1st Impressions: I was greeted when I came in and directed to the owner, Kadi. The shop just looked regular to me - nothing fancy or impressive. It was clean and being cleaned regularly. It doubles as a beauty supply so there's weave aplenty and other hair supplies along all the walls and shelves. It also has two big screen TVs that keep the romantic comedies rolling. I guess that's kinda fancy, huh?
The Stylists: There were at least 10 different women working both times I went to this shop. There could be 2-4 ladies working on a client's hair at once. They have a system: 1 or 2 will start the braids and then 1 or 2 other ladies will come to start finishing them. If it's one thing to be said of these ladies, its the fact that they all work very well together; whether ensuring the uniformity of a style on a client or making sure everyone is paid to their satifaction, they're a great team. There is definitely a language barrier though. Yes, they do spend the majority of the time you are there speaking in their native tongue. However, I don't think you should take that to mean they are talking about you. I have a background in French so I could pick up on a lot of what they were saying and they were mostly talking about their home lives and plans after work. Pretty normal stuff, but I can understand why some people find it frustrating.
What I will say is IF some of these particular ladies are talking about you, they will make it known. When I went back for the second time with my hair half undone, honey, I received alllll the shade thrown my way. They were too mad I wanted my money back. I mean eye rolls, dirty looks, fingers pointed! Like really?! That's unprofessional yo. While it wasn't all of the ladies working, it was enough to be completely unacceptable.
Pricing: When calling around to different shops, I found prices for box braids to be from $160-200+. Kadi's was on the low end of that. Plus there's a coupon on their website. When I sat down, I confirmed the price that she gave me as we discussed my style. However, after half of my hair was done, they tried to up the price and say the coupon was "built in" to that price. What?! My solution: I only brought enough cash for the price I was told anyway plus a tip. No tricking me into paying more.
Quality of Work: To me, this depends on whether you're concerned with simply the appearance of your style or that AND the health of your hair. If it's simply the appearance, you're good. They're great at giving people beautiful, braided/twisted styles. Their styles are also known to last at least two months without looking old. If you are concerned with the latter though, you might have some issues getting them to give you a style that is both pretty and protects your hair. Yet, it is possible; they redid my hair exactly the way I wanted it when I went back the second time.
|much too long for me|
On the other hand, when I went back the second time, dealing with Kadi and one of the ladies who did my hair was great. Although they were convinced their way was right, they understood the issues I had and my concern for my hair. Apparently, their technique of small parts with lots of hair ensures a styles longevity. (AKA they understood what I wanted the first time and didn't do it because they were more concerned with how long it would last. Rude!) Once they realized that I wanted my hair the way I asked for it and was more concerned with its health than how long the style would last, they redid my hair the way I wanted it. For free, of course. It shouldn't have taken all that tho.
My Recommendation: Surprisingly, I wouldn't say no one should ever go here. The fact that they redid my hair gave me some hope. If you want this kind of style done by a professional, please be willing to stand up for yourself - no matter where you go. Discuss exactly what you want, including an agreed upon price. Bring pictures. Check and triple check throughout the process that it's being done the way you want. Let them know if it's being done too tightly. I recognize that all ladies are not as vocal as I am, however, you should ask yourself: would I rather speak up now or end up unhappy and perhaps crying about my hair loss later? Being quiet is not worth the risk in my eyes. And besides, its YOUR money!
Now, would I go back to them again? Nope. Pretty positive I'll never go back here. The whole experience was just too much trouble for me to ever put myself through again. If they had the ability to redo my hair the way I wanted, not too tight yet still secure, they could've done it right the first time. So, if you live in Columbus, OH, you be the judge of whether you'll pay Kadi a visit or not. And if you're considering going anywhere for a similar service, please take my advice: SPEAK UP!!
That was a lot! Thanks for reading! :)