Your favorite beauty treatments for less.
This article originally appeared on MIMI.
A day at the salon is one of our very favorite guilty pleasures, but even our beauty-obsessed ass knows it's important to tread carefully—salon services add up fast! With that in mind, there are a a few small adjustments (yes, we mean small) you can make to save cash and still have a fabulous experience. Here's how:
Cut Corners (So to Speak!)
Many salons offer discounts on certain days of the week. If you are flexible to get that color on a Tuesday afternoon with an apprentice, you'll probably save cash, rather than Saturday with that senior stylist, where you are likely to spend much more. But any day, there's always ways to avoid extra charges at the salon. "Ask the salon ahead of time if they can do a dry cut at a discounted cost. By skipping the wash, you'll get the same haircut but without the included cost of using expensive salon products. If you're unwilling to skip the wash, inquire about skipping the blow dry instead, or blow-dry it at the salon yourself," says Julie Ricevuto of YouBeauty.com. Some salons will cut the cost if a stylist doesn't have to take the time to blow dry, and you'll still get to use their tools on the way out!
Avoid the Extras
Even though we love those deep conditioning treatments at the salon, some can end up doubling the bill. Plan in advance, suggests celebrity hair stylist and owner of two Connecticut salons, Adam Broderick. Consider wearing an overnight hair masque for 24 hours before your salon reservation. No masque on hand? Warm your thickest hair conditioner and apply to dry hair for 24 hours before your reservation.
At a nail salon, be aware that the potential for upcharges are everywhere. If they offer you a special "spa pedicure" or a 10-minute massage add-on, just say no. (Unless you feel like treating yourself that day!) Ricevuto also suggests double checking that the manicurist isn't charging you extra for strengtheners and special base coats. Also, many salons will try to talk you into a callous removal service since it's an additional charge, however, their regular pedicure with a deep soak and scrub will do the job just fine.
Spread out the time between visits by taking extra good care of your hair. Cut back on using hot tools and only wash your hair 3-4 times per week so that you don't strip strands of their natural oils. By taking good care of your tresses, you'll be able to stretch the time between salon visits tremendously, says Ricevuto.
If you are very brave, you can also give yourself a trim between visits, however, only opt for a trim since you're not a professional, says Ricevuto. Invest in good quality hairdressing scissors and follow an online video tutorial (YouTube has some great ones) to snip off the dead ends.
Practice makes perfect. Nails and toes can always be touched up at home if you have the same color (we always take our own polish to the salon for this reason).
In order to make a salon or spa subscription worth it, it really depends on the subscription service and what they offer in their package, says Ricevuto. "For example, the blow-drying membership at Drybar gives you two blowouts per month at $75, and unused blowouts roll over so you're never truly losing money on a blowout," Ricevuto says.
If you are a blowout junkie (like me!) and are going to be hitting the salon every week (or more), then the best way for you to save money is to consider a "gym membership"–for your hair! Services like VIVE give you unlimited blowouts in a month for $99. It works out to be an incredible deal, and you never have to worry about getting caught in the rain.