Every therapist must know about difficult days.

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Deep breaths my therapists, deep breaths!
You know how it is on difficult days – clients don’t show up on time, or sometimes not at all! Staff phone in sick and your product order arrives with half the products missing…
Before you know it the credit card machine is on the blink and you find yourself double-booked with no-one taking the blame! PLUS you keep getting unwanted sales phone calls, you feel ill, and the fire alarm goes  off….
Head aching already?
This is real salon life.

Been there!
We all know these ongoing stressors are going to crop up – usually all on the same day!
So how should we go about having a beautiful day in the beauty salon, when the experiences we are being faced with are far from attractive?

Inescapable bad experiences make you the wise one!

Difficult days.

Yes it’s true. Tough times will make you a better esthetician.

Wise beauticians and managers know this because they have lived through these tough days. This is what actually happens and how events really unfold:

Clients don’t show up on time, or at all – you eventually introduce a lateness/no show policy. In other words you tighten your ship.
Staff phone in sick – you get round to finalising or even starting the sickness contracts, and you get a system in place for reorganising their clients. You become more organised.
Credit card machine doesn’t work – you then keep the emergency number somewhere you remember. You find yourself finding a place for everything, and everything goes in it’s place!
A double booking occurs – you implement a surefire booking system that clearly shows who is mistaken – ensuring in the future you don’t leave yourself wide open to blame.
You feel ill – you learn as a business owner to really self-care. This is a must and you become fit and strong – like a boss!
The fire alarm goes off – you have bathrobes at the ready!

As you can see, all the things that can potentially and will go wrong, teach you something along the way.

As they are teaching you you are actually are being groomed for the next stage and your pain will be the root of your knowledge!
You start as an inexperienced beautician, you become more experienced….. you become a manager….. you can manage more salons…. you can teach other people…. you can open your own salon…. you can open 10 salons….. you can become a business mentor…. you can become a college lecturer.
You simply can’t reach the top without going through the rough spots, learning from them, knowing what to do and then becoming what’s known as well trained or old school.

How your personality and feelings can make all the difference.

If you are a naturally calm and non-reactive person, then you are not going to suffer so much – and neither will those round about you.
If you are not, then these are qualities you are going to have to learn – and quick.

You have clients and staff watching your every move during difficult times, and you have a large example to set.
On days that really stretch your limits, try and perceive at the time that these challenges are opportunities for positive growth, rather than stumbling blocks.
Choose not to feel self-pity, because you are not the first or last salon owner to be going through these troubles.

Choose instead to meet every difficult situation with a healthy, strong attitude, so you can be an example to others – your staff or whoever else is watching..
Respond to difficult days with absolutely no self- doubt. Do not let free- flowing anxiety take over you in a moment and be in command of your actions and feelings.

Other good character-traits to practice and implement in difficult times are being patient, being non
judgmental, being non-panicky and lastly being rational .
These human qualities will all serve you well when your salon day is not going your way.


When your salon goes crazy, simply exist to progress.

You should also know some salon owner survival hacks to get you through tough times, because you will have personal feelings that will arise afterwards. When you are back at home you will just sit and brood on your rubbish day!
Here are a few tips to bring balance back to you and your sanity:

You exist and progress!

Hold your vision and faith – Remember  the bigger picture and who and what you are doing it all for. This will be unique to you.
Have a support group – Make sure you have friends or family members you know you can turn to who will help you gain perspective every time. They will have your back!
Beauty forums – It is an excellent idea to join beauty forums and private groups online that focus on beauticians lives. They really are fantastic platforms to vent your frustrations about clients, staff, product lines etc. They are usually free, so use them as often as you need. Share your woes with those who know!
Self care – Always remember how taxing running a salon can be on your physical and emotional well-being. Remember to take care of yourself first, so you can go on helping others.
Practice acceptance that you can’t control everything – Ask for help! It can be a lonely road , being a beauty boss. It is so worth considering hiring a spa or beauty mentor to help you in tough times. The worry you will save yourself and the support you will receive from someone who has already travelled down your path will be priceless.
Limit time with toxic people – If you have a member of staff that is just not the right fit for your salon and is bringing you down you must say goodbye to her. Remember to always follow your local government rules on employment, and always be the bigger person during upsetting pay-off or employment ends. Remain professional and kind even if tensions have been running high prior.
Also, if a client is very rude, inconsistent with turning up or just basically a pain in the a**, then tell her you are full every time she tries to book. She will soon get the message plus your days will be brighter!
Do something about problems – Not every problem in your spa will be resolvable overnight. You can make yourself feel more in control of things by starting the process of resolution, one step at a time. Research, takes notes etc on what you think you can do to start problem-solving. It is empowering to know that you are doing everything you can in any circumstance, even if it’s just a little.

One last note, no problem in your career or business will go away until it has taught you how to fix it. But know you have gained much beauty wisdom, by coming out the other side.
I truly hope you can see that by living through difficult days in your salon will lead to making you not only a more more versatile therapist, but also a more experienced master of your trade, and in all things beauty.

Are you having a tough time in your spa right now? What would be the one problem we could help you with right now?

Please leave your comments below.



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  1. I enjoyed reading your article. I know it is geared toward salon staff and owners, however I think this advice is relevant to any business owner who is having a difficult day. I do agree that “when it rains it pours” and being able to step back and assess the situation gives you the opportunity to calmly solve the problems without chasing clients away.

  2. This is an eye opener, never thought managing a salon could be this hectic.

    I would start to panic if I came in for work and discovered my card machine has packed up and on top of that, a staff calls in sick?

    This advice here, is scalable unto other businesses, really helpful.


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