We feel your pain. That's why we consulted with hair stylist Jet Rhys, founder of the Jet Rhys Salon in San Diego, on the most clever ways to conceal a less-than-cute cut.
But before we delve into rescue mode, a few words on preventing disaster from striking in the first place.
Always go the salon prepared to talk about the style you are looking for, with pictures to help guide your hair stylist to what you want. Just words alone could create an entirely different picture in your stylist's mind from what you're personally envisioning, which can lead to less than stellar results.
And if you do end up with a cut you don't like, don't just walk out.
"If you hate it, say it! If you're unhappy with a cut, say something to your stylist before you leave the salon. Give him or her the opportunity to get it right. Every stylist wants their clients to leave the salon happy with their look," says Rhys.
If things don't go as planned or if you're already sporting a cut you hate, try these handy correction tricks.
Get creative with tools. If you didn't use a curling iron, flat iron or blowdryer diffuser before, this could be the perfect time to try one. Adding soft curls with an iron or volume with a diffuser if your cut is falling flat can transform average locks into cover-worthy tresses, says Rhys.
Add length to a too-short cut. If you have curly or wavy hair, simply using a flat iron will instantly add length to your 'do. For more dramatic length, look for a hair weft -- which is like a little curtain of hair attached at the top and free-flowing at the bottom.
"These handy hair extensions are fantastic to help ease your pain. Best of all, they're temporary, so no heat, no glue, just clip in! I suggest four panels: two for the sides and two for the back to create both length and volume. The trick to anchoring the wefts is to tease the hair one inch below the area you intend to clip in the wefts. Next, add a little hair spray and clip in," advises Rhys.
Experiment with product. The problem with your cut may simply be that you need to try some new products to style your hair in a way you're not yet accustomed to, says Rhys. A root-lifting volume spray can add va-voom to layers, while a silicone serum will add gloss and smoothness. If your cut is just overall "blah," try adding a texture cream for fullness and manageability that could take your look from flat to foxy.
Accessorize. "Even the worst haircuts can be camouflaged with the strategic placement of some cute barrettes or a headband," says Rhys. A pretty barrette can clip back choppy layers or a face frame that's constantly in your face, while a headband can help disguise the grow out phase of unwanted bangs. Look for Goody accessories at your local drugstore for stylish, yet affordable ideas.
Color can save the day. If your stylist has over-layered or thinned out your hair, color can make your hair look thicker. Go for a shade one and a half tones darker on the bottom layers, and keep the top lighter with sun-catching highlights. "This trick creates the illusion of depth, so your hair will appear fuller instantly!" says Rhys.
And if it's your color that has you down in the dumps, we've got some great tricks for that too.