11 of the Craziest Things Hairdressers and Manicurists Have Ever Seen

You think you've dealt with some wacky stuff? Check out these hair and nail-raising experiences from some of the industry's top stylists and manicurists.

New meaning to “buff” nail

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“I once had to do a client’s nails when she was completely naked. The reason? She was hot,” says international celebrity manicurist, Mar y Sol Inzerillo. Find out how to make your manicure last a week or longer.

Shampoo and a secret

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“As a hairstylist by trade, I’ve learned the ways of becoming a psychologist for each client who sits in my chair. I do believe that the art of listening has so much to do with the trade. And also, there’s something deeply vulnerable about sitting in a chair, having your hair done, or head touched for that matter, which allows people the comfort to express themselves, as well as some of their deepest, darkest secrets. I’ve often noted people saying ‘I can’t believe I’m even sharing this with you.’ And often, I find myself thinking me too!” says LA hairstylist and founder of La Tierra Sagrada Hair, Stefani Padilla.

Daytime drama

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“One time a client accused me of making her hair too light on purpose. She asked for it to be bleached blonde. It literally can’t be lighter than that. After she screamed for 15 minutes, she decided she liked it and walked out the door smiling. Man, that appointment was a rollercoaster of emotions,” says a Miami-based colorist. (These are the tricks to stretch the time between your hair color appointments.)

Surprise styling

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“Hands-down one of my favorite experiences was when I was assisting my friend and mentor Cesar Ramirez. We were on a press tour with TLC and as I was cleaning up our kit and station, Chilli was touching up her hair and grabbed me and said ‘girl, I know just what you need.’ She then took her own special brush and gel and styled my baby hairs to the best they’ve ever looked! That was the day I took my first selfie with hair styled by Chilli,” says label.m celebrity stylist Netty Jordan.

Nails and a nap

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“This is one of my favorite stories. One time, one of my famous clients fell asleep while I was doing her mani. She was sleeping on one hand, so I couldn’t paint it. She was sitting front row at a fashion show in Paris and had to hold her hand in back of her clutch for the entire show and for all photos,” reveals Inzerillo.

Favorite polish—and position

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“I learn a lot about my clients’ sex lives—favorite position, number of partners, fantasies, etc. I’m not sure why—and their bad habits. The stories I could tell…but I won’t,” says an New York City-based manicurist.

Pee for perfect

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“I’ve worked with many different characters in the movie, fashion, and music industry for over a decade, and I have witnessed some shocking secrets. One of them was with a client of mine in New York City. She had the most incredibly lustrous, shiny hair I had ever witnessed. As I was running my hands through her hair, discussing what we were going to do for a style, I asked her “is this your natural color?’ It was almost too good to be real! She said ‘yes’ and I proceeded to ask her exactly how she kept her hair so healthy and radiant. She replied, naturally, ‘I am a firm believer in urine therapy, and every morning, I pour a cup over my hair; massage it into my scalp and hair, and leave it on as a leave-in conditioner. I played it off as if it was totally normal—but felt much better after having her shampooed, before touching it again,” reveals Padilla. Don’t miss the 30 tips for healthier, more attractive hair (that don’t include urine therapy).

Cutting remarks

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“One of my clients was in a fight with her boyfriend. She decided while she was getting her hair done was the appropriate time to call him (and put him on speaker). They proceeded to have a 45-minute fight while I washed and cut her hair. I would have been mortified to air my dirty laundry in the middle of the salon (with other guests and stylists around, mind you) but it didn’t even phase her,” says an Atlantic City-based hairdresser.

A little too relaxing

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“I can’t even count how often I do hair while my client is sleeping. One of my favorite makeup artists taught me to wrap the client’s neck in a large comfy towel or airplane neck pillow, so he/she can sleep while hair and makeup is happening! Many times during glam is the only moment a client gets to relax and sleep if possible. I have even had to hold clients’ heads while the makeup artist finishes their work,” says Jordan.

Always a critic

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“I’d say the biggest gripe I have about some clients is their audacity to post a negative review on Yelp, then when invited to come back for a free service, they take down the review, never to be heard from again,” explains Ruth Kallens, founder and partner of New York City-based nail salon Van Court.

Cheating allowed

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“People tend to confide in their hairstylist…and often overshare. I can’t even begin to tell you the secrets and rumors I’ve heard around the salon—everything from infidelities and lies to finances and divorce…the list goes on,” reveals an Los Angeles-based salon owner. These are the 15 hairstyle terms to know before your next salon visit.

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Lindsay Cohn
Lindsay Cohn is an avid traveler who has visited 45 countries across six continents and writes about travel for Reader’s Digest as well as USA Today, Fodor’s, Travel + Leisure, Brides and PureWow. Beyond travel, she covers a variety of lifestyle topics including beauty, wellness and design. Her work has also been published on Well+Good, Elle Decor, Martha Stewart, Domino and Mindbodygreen. Follow her on Instagram @lindsay_cohn