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To consider using a fake name?

(27 Posts)
Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 11:30:23

Hi, hold up there im not a con artist lol.
I'm a mobile hairdresser, fully qualified in NVQ level 3 hairdressing and did 2 years of extension training under a big name salon that i wont mention, I have been mobile for under a year going to peoples homes and doing extensions, cutting, coloring you name it i do it! However in the last 3-4 months ive had several incidents happen that have really shaken me up, One was about a month ago (Posted about it) a woman threatening to contact police and trading standards when i "Messed up her daughters hair" (Even tho i spoke to the 17 year old daughter on her own and daughter said she loved her hair and didnt know what was going on), In the end i gave a refund i couldnt get the woman to calm down and i couldnt just walk out as she had her arm blocking the door. For the sake of £60 I can deal!
Then a few days later i went to see a lady with bleach damaged hair, gave her a lovely keratin treatment and trim to help strengthen her hair and get rid of some split ends as her hair was too short to cut all of the splitting out. I did so and then came home to a phonecall off this girls "Family member" saying i'd wrecked her hair and she looks like a boy. I demanded to know what was wrong with her hair and the person hung up on me and i never heard a peep again.
Just 2 weeks ago i went allllll the way to south England to fit a ladies microloop extensions as she had been cancelled on by her usual hairdresser (I wonder why wink )
I did it for her no problem.
Next morning i got a call from her stating the bonds were falling out and she had nearly none left. I offered to come out and refit the hair, no she didnt want that, I offered to come out and remove the remaining hairs and give a partial refund (Perfectly reasonable IMO) she said no, she wanted a refund by paypal for x email address i explained that i do not have paypal (I do but she doesnt need to know that) and I won't refund without seeing the hair first hand.
She then started yelling insults down the phone at me and every hour that day i got an abusive text full of threats of trading standards, police (Arrest me for what?!) That night i drove out to Hereford and went to her home (With a partial refund at hand) and knocked on her door. She wasn't expecting me and came to the door herself.... all of her extensions were in place perfectly and she had lovely long locks. very clearly none had fallen out. I just walked away and came home and again never heard a peep.
this has happened alot and sometimes if i dont comply with the customers demand for a refund (If i see no need to refund) things can escalate into abusive texts, phone calls and even once someone finding my address, slashing my tyres and banging on the door at 2am (Although I thought that one might actually have some form of mental illness as she didnt seem quite right in the first place)
I asked a mobile hairdresser (Who has 12 yrs experience) for some help and advice. Her advice was to "Lie" To people. I.e if someone asks where you live say the nearest town or city but not where you actually live, use a fake name, Use a cheap nokia and disposable sim in said nokia (I already have a workphone). Wibu to actually do this? it seems to much easier to just have a separate life or persona away from work. Unlike your normal deskjob it seems wherever i go my work follows and id just like to be able to be myself at home not worrying the phone will go off or someone will just turn up at my house (Although ive never given my address out)

minibmw2010 Mon 05-Jan-15 11:41:06

Where are you advertising and finding these clients? They all sound a bit mad. I've got a mobile hairdresser and I've never heard her come out with any stories even slightly similar.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 11:45:42

Online mostly, via a fb page (Set up directly for work), twitter and classified ads. Maybe its just me lol! I do see lovely people more than the bad ones, i'd say its 1 out of 50 or so clients that are bad to varying degrees this is just the worst ones.

Jackie0 Mon 05-Jan-15 11:55:57

Maybe you see more than your fair share of nutters because you are quite busy and see a lot of clients generally .
You need to think about your personal safety.
Use a separate fb business page, not your personal one.
No one needs to know your address.
Maybe think about a business name., Suzy Styling , then you'll just be Suzy rather than Suzanne Smith for example.
Make sure someone always knows your whereabouts and how long you expect to be there .

Sprink Mon 05-Jan-15 11:55:58

Get a PO box for correspondence if necessary rather than giving fake address/town.

I understand your concerns but wouldn't be happy that someone coming into my home was lying to me.

Tough one.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:00:32

I've never given out my address, Ever, I just say the town in live in if asked.
I do have a page for hair and hair only, I don't use myown fb to advertise.
My partner drives me to every job so he can take the car home and is given a rough time to expect me to be done, its been pre agreed that he can come and knock on the door if im over half an hour after my expected time of "Arrival" just to check everything is ok and when i'll be done, hes never needed to do so so far. I dont have mail correspondence so a PO box is a bit silly (it'd never get used!) only once did anyone find out where i live and im still not sure how she did it, although i do live in a small town.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:02:09

I don't want to lie to everyone as ive met so many lovely people that i genuinely feel happy to come to there homes and provide services. Even offering certain offers and discounts to long term customers, but the Bad clients are what scares me. I've always hated working in salons (Long story) and there are no jobs around right now for salon work but i dont think i can be mobile much longer as the worry is too much.

gamerwidow Mon 05-Jan-15 12:09:52

I think you should do whatever you need to keep safe. I would keep the personal information you share with clients to an absolute minimum I.e. First name only & no address information. Have a business page , email and profile for your Facebook separate to your own personal profile and use a separate phone for work calls.

LaurieFairyCake Mon 05-Jan-15 12:15:01

Uhuh.

Are you aware the woman you did those extensions on was on here just before Christmas saying they'd all fallen out?

