Ok, so you probably don’t know that I studied hairdressing and salon organisation when I left school at the tender age of 16! But I did – for 3 years. I learnt how to book appointments and plan time, cut hair, colour hair, perm hair (heaven forbid!) and style hair. So you might say, I am aware of the underlying mathematics that are central to the world of being a hairstylist. I thought I would note down a few points.
1. Planning your time. Even tasks like booking appointments involve having some sort of basic understanding of how numbers work. This ensures you set aside the correct amount of time for each client. No-one like to be kept waiting!
2. Stock & Supplies. Being able to manage stock successfully and being able to order enough stock in for use is integral. A basic knowledge of sums and counting is involved in this and although we didn’t actually have to control the stock we were taught thee importance of it.
3. Payments & Handling Change. This is probably the most obvious way maths is used within the industry. An understanding of how much to charge clients is important, it must be enough to cover the overheads and remember to give the correct change!
4. Colouring Hair. Measuring the right proportion of product and developer to achieve the look is important. Volume and ratio is essential to mastering the art of hair colouring.
5. Cutting Hair. It requires more knowledge and understanding than just being able to hold a pair of scissors! An understanding of angles, length and shape are essential mathematical concepts to getting the cut right. For example, an inverted bob or layering. (Unless you like a bowl cut in which case it’s relatively easy!)
I still love hairdressing second to teaching and occasionally still do hair. I could watch hair programmes and tutorials on styling for hours if I had the time.