Let me first start out by saying that I made my appointment at the Devachan Salon in SoHo two weeks ago. I have been looking forward to it for more than two weeks and I was so excited about it, I couldn't even sleep last night.
I drove in for my appointment at 2 pm and I got there a bit early. First of all, the building and salon itself are beautiful. It was such a posh-looking place and walking down the green staircase, I felt like I was about to give myself the biggest treat I've had in a long time.
I got to the front desk, wearing my hair down as they requested and I greeted the woman behind it. This only bothered me in retrospect, but I was slightly surprised that no one came to greet me, but I was too excited to think twice about it.
I understand that the receptionists are probably instructed to act professionally, but I feel there is a very fine line between "professional" and "snooty."
I know this may seem like I am being nit-picky, but I experienced the same when I spoke to someone on the phone. When I was called for my appointment confirmation, I told the woman I spoke to that I was definitely coming and was very excited. She didn't seem to care and I was left feeling slightly awkward.
Anyway, I believe it was the same person I spoke to on the phone behind the desk today, so maybe that was just bad luck. I was just left feeling slightly unwelcomed.
So, I was instructed to walk to the end of the hallway for coat check (even though I wasn't wearing a coat - just a sweater) and again, I was so excited that I just did as I was told.
I got a satin robe to wear over my long-sleeve t-shirt and I came back to the front. The same woman I spoke to earlier told me to sit down and wait.
A few minutes later, a girl names Katherine came to where I was sitting to greet me.
She was honestly the best part of my whole experience there. She was very sweet (though she didn't seem to have curly hair at all), and was personable. She made me feel a bit more comfortable. She sat me down at the chair where I would be having my hair cut with Marvin. As she draped a tower over my shoulders and cape around my neck, I sat in anticipation to meet my stylist. He came up behind me and just said, "Hi, I'm Marvin. What are we doing today with this hair?" I was immediately taken aback, because I thought his language and tone were a bit strange. I smiled and said (smiling), "Well, I was hoping to keep most of my length, but my ends definitely need some help. I was hoping to clean up the overall look and make it suit my curly hair a bit better." As I'm speaking, he's inspecting my ends and picking up some tendrils and dropping them - almost looking disgusted (I'm not kidding).
I sort of picked up on this and said, "I also should tell you I'm growing out a relaxer that I got over a year ago. It was a lower-strength one that I believe has worn off quite a bit, because my curl-" He cut me off to say, "Relaxers don't wear off. I'd have to cut it off."
I agreed with him and said, "You're right, I just would like to do it gradually."
He said, "ok, so you just want a trim." I said, "Yes, that would be fine. I would just like a cut to bring out the curl, while maintaining my length."
he said, "Alright," and got to work.
He didn't use a comb or anything, just his fingers and scissors. I found it a bit painful as he was getting his hands caught in some knots, but just plowed through them to the ends. I ignored it though, looking forward to the end result.
Sitting in silence, he cut around my whole head in sections, taking off about a half an inch overall I'd say. He didn't say anything to me at all, except, "Well, I can tell your hair will look much better when it grows out." I tried to make small talk, saying, "I have a lot of hair, huh?" And he just shook his head at me. I said, "Oh, I've always been told that my whole life by other stylists." He said, "They were probably just being lazy." Silence. I felt somewhat like I needed to defend myself so I said, "The only reason I had my hair relaxed, was because a couple of years ago, I had a really horrible haircut that was cut to my ear lobes. I relaxed it because it just stacked itself and looked horrible on me." He sort of pretended to empathize, but honestly, I felt like I was wasting my breath.
When he got to the front, he saw that I had bangs that were growing out. He didn't ask, but just angled them into the rest of my hair.
Then, he said, "OK, you're going to go with Katherine for a wash and I'll see you in a little while." As he passed me off, he made sure to mention to Katherine (and whoever else was in earshot), "She's growing out a relaxer, so it probably won't curl much."
I felt somewhat insignificant. Like a "nobody." I don't know why, but he really got to me. I've never developed such ill feelings toward someone in such a short amount of time.
Katherine washed me. This was a nice experience. She was talkative and she even complimented me saying, "I never would have known you had a relaxer. Your hair looks and feels so healthy." I thanked her profusely as this was the first time I actually felt GOOD at the salon.
She brought me back to a different chair as someone else was sitting in the one I had my hair cut in and styled me upside down with Arc Angell
. She clipped my crown (just like ShellyKnot does) and explained it to me. Unfortunately, when she initially took the towel off me a LOT of water dripped down my back. I know it was an accident, but my whole back was soaked.
She then moved me to ANOTHER chair to have the top of my head diffused. The thing tha confuse me was that no one else had to change chairs so many times. It was almost as if they didn't have room for me.
Then, they moved me to ANOTHER chair to have the midlength and ends dried.
The ends took a long time to dry and he came over and said, "Oh, it's the relaxers retaining water." Again, I just felt like he was shunning me or something for it.
Then, they moved me to ONE MORE chair to shake up my roots. She had me bend upside down again to massage the roots and shake up the product. It looked nice when I sat right side up (unfortunately this was temporary), but now, I was eagerly awaiting the finishing touches by Marvin.
I thought he would just touch up the curls and layers, but instead, he walked up behind me, handed me a mirror so I could see the back and said, "OK, thanks." I was SO DISAPPOINTED.
My hair didn't look bad at all. It just looked exactly the same as what I walked in with - but a 1/2 inch shorter.
It felt so anti-climactic. I don't get it at all.
Here's the thing - I understand my hair isn't the curliest. But if he felt that the techniques he practices didn't apply to my hairtype, I wish he would have told me before I sat down to have him cut my hair.
I really, truly don't see that he did ANYTHING special. He literally picked up each section and trimmed a half inch off, which I honestly feel I could have done just the same.
I went to the counter and was told my cut cost $114. I was puzzled, because when I asked over the phone, I could SWEAR she said Marvin's cuts were $85, but I was in such shock I just paid, left tips and walked out.
I met up with my boyfriend and the first thing he said when he saw me was, "Didn't you get your hair cut?"
And I just cried.
It sounds so stupid, but I just felt so let down. I really wasn't expecting miracles, but I was expecting something just for me. Something to sort of celebrate the fact that I was finally embracing my curls.
Instead, I was left feeling like an idiot for paying so much for so little. I am so surprised it panned out the way it did. I really don't think I'll be going back.
The truth is, I paid $10 more to have my hair cut wet, at Frederic Fekkai in Midtown and I always walked out of there feeling like a million bucks. And they NEVER treated me like a minion - like dirt.
I'm not even asking for my money back, I just wish I had stuck with what I knew.
I'm not saying others shouldn't get Deva cuts - just don't see Marvin if your hair isn't super curly or if you've ever had a relaxer.
I may post pics tomorrow - but I'll wait until I style it myself.
Thanks for reading.