3 Steps For Finding A New Hairstylist

I don’t know why but finding a good hairstylist, especially for relaxed hair, is hard. It seems fewer hairstylists work with relaxers. The ones that do many of them have antiquated ideas of how to care for relaxed hair and I use care loosely.

We can find ourselves needing to find a new hairstylist to go to because our current stylist moved away or stopped doing hair, they may have messed up our hair, we determined we deserve better, or we’ve moved to a new location.

Both times I moved states I had to look for a new hairstylist and it wasn’t easy. It was helpful though for me to determine what I wanted and needed in a hairstylist. These experiences helped me to define the following process for finding a hairstylist that met most if not all of my qualifications.

a hairstylists chair in front of a salon table and mirror in a hair salon.
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Make a list of what you’re looking for

Having a list of what you consider are qualifications for a stylist who is good enough to work on your hair is helpful for your search and evaluation.

Both times I looked for a new hairstylist I created a list. My list consisted of someone who
  • Does relaxer touch-ups often
  • Doesn’t have to be a whole lot but definitely not a couple of times a year
  • Will listen to what I want
  • Doesn’t think that hair needs to be relaxed bone straight
  • Won’t push for me to get a touch-up every six weeks
  • Doesn't have overly pricey services
  • Has several good recent reviews

Another thing to consider is how far away they are. I’ve driven an hour each way to hair appointments because I couldn’t find anyone closer that I liked.

Ask for recommendations

Once you have your list and know what kind of hairstylist you’re looking for it’s time to start searching.

Depending on what you’re looking for in a hairstylist, friends, and family can provide some good recommendations. Take notice of how the hair of your friends and family looks. Does their hair look healthy, does it have a nice cut? Start with them and ask for a referral.

If you’re part of local or hair-related Facebook groups you can ask people in those groups if they have any recommendations for good hairstylists in your area.

Instagram can be a great way to find a good local hairstylist. When I lived in Tampa, Florida I did hashtag searches for things like #tampahairstylists and #blackhairtampastylists. I found a few good options that way. Plus, these stylists typically post results from their client’s hair appointments and happy clients will tag their hairstylist when they post hair pictures.

Another way to find hairstylist options is to search online. You can do a simple Google search, or visit sites like StyleSeat. I’ve used it a few times and like it because I search not only by location but by the type of hair service I’m looking for. Plus, I can see reviews of the stylists, pictures of their work, and even book an appointment.

Schedule a consultation or trial appointment

Now that you’ve found some hairstylists that look like they meet your criteria don’t just select one and hope for the best, schedule a consultation or trial appointment.

Some stylists will charge a small fee for a consultation, while others may do it for free. During the consultation ask a lot of questions to make sure they will listen to you and have good hair practices.

During consultations I’ve had with hairstylists I liked when they put their hands in my hair so they could see what they could be working with. It’s also good when they ask questions about your hair regimen, the products used, and what issues you may be having with your hair.

If a stylist doesn’t do consultations you can schedule a trial appointment. Now I wouldn’t trust someone new to my hair to do a relaxer touch-up or haircut. When I’ve done trial appointments I get my hair washed, dried, and styled. During the appointment, I ask the same types of questions I would during a consultation.


Stay calm and don’t get frustrated during the process. It may take trying several hairstylists to find the one that’s perfect for you and your hair.