Get An Affordable, Gorgeous Haircut Like Nicole Richie and Bethenny Frankel: Revamp Your Routine

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Brunette mommas Nicole Richie and Bethenny Frankel have healthy, shiny hair for the winter…do you?

We love Nadia (our beautiful DC contributor) not only because she is fabulous and fun, but because she is always on the hunt for the latest steals and deals. Learn how Nadia got a gorgeous new haircut…while saving tons of money!

Have you ever totaled up how much you are paying for hair services? Most families think they are stuck paying 10-15 dollars per haircut for children and up to 150 dollars for a cut and color. Of course this all depends on where you are living. Now I know you might choke at what I’m about to say, but have you ever thought about going to your local cosmetology school? This can save you over half of your normal beauty care expenses. It might sound scary to trust a student with your hair or other beauty services, but they always have help from a teacher. All stylists start out in school and I am a firm believer that either they have the touch or they don’t. I myself would have never ventured into a school, but when I myself was in school for esthetics in the state of Washington , I let students work on my hair all the time. I must admit, being a student made me more comfortable because I knew all my classmates. So I decided to try a school here in Northern Virginia .

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Our lovely contributor Nadia and student stylist Duy Nguyen.

After moving to the DC metro area, I was tired of paying outrageous prices for mediocre work. A colleague of mine suggested the Graham Webb Academy in Rosslyn. I was a bit scared but excited too!! During my first trip I stuck with the basics: a trim and deep conditioning. I only paid $35 (and that included a $10 tip!) I was so excited about my cut from Pedro that I booked another appointment. To my horror he wasn’t there and they handed me to another student, Duy. This time I booked a color and cut. Once again, I was so happy and pleased. Both students took around forty minutes just to cut my hair. Elizabeth Crow, a cosmetology instructor at the academy, explained to me that the students are only allowed to work in ¼ inch sections while most stylists in the field work on ½ inch sections. This made complete sense to me since Pedro and Duy took so much time making sure every strand was perfect. Ms. Crow also explained that students had to complete 900 hours, two large practical exams and written tests before they are allowed to even see a client. They finally can graduate after 1500 hours.

With my experience using cosmetology schools, I can tell you first hand that there is no need to worry. The students are so eager and excited to start working on hair. They don’t want to mess up and they are very careful. Now I don’t know about you, but when I go to a salon for a cut it seems like I am in and out of the chair in no time. You have to remember, time is money for stylists. They want to make a quick turn around so they can see more people in a day. Students have all the time in the world!! I also don’t miss the tired grumpy stylists that have been working for years and have obviously lost the luster of being a newbie in the field. At the academy, everyone is happy and all they want to do is the best job they can.

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A student stylist and client inside the DC styling academy.

Should you use to try something new, here are some tips you should follow:

* Call local reputable salons and find out what the best schools in the area are…

* Start off with a blow dry or hair treatment to get a feel for the school.

* Try to ask for a senior if possible…

* If you are not satisfied the first time, let the school know and ask for someone new.

* Speak to an instructor about the process beforehand.

Now remember, the academy is a learning environment and things move a little more slowly. Bring a good book, patience and positive thoughts. I hope you will take what I’ve told you to good use. Remember, most cosmetology schools offer more than hair services. You can get manicures, pedicures, facials and wax services. Think of all the money you will save that you can put towards your shoe addiction! Now if we can only find a shoe school somewhere??”

And guess who won our $78 Mystique Mountain Luxtural product giveaway? Congratulations to Nikita!

* What Do You Think: Would you ever try a student hair stylist, vs. your usual salon?

Credit: © People

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