Friday, September 22, 2006

The Joy of Being Pampered: The Beauty Shop.

I love getting my hair done professionally. I have no clue about what looks good on me, or the desire to learn. I want to go from shower to life without pausing to fiddle with either make-up, or my hair. Enter God's perfect solution: my beautician. Oh, what a gift she is!

She refers to herself as: "a hair diva". She is young, gentle and totally serious about her line of work. Not all beauticians are created equal. I have been man-handled by foreign speaking ladies who rivaled my drunken aunt with their styling technique. I've also paid good money for professional work, where strangers would stop me in the street inquiring: "What happened to your hair?" When you find a good beautician, treasure them, tip them well and remember to share how grateful you are for their skill and dedication.

For all of us child abuse refugees, pampering is far more then a luxury of the wealthy. For myself, I find pampering is healing for my soul. I look forward to my beauty appointments, as I do to my vacations. Both experiences seem to be restorative.

My salon is both a "day spa" and beauty shop. It is pricey and up-scale. You can get a facial, or a massage, as well as getting your hair done. To get a wash, trim, color and highlight will run around $100. Yes, I have expensive tastes. But, there is a way to get a price break.

This salon believes in a type of on-going training / practice for their people. If you are willing to let your beautician expand their horizons, everything is half price. Other then giving me a green tinted Mohawk, my beautician is free to experiment. This is a real blessing for me, as $100 every six weeks would be impossible. $50, is much more do-able.

Upon arriving at my appointment, I am served coffee, and sometimes a snack, of my choice. While I wait there are expensive fashion magazines to keep me entertained. The atmosphere is very pleasant and relaxed. Unless Miss Prissy comes to call.

I am amazed at how some customers treat the staff like servants, or even pets. I marvel at the restraint the employees have with this type of treatment. I wouldn't last very long dealing with: "oh! I made a 4:35 appointment and you are LATE! I made this appointment last WEEK!" Nose held high in the air, as they basically make a public scene. I do not clean homes for customers who try that routine on me. Hats off to the fine beauticians. They take it all in stride - causing peace to return to their shop.

I was also mildly shocked to hear my stylist share how some of her "friends" come over to her home, on her day off, informing her that she can cut their hair! Trust me, on my day off I DO NOT do housework and she doesn't mess with her own hair! How entirely rude! My x-husband was a TV repair guy and "friends" would come over claiming that they just "happened" to have their 21 inch console TV in the car. Could he take a look at it? He'd tell them to bring it to the shop like everyone else!

It is true, housekeepers sometimes live in a mess, accountants occasionally keep lousy personal records and hair divas don't do hair on their own time. I can sure relate. I come home after making someone else's home look beautiful, pondering my organized chaos. Do I want to pick this place up? The short answer: NO! Well, now you know the truth.

My "hair Diva" is in a new and successful relationship. We chat about our lives and she is as grateful for her life, as I am for mine. Her gentle touch is so soothing. I'm toying with the temptation of an outrageously expensive facial, just to get some more of her gentle manner. No wonder sweet Maria likes scalp massages. I may ask her to give me one! My goodness, this last appointment at the beauty shop was just luscious.

The appointment begins with a leisurely shampoo-rinse-condition and a final rinse. My hair diva takes extra time, just because she knows I like it. Then she takes a long time to sculpt my style. She puts in the effort to do it right. Next she mixes up my hair color and dabs it on with a little paint brush. I then get more coffee and let things set up for about 20 minutes. She then completes the final styling and blow-drying. Almost two hours of heaven.

I then purchase one $20 to $30 bottle of shampoo, or conditioner. I love the smell and feel of my hair with their expensive products. I have decided that inexpensive shampoos are no more, as they tend to take the color right out of my hair. The salon products leave me feeling so pretty. Yes, its an illusion, but hey, life is to be enjoyed. What I put into my looks, you might choose to lavish on your car, or your wardrobe. We all have something. So, I leave you now, feeling beautiful, but needing to tend to my church's website.

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