Chicago >Beauty > Michael & Michael for Hair
365 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL | Directions 6061041.896403 -87.638170
Neighborhoods: Central, Near North Side
DO NOT ASK FOR VIRGINIA - rude stylist with mediocre ability – I wish I could give this place two separate reviews -- one for the amazing color experience I had with MARTA, and one for the extremely negative experience(s) I've had with VIRGINIA.
I've been to MARTA twice for color -- not only is she an extremely friendly, talkative person with a fun personality, but she does AMAZING blonde highlights. Very natural-looking (but still BAM! eye catching) and strategically placed. She is very meticulous and takes great care and time doing what she does. MARTA gets 5 stars as far as I'm concerned!!!
VIRGINIA, however, is a different story. After my 2nd time seeing Virginia, I made up my mind that 1) even if I returned to Michael & Michael I would never ask for her again and 2) I was determined to let the salon owner/manager know how I was treated by her.
VIRGINIA is rude and unpleasant, and above all she (for the 2nd time) refused to cut my hair the way that I asked. My 1st visit to Virginia, she had a snotty attitude and she made a comment about how she "wouldn't wear her hair that way", referring to the style I was asking for. Well no shit, we're not styling YOUR hair, we're doing mine! For my return visit to Marta a couple of months later, I saw Virginia again for the mere fact that she was available that day and I had seen her before. Although she had been rude to me the 1st time, I decided to give her a chance since she gave a satisfactory (although not above average) cut. **Note: I find it funny that Virginia thinks she's some kind of ground-breaking hair pioneer because she does dry cuts. She will ask you if you've ever had this done before as if you're supposed to respond: "oh my God I've never heard of that ... how avant-garde!"
Here's the kicker and my reason for not returning to Michael & Michael:
My 2nd visit to Virginia, she was rude (as usual), but this time she outright insulted me. I showed her a picture of the angled bob that I wanted with cascading, side-swept bangs. I have fine, straight hair -- not too much to ask, right? Virginia proceeds to tell me that she'd rather cut my bangs straight across (are you kidding???) and that the way I wear my bangs is, quote, "LAUGHABLE".
I was so horrified that I was at a loss of words (which as you can tell, is unusual). I decided I would not make a scene despite the RUDE, UNNECESSARY, and completely INAPPROPRIATE insult she just threw at me, so I paid for my services ($180 for a cut + highlights) and tipped my usual 20% on top of that (again, I must have been in shock to tip Virginia after that -- I should have flat-out refused to pay altogether).
The next day, after I had regained my cool, I called the salon & asked to speak to the owner regarding the extremely negative experience I had had with Virginia the day before. The owner(s) were not in, so I was transferred to the salon manager. The salon manager was extremely apologetic -- and that's it. Although I didn't ask to be reimbursed for Virginia's cut, I sort of felt like they should have offered since I was treated so rudely. Somehow I was still left with the feeling that they didn't find Virginia's behavior inexcusable, and that I must have misunderstood her or something.
The point is this:
People go to hair salons so they can leave feeling cute and refreshed with a fabulous new 'do. Some of us are willing to pay more than others for this end result, but in a city like Chicago, there are LOTS of other nice salons that treat their paying customers with respect. I'm not asking for much here -- I just want a great color + cut experience without being insulted before I step out the door. UNACCEPTABLE. And for this reason, I will not be back.
I went in with healthy long hair, left with it fried. – I am sad to say that not only wasn't my experience a good one, it ruined 3 years of work on growing my hair, leaving it fried and me forced to cut several inches off of it.
I have had my hair highlighted for years and never had an issue. I decided to come to M&M because a colleague of mine mentioned they were known to be great. I called to find out how much a partial was, booked my appt and went in. Lisa listened to what I wanted, I showed her several photos and we discussed how serious I was about keeping my hair healthy.
After rinsing me, she told me there would be no toner because the salon theory is that toner damages your hair but to come back if I decided I wanted it and she'd do it. The irony in this statement would appear three days later, my hair was a damaged, overexposed mess. Fried and straw-like.
I went to pay for my highlights and was told that Lisa had done a 3/4 instead of the partial I had asked for and I owed $30.00 more than they quoted me in addition to a $10.00 "new client fee". I explained this was unacceptable and they gave me the price for what I had asked for.
Over the course of a week, the splitting seemed to move up the strand and looked worse and worse so I called in for help. The lady who answered was very nice and explained that I should come in and have it fixed because this has happened before. I made an appt and spent another $15.00 each way to get there in a cab. I walked in and Lisa denied the damage. Please know, my ends are fried looking and it's like straw, this is not a case of my being sensitive. She told me it was "old hair" and that "We all lose 100 strands of hair a day". This angered me. Not only did she ruin my hair but she was insulting my intelligence. My hair was "old" when it came in and it was also long and healthy.
I spoke to the manager who was very nice and Lisa came up and became very emotional when I tried to explain my concern to the manager. She started getting very defensive and I literally had to spend 5 minutes arguing with her about how this was not a personal attack but about my damaged hair. Instead of understanding how upsetting this was for me and apologizing and trying to fix it, she made me more upset.
After demanding someone do something, the manager sent me for a protein treatment and then I was told to get a blo*out so the owner could assess my hair.
I was concerned drying would cause more damage but they insisted it would not. Tina was lovely and did a great job. After my hair was dried, Michael (owner) came over and told me that my hair on the bottom was old (no kidding, and undamaged until I came into this salon) and that Lisa running the bleach through the ends was the final straw. Lisa was told only to do my roots and she is the hair professional, she should have known this and been more careful, end of story. They made it about my hair and not about the damage that was done to it.
He then told me my cut was not working for me and I should schedule an internal "cleaning" with him to make my cut look better. He gave me a bottle of protein-infused blo* dry cream and I was sent on my way.
None of these treatments they gave me have helped my hair which is now fried, a brassy color and having to be cut off after spending 3 years growing it for my wedding.
I paid $160.00 plus tips and cab fare for them to destroy my hair and insult my intelligence .
I am less angry about the hair than I am about the way I was treated and their lack of accountability and snideness. When the blond woman at the front desk that I would not be returning, she looked at me unfazed and said, "So don't, that's fine." This is also the woman who got annoyed when she heard Lisa said no toner. "I don't know why she'd say no, that's more money for us."
This is not a place I would suggest any of you go to. If they do what you love, fabulous but if they ruin your hair like they did mine, you're totally on your own.
HAIR SANCTUARY IN A SEA OF CHAOS – First, I have been to almost every hair salon downtown,. I hate going downtown due to the limited or non-existant parking, but I hate the hair-huts in the western suburbs. This hair salon is so relaxing, (music aside which is clubby thumping). It is open and spacious and everyone is extremely friendly and attitude-less. Steven, (who looks like a Calvin Klein ad and is as sweet as they come), did my color. Beautiful. Not brassy. Some creativity. Instead of the usual drab, one dimensional highlites given to brunettes. He is no-nonse and tells you exactly what he thinks, which I like. No B.S. I had my hair cut by
Victoria,..one of the 2 best haircuts I have ever received. This cut is going to grow out perfectly. She turned me on to this spray called Prive' for my fine hair. I LOVE IT! Never heard of the stuff & I have bought every possible hair spray/hair texturizer out there. Can't be without this stuff. All in all,..a very talented group and a very relaxing & satisfying experience. The valet parking is a HUGE plus for me.
Editorial Review – River North salon provides cuts, color, hair extensions, straightening and thermal reconditioning.
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