Monday, December 16, 2013

Business Review: VCC Salon Services [aka I’ve gone blue!]

For those who don’t want to read about my experience with VCC Salon Services, long story short, I dyed my hair blue a few days ago!

I’ve always wanted to dye my hair blue but whenever I get the opportunity to, the stylist I will go to will either A) not have blue, B) talk me out of blue and most likely, C) doing it all wrong and having “blue” show up in sunlight (like seriously, why bother dying my hair if Vancouver rains more than it shines?).

So, after being inspired by Demi Lovato’s blue hair, I decided to finally cut my hair and dye my entire head blue.

CTV News did an article about high-end pampering for a low cost and that’s when I found out about VCC Salon and Spa Services. I figured, these people are training to be professionals and there is supervision in the salon, so what do I have to lose?

I quickly booked an appointment with the Advanced Class because when I described what I wanted to do with my hair, the receptionist told me to book it with the Advanced Class to ensure I get a more skilled person for my new look.

The downtown campus where their services is located at is easily accessible by transit (bonus points!) and upon arrival, I was in awe by how beautiful the salon was. Extremely bright and modern – I heard they spent a fortune redesigning it. I was also greeted by very friendly staff instantly.

However, keep in mind that VCC expects you to pay upfront first. I was taken back by it because I thought… well, what happens if the stylist can’t give me what I want but the receptionist told me that I’m in good hands with the advance class that’s graduating in seven weeks. So, payment was made up front.

I was guided to my chair by my stylist, Song, a middle-aged Vietnamese woman. I had trouble listening and communicating with her because English wasn’t her first language. I was a bit disappointed because I wanted someone that I could easily communicated with so I can tell her what look I was aiming for.

Song nicely placed my jacket and bag away and quickly asked me what I wanted. After we consulted, she led me to the washing station and shampoo/condition my hair. I literally fell asleep because it felt like a nice massage.

After the washing station, she asked again how much I wanted to cut off and I told again the length I wanted. She nodded and started to get to work. Let’s just say… an hour later she was still cutting my hair (all I asked for was to cut up to my shoulders and layer it). For the first half of my head, it took her more than half an hour. Her hands were shaking and she was taking her time. When she finally finished the half, she sped through the other half like it was nothing. The supervisor stopped by and told Song that she’s cutting wrong and to redo a bit of my hair to fix it. In other words, after an hour+ cut, Song had to fix it up which took about 20-30 minutes. I did appreciate the fix up but it only caused me to have shorter than expected hair AND it ate up more time.

(Did I mentioned that I got in at 9:30AM and needed to be somewhere else by 3PM?)

After the cut, Song blew-dry my hair and I finally got to see the final cut. I ended up loving it despite it being shorter than expected. It worked out.

When I told her I wanted to colour my entire head blue, she went into a panic and called her supervisor over. The two of them told me that the blue is going to be super bright (I was aiming for a deep blue) and recommended me to just do the ends OR do an ombre and have purple on top and blue at the bottom. I liked the ombre so I agreed to deep purple and blue.

Halfway through the bleaching process, the supervisor (Gary) came to check up on Song. He then also checked out the receipt and apparently I didn’t pay for the service I wanted. Gary told me that if I wanted the purple, I needed to pay another $40. I decided no – if I need to pay another $40, I’d rather have my entire head blue and not half purple. I told them it’s okay, just dye the ends blue then.

Click to enlarge. VCC Salon updated price list.

After about an hour long process of bleaching and washing it off, Song finally started the actual colouring process.

A lot of her classmates stopped by and looked in awe. Gary said the colour is turning out wonderfully. Again, after sometime, Gary checked my receipt again and told me that I DO need to pay another $40 for the foils and bleaching process.

At that point, I got extremely pissed off. Not only have I been sitting in this chair for most of the entire day, missing my 3PM meet up, now I’ve been told TWICE that I need to cough up more money?! I explained to Song that it’s not what the receptionist told me. I told the receptionist exactly what I wanted and I paid the price she told me before we started. Song, with poor English, tried her best to apologize and get me to pay the extra $40.

By 4:35PM (remember, I’ve been here since 9:30AM), I was FINALLY out of the door after fixing up my bangs AND paying the $40.

Bottom line?

  • Be sure to have one of the stylist to check the price over when you’re at the receptionist.
  • Make sure you have the ENTIRE day free. I did not anticipated spending my entire day sitting in a salon chair for a task that would have taken about three hours max.
  • Have a stylist you can easily communicate with. I REALLY wanted to dye my entire head blue (and the final result of the dye was the shade I wanted!) and she messed up my bangs.

I understand that VCC Salon is a student run operation BUT if you’re training to be a professional AND you’re graduating in 7 weeks… it shouldn’t be this hard.

I also acknowledge the fact that if I went somewhere else, I would have easily went up $200+ and I shouldn’t be complaining about the price at VCC but it was ridiculous to be asking for more money when you expect me to pay up front.

Customer Service: 4/5
Quality: 4.5/5
Cost: 5/5 (compared to professional salons)
Would I come back? Yes
Would I recommend this place? Yes

Business Name: VCC Salon & Spa
Address: 250 West Pender Street, Vancouver, BC
Phone: 604-443-8332
Website: Here

*Disclaimer: This is not a paid review. The opinions written above is based on my own experiences provided by my own money. I am no way affiliated with the company in any way.

1 comment:

  1. It sucks you had to wait that long and didn't tell you about the extra charges. I've heard about this services from schools before, but I'm too scared to by since they are still students.

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