It's definitely the same story. So be careful as she's going to notice you on here.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:16:14

GW, I do that but i still worry now due to everything thats happened,Maybe im just being silly but i do suffer with (extremely mild) anxiety, im fine day to day but overworry and overthink so much, gah.

WeAreEternal Mon 05-Jan-15 12:16:47

You are well within your rights to be vague about your address, such as "I live in a little village just outside Manchester" or "I live near Manchester".
You are also right to have a separate phone number.

Using a fake name is taking it too far though. You can always say "Im Blackout from Hair by Blackout" and just not mention your surname, or use a nickname or shortened version of your name "I'm Blacky from Hair by Blacky".
Using a fake name and fake details could open you up to all kinds of problems. What would you do if something went wrong and you needed to make a claim on your insurance, how would you explain that you were using a fake name? or if you had to deal with the police?

Using a fake name and fake details just looks like you are trying to hide something.
If you are simply trying to avoid bad customers coming to your house and making your life difficult just avoid telling customers personal details. dont say exactly where you live, avoid saying your full name, dont give them your personal phone number.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:17:20

Laurie fairycake,I doubt it was the same woman, highly doubt in fact as the woman in question didnt have any extensions fall out!

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:18:55

Although i think i did see that post! lol.
WeAreEternal, A shortened name is a good idea, dont know how i can shorten my real name, though!

LaurieFairyCake Mon 05-Jan-15 12:21:24

No, she was claiming they did on here. The only thing that's making me think of it is:

1. You didn't know her previously and it was an emergency hair extension as she'd been let down

2. Hereford - same area mentioned.

Namechange, get better clients - you need regular, normal one - you seem to be servicing scumbags grin

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:23:41

I just found the post, Same area mentioned as the lady who had the extensions was in south wales and the hairdresser was in hereford, so opposite location, However it is uncanny XD
I see all sorts of different clients, men, women, children and only a select handful are "Bad eggs",

WeAreEternal Mon 05-Jan-15 12:29:31

There is a shortened version of pretty much every name, some are not even close to the actual name.
I have a colleague that goes by Elle, her name is actually Helen. Before meeting her I had always considered Helen to be one of those names that cant be shortened, now I don't think their really are any names that can't be shortened.

minibmw2010 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:41:46

Fake name won't work if your client wants to pay by cheque?

notagainffffffffs Mon 05-Jan-15 12:51:24

I get exactly the same smile hairdresser here too. Are you fully covered insurance wise? If you get any complaints etc that dont add up just refer them to your insurance company and immediately stop contact. Your insurance 99/100 will side with you and eventually tye loon will move on to someone else.
Deffo have a work phone and a personal phone too.

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 12:54:51

I'm fully covered notagain smile I have to be its too big of a risk not to be, Cant say i have ever handed anyone over to my insurance company though (Good idea) I already have 2 phones x

Jackie0 Mon 05-Jan-15 13:30:24

Well I think the consensus here is that its going too far to make up a fake name and it would seem you already have other precautions in place so I don't know what to advise really confused

Try to have an air of confidence about you , even if you have to ' fake it till you make it'.
If you are a tad anxious or uncertain some people will take advantage.
I'm self employed too and I'm still on that particular learning curve.

Szeli Mon 05-Jan-15 14:10:32

many of my mobile peers use 'nickname' 'maiden name' and have business accounts registered in that name so cheques are no problem. I intend if i ever get wed to keep my work name as above and personally have 'full name' 'married name' do wish id chosen something other than my name to trade with tho initially.
clients trying to adf me on fb etc does my tree in!

Tutt Mon 05-Jan-15 14:19:30

Why on earth are you going to people who you don't know? People who are not connected to you in any shape or form, word and mouth etc.
For 1 it isn't safe?
Hairstylist/salon owner for 30 years plus 15 years mobile and never once had any of this BUT never advertised or saw strangers.

I may come across as rude BUT I do really truly think you are putting money/other people before your own safety and proving this with the experiences you are having!

gotasecretcanyoukeepit Mon 05-Jan-15 14:21:11

Szeli, it might be that they've accidentally added all their email addresses - I had that, my nail technician is about my age and lovely but I wouldn't ever cross the boundary and add her on facebook until I did it by accident thanks to adding people via email.

pluCaChange Mon 05-Jan-15 14:38:44

It sounds as though you could also do with deciding not to do underage people's hair, as that seems to have been one source of trouble. If your "client" is underage, your real "client" is actually the parent, and these seem to like throwing theur weight around! shock

Blackout234 Mon 05-Jan-15 15:05:20

Tutt, its nice of you to say that however I dont have nearly as many friends and family to earn a decent wage when it comes to only seeing people i know. I don't have enough money to run my own car least of all a business of my own and next to no salons are hiring right now, especially not someone whos 20 weeks pregnant because id be leaving for mat leave before i even got a real feel for the job! you're going off like im sleeping with strangers for money.
I make my job as safe as i possibly can by having someone drive me there,sometimes even waiting outside depending on distance and what im doing and giving said person a time to expect me and letting him know what to do if im not out at the time expected. Sure, I could be murdered in the 4 hrs it takes me to do someones extensions but you'd have to be pretty bloody stupid to do that seeing as all appointments are arranged over electronic communications and my partner has all of the same details I do.

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