If you’re interested in attending a beauty school like Collectiv Academy, it’s because you have a passion for a career in the salon. You want to help people look and feel their best, in an atmosphere where you control your work hours and can spread your social wings.

One of the biggest elements of this job once you graduate from our cosmetology school and move into the field? Salon etiquette. Everything you do around the salon, even some of the little things, will impact the way your clients consider you, and could have an effect on your bottom line. With that in mind, here are a few etiquette items to consider, and some to avoid, within the salon.

Speaking Volume

You want to be social, but not so loud that the entire salon can hear you – this is still a business, and you don’t want to interfere with other conversations taking place. Speak at a normal level as long as there are other clients in the salon. Also avoid profanity, even if you think your individual client is okay with it – others might not be.


It’s great to wear tasteful jewelry to match your outfit and present yourself as a beauty expert, but consider the needs of the client as well. If you’re wearing loud bangle bracelets on your arms that will be right next to a client’s ears for 45 minutes, these will probably annoy them pretty quickly. Make practical decisions about jewelry and other accessories.

Gossip and Touchy Subjects

Never gossip about your co-workers. Drama can be a major impediment to a well-run salon, and you don’t need to be the one fueling it. In addition, whether with clients or co-workers, stay away from touchy subjects like religion, politics or sex – these are industry taboos, as they take the focus away from clients and can also cause drama.

Cell Phone

Keep that cell phone far away from the salon floor. It’s unprofessional, and make sure you aren’t tempted by it. Feel free to check messages during your breaks.


Always keep yourself personally clean – both looking and smelling nice. You’re setting an example for beauty, after all. This includes cigarette smoke, if you’re a smoker.

Keep it Clean

Keeping your area – and the entire salon – clean will go a long way with clients. Clean up your area immediately after each client, and look to help the group and clean communal areas when you have time.


Never openly discuss tips in front of clients, whether it’s their own or someone else’s. It’s very unprofessional, and puts undue pressure on them. Don’t keep tips visible on your station, either.

While it may sound simple, proper etiquette is one of the quickest ways to set yourself apart in the beauty industry and create strong relationships with your clients. That’s why learning this skill is a fundamental part of our program. If you’d like to see it in action and learn if a career in cosmetology may be right for you, schedule a tour!

You’ll meet many kinds of people in your career as a cosmetologist, and one group of clients you’ll become familiar with is those who are overly cautious about health concerns in the salon. It’s true that there are a few chemicals and ingredients in common hair and beauty products that aren’t entirely healthy in large doses, and some people are particularly concerned with staying far away from any of these.

At Collectiv Academy, our beauty school instructors will teach you exactly how to handle these clients respectfully and with care. Here are a few basic tips you can give to clients who are overly cautious about products and chemicals.

More than Ingredients

Though chemicals will be listed on a given product’s ingredient deck, it’s possible that not everything included in them will be listed. Especially in the case of items like fragrances, these can contain unknown chemicals. These products tend to come with Safety Data Sheets, which you can refer the client to, or you can recommend that they contact a manufacturer specifically if they’re concerned a product has ingredients that aren’t listed.

Aromas and Ventilation

The aroma of a given product or area of the salon can tell a lot in some cases. Highly chemical smells can indicate ventilation issues – if you notice these, check how you can improve the ventilation in the salon.

Hair Health

The healthier hair is, the longer color can be preserved – meaning the less frequently clients will need to use dyeing products containing chemicals. Babying the hair includes investing in color-saving products, which can support hair health and make color last longer. Also advise clients to protect from the sun, and go without a wash for slightly longer periods when possible.

Natural and Herbal Solutions

For people who want to fully avoid many chemicals, you can advise a natural route. There are many natural or herbal hair products out there, for everything from hair coloring to treatment. Many people find success adding vitamin E, wheat germ oil or avocado oil to help condition hair.

At the end of the day, every situation will be different, so there is no answer that will work every time. Experience helps you know how to approach each situation. Our cosmetology program helps students gain knowledge beyond their years, by teaching them the tips and tricks we’ve learned through decades of experience. To learn more about our unique program, request an info pack.