Beyond the Live

The topic of today’s Beyond the Live is regarding…… Homework?

You might be wondering what homework has to do with being a Hair Professional but just keep reading.

I promise it will make perfect sense in the end.  

Work by Catherine Garza of Bliss…the Salon in Tucson, AZ

When we heard that Hairstylist Catherine Garza from Bliss…the Salon in Tucson, AZ gives her clients homework we just had to know more.  What type of homework?  Is this mandatory for all of her clients? And of course…what happens if they fail?  Catherine has been a Hairstylist for 6 years and specializes in Perming and long hair.  She was kind enough to speak with us one on one regarding why she gives her clients homework and the awesome results she has witnessed firsthand with her clientele because of it. 

Catherine Garza

Homework helps you hit goals!

We asked Catherine why she feels homework is important for her clients. 


“Clients will typically need homework when they have a goal they want to reach. Whether it’s healthy hair, going blonder, or preparing for a perm, clients will need to not only receive in-salon treatments, but they will also need to follow up at home. Overall, my clients who take my advice and take their products home (and actually use them), will reach their hair goal much sooner than those who don’t.

Giving a client “homework” is giving them a type of “hair prescription”.  “You told me you want x, y and z to happen, so you need to take home this product and use it x amount of times before we can proceed.” Garza shares.

We love how Catherine  explains a “hair prescription” to her clients.. This is a fantastic way of helping clients understand what is required if they wish to receive their desired goal.  


So, which products are the best prescription?

“I recommend Olaplex to all my clients. One of my favorite things about Olaplex is that whether the client has chemically treated hair or not, they can still benefit from the patented technology. I recommend that every client uses some type of leave in conditioner or cream. When clients ask me about my own hair, and how I can keep it healthy, I immediately ask what they currently use. Nine times out of ten they aren’t following up their regular shampoo/conditioner with a supplemental product. I believe that a leave-in conditioner or styling cream should be the base of all haircare (after shampoo/conditioner and Olaplex of course!)” says Catherine.

Choosing the right homework

Ok. So you’ve planted the seed.  They know what they should be using and why you recommend it.  But what if your client already comes in frequently, like every  6 weeks? Do you suggest they follow a specific regimen as well? What if they use a product that they love at home but you know the true condition does/will leave the hair in? What then?

“I definitely see a difference in the hair that uses professional products, and the hair that doesn’t. My clients who see me frequently but also use proper products will not have to do clarifying and extra reparative treatments. My clients who visit frequently but don’t use the proper products end up paying extra for clarifying treatments, deep conditioning treatments, and they may not reach their hair goals” explains Garza.

This is a very good point.  In the long run the corrective services could (and usually do) end up costing more than if they had just purchased and used the recommended products.  Next time your client doesn’t want to spend the money on good, professional products, I recommend explaining this scenario to them.

Homework guarantees the service!

So your client comes in for a consultation.  You give them the recommendations for their “homework” but 6 weeks later at the next appointment you can tell they did not follow through.  How do you approach this?

“I can always tell if a client has used the products I told them about or retailed to them. My goal is to educate the client, not be a salesman. Even if you can’t initially make a sale on a product, you’ve already planted the seed in their brain by bringing it up and explaining why it’s so good.

I will explain the importance of products if a client expresses to me that they are unhappy with their hair (or the service I provided) and I can immediately relate it back to their products. I’ve had clients complain their color “washed out”, only to find that they use drugstore products. I let them know that I cannot guarantee my work if they don’t follow my advice. Above all else, I want the client to know that I care about their hair and that I’m not just trying to make a sale. And, I explain that they can’t invest so much time and money into their hair only to have it ruined by their inferior products/or lack thereof” Catherine states.

These are such great tips! I know I have experienced first hand clients who were unhappy with their hair condition when they first sat in my chair but refused to use the appropriate products I recommended.  It is so important to let them know that they are investing time and money into their hair in the salon, and the importance of maintaining those results at home. 

Altering recommendations

I know personally with the change of season my hair routine changes.  I might use the blow dryer more in the cooler months vs air drying in the summer.  I also might shampoo more frequently in the summer than I do in the winter.  This is something that we need to take into account for our clients.  Their first visit they may state they shampoo 2 times a week, but during the summer, they might switch to daily shampooing.  

So we asked Catherine what she recommends as far as changing their “homework” from visit to visit depending on hair health, salon frequency, and/or lifestyle changes.

“I try to tailor all my products to clients’ specific needs. I feel there are certain products that are “baseline” products, meaning they can be used by anyone, for any type of hair. Olaplex No. 6 is one of those products that anyone can use, whether they heat style or air-dry. I recommend Olaplex No. 7 for clients who like to use heat on their hair, since it’s a heat protectant. Part of finding the right products for your clients is understanding their lifestyle and how they currently style their own hair. If a client has high maintenance color and loves to heat-style, she can still use No. 6 everyday, but she will need to use No. 3 at home as well. A different client, however, who only air dries her hair and that’s all may just be set with No. 4 and 5, and some No. 6.” shares Catherine.

