active lifestyle.
Often, clients present with vague or relaxed expectations of how their lashes will look, either because they trust your expertise or haven’t had extensions before. Other clients come in expecting their lashes to look exactly like that Kim K-inspired 20mm textured volume set they saw on Instagram, when their natural lashes are sparse or short.
When this happens to you, you need to remind yourself that you are the expert. You know why your client can’t have lashes like that, but she may not, so it’s your responsibility to educate her.
You don’t have to choose between a damaging set + happy client, or a safe set + unhappy client. Tell your client:
- “Unfortunately, extensions can only be about 30% longer than your natural lashes, otherwise they will cause damage. I can create the same textured look, but it won’t be as dense or as long.”
- “It’s really important that we look after your natural lashes. If we use extensions that are too long or heavy, your natural lashes will fall out faster and become thin and weak, and may droop downward permanently.”
- “If you would really like your extensions to be long, I’d recommend you invest in an eyelash extension growth serum. If your natural lashes are longer and thicker, we can use longer extensions.”
Another good idea is to take an up-close photo of her eye and lashes, so that she can see how long her natural lashes really are. Then you can visibly show her how much longer 30% really is.
Lots of people are visual learners, so you might want to keep photos of damaged or overextended natural lashes to show people if they still don’t understand. It’s really important that you stand your ground in this scenario and have the difficult conversation. If you overextend or overload her natural lashes, she might be happy today, but she won’t be very happy when her lashes are falling out and drooping.
Short-term discomfort for you = long-term satisfaction for your client.
When you spend time educating and managing these expectations with your client at the beginning of their eyelash extension experience, you will be on the road to success with happier clients who understand how to get the most out of their extensions. And happy clients = happy stylists!
However from time to time, even if we do our best to thoroughly educate our clients, issues can still arise. For more information on troubleshooting some of the frequent concerns lash stylists hear, such as retention issues and sensitivity concerns, head on over to our blog at www.lashjoy.com.
Read the original article written and published in Beauty Biz Magazine Australia.