Little rest for stylists during busy Christmas period
Beauticians are hard pressed during the Christmas season when everyone is trying to look their best for the festivities. As the season draws near, stylists and nail technicians at the Babae Styles salon in Cross Roads, are bracing for the inevitable.
"Christmas is just a different time in a salon. It's busy during Summer and Easter, but Christmas is three times more hectic," Nicole 'Babae' Jones, who part owns the salon, told THE STAR.
In order to keep up with the rush, the salon, which was established in 2011, remains open for 24 hours during the week leading up to Christmas Day.
Natisha Miller, who oversees operations at the salon, said she has to hire additional staff to complement the 25 hairdressers and four nail technicians in the beauty hub.
Despite the extra hands at work, customers are sometimes faced with lengthy waiting periods, which Miller said she tries to turn into a pleasant time.
"The most challenging thing at Christmas is when customers come and don't want to wait. I'm trying to get some stuff to give away as well as games, because when a customer is distracted or get excited doing something else then the wait period isn't so much of a problem," Miller explained.
With their services being in such high demand, the stylists admitted that it is a challenge to cope, but the love for their job and the satisfaction of the customers keep them going.
Hairstylist Jodian Waldon, who is now experiencing her second Christmas at Babae Styles, said she has seen people journey from far just to get a hairstyle.
"Especially when it gets to the third week of December, you're going to see people coming in from all over, St Thomas, even Montego Bay. The most requested style is the bob cut. We are known for that," Waldon said.
To cope with the demands of the season, Waldon said her Christmas preparations start from early in November.
"We arrive here at 9 a.m. and sometimes we don't come out of the salon until 10 p.m., even midnight. Sometimes when you reach home you just have to sleep to come back to work," Waldon said, adding that it is all worth it after seeing the smile on the client's face.
Bittersweet is how longtime nail technician, Sashel Henry, describes Christmas at a salon.
"The good thing is that you make a lot of money but you will reach home in the morning and you have to be back here in a couple hours," Henry said.
She added: "It is something I love so I don't mind. Maybe if I had another job, I would be out there spending more money."