Are Beauty Clients Stupid?
How many times have you left a client in your treatment room to get undressed for a massage and asked them to lie face down with the provided towel draped over them, only to re-enter the room with them lying on their backs with the said towel under their heads? I don't get it. Now when I leave my clients to get undressed I feel like Ant and Dec explaining rapidly all the different tariffs to their phone-ins before the ad-breaks! "Lie on the bed, face down, head that end of the bed, face down, put the towel over you and lie face down!" Of course there is still the odd occasion that I walk back into the room to find the client sitting on the edge of the bed holding the towel. Why? Perhaps I am unwittingly talking in Chinese.
More than a therapist
I think that when clients come to us for treatments they just want to be looked after, and perhaps the last time they were treated this way unconditionally was when they were children. As therapists, we have long accepted that we are unpaid councillors listening to our client's problems and trying to offer them advice but have we considered that we may also be surrogate mothers?Think about it, we take them to the toilet (never just direct them!), we help them on to bed, we help to put their sandals back on after pedicures, we place their keys and mobiles in their hands so they don't need to rummage in their bags after manicures, the list goes on, not to mention all the sympathetic gazes and sighs we give them when they tell us about their knotty shoulders or hormonal skin!!
Who else in their lives takes this much care and interest in them? Hardly anyone I bet. So perhaps the blame lies on both sides, we care for them and they develop a need to be cared for! It's a bit like when you are feeling fine, then somebody puts their hand on your shoulder and asks if you're ok because you don't look too well and you find yourself saying "actually I do feel a bit under the weather!" We've all done it!
Beauty therapists and hairdressers have been the target of many a 'dumb professions' joke for such a long time now but I think there is great pleasure to be had from the fact that actually our clients (occasionally) do indeed need to be treated like they are stupid!
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