To keep up to date on your clients lifestyle changes, we always recommend doing a  consultation before every service.  Even if the client has been in your chair every 6 weeks for the past 5 years.  Sometimes things that clients would not consider to be a significant change (such as a move, new medication, or even a new hot tool) could change what you would recommend for them for at home use as well as in the  salon..  The only way to make sure you are recommending the correct home hair care is to ask at every appointment.  But that doesn’t mean you cannot get a general feel for their hair needs when you can’t be face to face.

“A lot of my consultations are actually done over instagram! These days, clients love connecting on social media; and with the current world climate (COVID), clients want to get extra information and directly connect with their stylist. I have clients send me pictures of their hair, pictures of what they want/like, and I can send pictures of work I’ve done previously. If I ever feel unsure about someone after an instagram consult, I’ll invite them in for an in-person consult. I always reiterate what we discussed when we meet in person on the day of the service, too.

I inform the client if the service will take several sessions, what they can expect during their appointment, and what products I can recommend for them to take home. We also discuss price, but only if the client asks. I make sure to give an estimated price (ex; $125-150) and let them know this price will include everything I do to their hair, from color to cut to treatment, and I reassure them that I will let them know if their price changes at any time.” explains Garza

So what do you say to a client when they have no desire to purchase even knowing the above mentioned?  I know I have encountered clients in the past who say “But I love the way such and such shampoo smells, and it’s only $3.99 at my local grocery store”

“I like to tell my clients – You wouldn’t put regular gas in your lamborghini, would you? So why would you use drugstore products (or NO products) on your hair? Hair should look good everyday, not just when you’re at the salon. The best way to do that is to buy professional products!” Catherine states.

Your clients are investing so much time and money (not to mention all of your hard work) for those beautiful tresses.  At home maintenance is really important to keep their hair looking like they just walked out of the salon every day.  

Real life scenario

We asked Catherine if she could share an example of a client that noticed a change once they began using OLAPLEX and how the products helped them.

“I have a client that first came to me with relatively healthy virgin hair. We slowly started lightening her hair, and she would only visit 1-2 times a year. She began coming more frequently, once every 2-3 months. In this time, she started to notice her hair was more tangled, she had “fuzzy” pieces popping up from brushing it too hard, and she felt like she had more split ends. I had always explained how amazing Olaplex was to her, but she had never purchased any products. She never even told me what her hair challenges were, or asked me how to better them. I never liked the hairdressers that were bombarding me with products and information, and pressuring me to purchase something, so I typically don’t take this approach with my clients.

Finally, at a visit, she asked me what she could do to fix a few problems she was experiencing. She asked if we had products in the salon that could help. I talked to her and found out she didn’t use any type of leave in product. She would let her hair air dry, but her hair had also been lightened quite a few times. After discussing her regular hair routine, I decided it would be best to start her off with Olaplex no 6. She didn’t use any heat styling products, and she liked air-drying. This told me that no. 6 would be the best “starter” option, that way she could use it every day and didn’t have to give it a second thought. Three months later, when she came to her next appointment, her hair was noticeably easier to brush through before we began our color process. It was also shinier and less frizzy. She raved about Olaplex her whole appointment, and ended up purchasing the shampoo and conditioner (no. 4 and 5), and then would rave at future appointments about how long it was lasting her. I had told her about Olaplex for YEARS before she finally decided to buy some, but I had planted the seed in her mind, and she eventually went for it. Now she can’t live without it!” Garza says.

In closing, we asked Catherine to share with us her number one tip for retailing Olaplex.

“My Number one tip for retailing Olaplex is that it sells Itself!!! When you truly love a product and talk about it constantly, your clients will listen to you and love it as well!  When clients come back to see me for a second visit, I always ask them how their hair is doing, and how the product worked for them. Almost always, the client tells me they love whatever Olaplex product I gave them, and it encourages them to explore the other products. Discussing how great a product worked for them is the perfect way to get them to remember why they like it, and how satisfied they are.” she says.


We are so grateful that Catherine took the time to answer some of our questions and share some great information regarding giving your clients homework.  This is an important topic that we should be having with every guest behind the chair.  We know how much we care about our guests and their hair.  Making sure they know how to protect their investment is crucial and it starts with us, the professionals,  giving them homework.

“Olaplex has changed the way I do hair! I can push the hair a little further and completely restore damaged hair! Olaplex always has my back, it’s insurance for the hair. I have clients come to see me purely because I use Olaplex and they’d like to try it. I didn’t understand retail before I began selling Olaplex. I never had a product that could sell itself, I always had to come up with good things to say about a product to sell a client on it, but with Olaplex, it sells itself. The client sees immediate results” says Catherine.

Professionals and consumers alike rave about OLAPLEX.  Once you try it, you’re sure to LOVE it.

Watch some highlights from Catherine’s most recent live education “Giving your client homework” on OLAPLEX Users.  To watch the entire live, please click here


Catherine Garza

“I love challenges! I love sharing what I know and giving a helping hand to those who need it!” 

Bliss...The Salon - Tucson, AZ

Catherine Garza is a Hairstylist at Bliss…the Salon in Tucson, AZ.  She has been behind the chair for 6 years, is an OLAPLEX Advocate and specializes in perms and long hair.


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