IT GROWS BACK At Bumble and Bumble, a supervisor keeps an eye on an apprentice’s work. By SUSAN CATTO Published: April 8, 2009 JESSICA LENNON never minded paying $140 (plus $40 tip) for a high-end cut at the Frédéric Fekkai salon on Fifth Avenue in New York. But after months of bad economic news, Ms. Lennon, a 24-year-old publicist, recently felt reluctant to make her next appointment. “I started thinking, is it really worth it? Do I have $180 to spend right now on my hair?” she said. She turned to Craigslist and Web sites of upscale salons to find training nights, calling around until she lucked into an appointment at Sally Hershberger Downtown, which offers free trainee cuts on Tuesday nights. Surrounded by novices working on bewigged mannequin heads, Ms. Lennon calmed herself with a mantra: “It’s just hair. It will grow back.” Ms. Lennon (who ended up with a cut she loved) is among the many professionals turning to the inexpensive or free services offered at aesthetic colleges and training salons. Beauty schools have long been popular with students and retirees. Now some schools are reporting a surge of first-time clients, many of whom say they can no longer afford their usual salon appointments.
Local options: In the SF Bay area "The School" by Paul Mitchell is a great option. Go to http://www.paulmitchelltheschool.com/pmts/locations/index.cfm?SetLocation=21 or call (925)691-7687 to ask about their service menu.