Don’t Let PCSing Put a Crimp in your (Hair) Style

IMG_2076BBy Dawn Babb, MilSpouse and Professional Stylist

Finding a new salon/ stylist with every PCS can be a scary task.  As a stylist and a military spouse, I can share a few things to help make the process a little less painful for you and your hair.

Before You Move

Before leaving your current duty station schedule an appointment with your stylist for a final cut, color, highlight, waxing, or whichever service you need to have done.   Do let your stylist know that you are moving and will need a record of what has been done to your hair, including color brands, formulas mixed, and any special notes or tips on how they kept you and your hair happy and beautiful.

Most stylist/salons will share your hair treatment/care history do this with out a problem.  They’ll understand that you are a frequent mover and will want to help you out.  However, if you come across a stylist/salon that will not give you the information, then just have your new salon/stylist give the previous salon a call and see what they can do.

I cannot stress enough how important it is to take the time to get your last visit before you PCS.   Nobody wants to walk around looking frumpy while setting up a new home!  Just do it.  I promise, you’ll thank me for this one.

How to Find Your New Salon

Salon Referrals via Word of Mouth

Finding a new salon can be as easy as just asking around and making note of who goes where and why.  Word of mouth is still the best form of advertisement and it’s easier now than, ever thanks to social media.

Remember…patience is key, which is why I warned you to make a pre-PCS visit to your stylist…you don’t want to feel rushed to settle on a stylist due to six inches of roots and a unibrow.

 Keep Your Price Range in Mind

Look for salons within your price range.  Just because a salon is expensive, doesn’t mean it’s the right fit for your hair or your budget.  There are great stylists in chain salons, as well as in privately operated ones.  There is always a reason why a stylist might choose to work in a  chain salon rather than a private salon.  For example, I am a military spouse and I need a salon with a walk-in clientele, so a chain is the right fit for me.

Customer Service

When visiting a salon, someone should greet you within 3 to 5 seconds of walking in the door. Take note of the attitude and atmosphere of the salon, is it welcoming?  How busy does it appear?  Are the stylist eager to help you by talking with you about your hair needs?  Do they offer the services and products you are looking for?  Does the salon look clean and professional?

Take Your New Salon For A Test Drive

Most salons offer free 15- 30 minute consultations that focuses on the services you need and whether or not  you’ll require an a appointments.  This is a great time to take mental notes about your potential stylist.  As you speak with the stylist, do you get the sense that they have confidence and experience you’re looking for?

When it comes to stylists, appearances count.  Your stylist should look good, not to mention stylish, of course.  Start out by checking out your potential stylists locks…how do they look?

Here are some other questions you should ask yourself during the consult:

  • Are they knowledgeable about products and services you need?
  • Does the stylist seem  pushy about selling you products or services you don’t need or want?
  • Is the stylist listening to you and taking the time to answer all of your questions or concerns?
  • Most importantly, do you feel comfortable?

It seems like a lot to take in but these are important when finding someone to trust to keep you feeling and looking your best for you and your family.

Hair Salon image by (vincent desjardins)

Babb Dawn Babb is a mother of 2 teens (and fur kids), seasoned military spouse, and a professional stylist with 19 years of experience.  She loves working with people to make them feel and look their best.


  1. Good tips! I knew that I was going to be in my hometown a few months after PCSing, so I made an appointment to get my haircut when I was there. (I loved my stylist, so I was glad to get to chat with him for an hour and catch up in addition to getting my hair did!)

    I joined the spouse Facebook page for my new duty station, and I’ve already seen people posting suggestions for local stylists. Those word-of-mouth referrals are golden in my book! I made a note in my phone of who they were talking up so that I can check them out when I get there.*

  2. Most often I go to a new hairdresser on the advice of friends, and the same thing happened with this hairdresser. I was satisfied with the work of the master and the service, as well as the very situation in the cabin. And now it’s my turn to recommend to my friends.


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