5 On Your Side

Student stylists offer low-cost salon services

Posted August 10, 2010 12:05 p.m. EDT
Updated August 10, 2010 5:59 p.m. EDT

— Getting your hair cut and colored can cost a fortune. Add in a manicure and pedicure, and it can really add up. But there are some interesting alternatives for low-cost salon services in the Triangle, provided you are willing to let someone use you for practice.

The Aveda Institute in Chapel Hill is one of several area cosmetology schools that offer salon services at lower prices to anyone willing to let a student handle the task. The services usually take longer because the students work much more slowly than experienced professionals.

“The way the economy is, I take any break I can get,” said customer Debbie Hering.

Customer Kaylea Blunier said she gets her hair cut for $14 at Aveda as opposed to $30 at her regular salon.

“Highlights can start at about $90 for a full head of highlights. Here, we start you at about $50,” said Loren Vitter with Aveda Institute.

Students are closely supervised by instructors, “but we do guarantee our services so if something happens and you don't like the result,” Vitter said.

Hering said she originally came because her student stylist is a friend who needed a model. She has been back nine times.

“They need to learn on somebody,” she said. “He always gets better. He fine tunes the color to the point where we're happy with it.”

Stylist Wayne Smith is about to graduate and said the experience “has been the most fun thing I think I've ever done in my whole life.”

“I treat it like it's my hair. I don't want my hair messed up, so I try not to mess anybody else's hair up,” he said.

Considering the extra time they take, and the constant supervision, Smith said he believes student stylists offer a low risk and real deal on salon services.

Several cosmetology schools in the area offer discounted services. Both Wake Tech, Fayetteville Technical College and Johnston Community College have programs, as does Mitchell's Academy.

At Fayetteville Technical College, walk-in and appointments are welcome.

A few examples of services offered there:

Chemical Relaxer $36

Permanent Hair Color (virgin) $20

Haircut only $5

Shampoo, haircut, & style $10

Hairweaving $25 and up

Facial waxing per area $4

Manicure $5

*Senior Rates are half off regular prices

Contact 910-678-0160 for more information about other services.