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What is Japanese “OMOTENASHI” Hair Salon?

By Yae Dec 18, 2017


If you’re a foreigner who lives in Japan, most of you may have already experienced a hair cut at hair salons in Japan.
How often do you go to hair salons to maintain your hairstyle? Once a month? Once every 3 months? Hair salons are what everyone needs, and most people go there on a regular basis.

This article will show you what kind of service Japanese hair stylists give you, and what’s the Japanese way of  “OMOTENASHI” which means hospitality at hair salon in Japan.
If you’re just about to look for a hair salon in Japan, you’d better check this article to be well prepared to find your own hair salon.



1. What Kinds of Hair Salon are in Japan?



There are 2 different types of hair salon in Japan which are as follows:


1. Tokoya (Barber)


This is barber according to barber method basis. Main services are haircuts and shaving beards.
Customers are having shampoos by bending forward. You can see the sign for Tokoya by a striped sign pole with red, white and blue colors outside the shop.
There is smoking area as well in the shop and normally middle-aged men (Fifties or sixties) go to Tokoya.
Little bit an old-fashioned image for having hair cut at Tokoya in Japan.

Price Average: 1,000 yen-3,000 yen.


2. Beauty Salon (Biyouin)


This is a hair salon according to hair dresser method basis.
Main services are haircut, hair treatment, hair perm, and hair colouring. There are a lot of more additional services such as head spa, manicure, etc. depends on each Biyouin.
Customers are having shampoos and hair treatments by facing up.
The reason why customers are always having face up style is concerned about running makeups and it’s easier to wash customers’ hair. There are no smoking areas and completely non-smoking only.

There are many Biyouin in Japan in several spots. All you need to do is find your own favorite Biyouin which can make the hairstyle you want.
The price is also different depends on the Biyouin, so you better check first on the internet to look at their hair design pictures on the website.

Price Average: 3,000 yen-20,000 yen.



2.What’s Japanese OMOTENASHI in Biyouin?



The style would be different depending on the Biyouin but there is unforgettable services while you’re getting a haircut at Biyouin such as follows:


1. Welcome drink service



Most of Biyouin offers you welcome drinks such as follows:

1. Coffee/hot or cold
2. Tea/hot or cold
3. Green Tea
4. Soft drinks
※No Alcohol

Normally the staff asks you if you want to drink something, and you can choose one from the above menu. This is the time while you’re waiting for the hair stylist to be ready for you.

Even if you need to wait for just about 2 or 3 min and you can have this service, don’t you feel you’re a special customer?



2. Blanket service on your knees



Normally, the air conditioning is little too strong in Japanese Biyouin and you may feel too cold in summer time.
The staff asks you if you need blanket to put on your knees while sitting and if you need one, you can say “Yes please”

Especially ladies feel little cold staying an hour or 2 hours in Biyouin so most of them are having blankets while they’re having their hair cut.

You don’t want to stay freezing for more than an hour, right?


3. Head and shoulder massage after finishing your hair wash



After finishing your hair washed, the hair stylist will massage your head and shoulders before starting haircut.
This is an amazing moment that makes you feel like you’re in heaven.
What if you go to Biyouin right after finishing your work? If you get massage as service, this heals your stiff shoulders and head.

It’s OMOTENASHI Japanese service that you can have your hair cut with a relaxed feeling every time.

4. Asking customers for bathroom



This kind of question is asked to customers if they’re having services that take a lot of time, like 2 hours or more.
The staff normally asks you if you need to go to bathroom after washing your hair.
Some customers feel they want to go to bathroom but don’t know when is the chance since they’re in middle of hair arrangements.

If the staff asks you this question to give you a chance, don’t you feel relieved that you can go to the bathroom straight away?


5. Free charge to re do your hair



Depends on the Biyouin, but if you had the service of hair colouring or get your hair permed and
somehow you immediately lose the colour or lose your hair curls, you can ask the hair stylist to re do your hair again free of charge.
Not all Biyouin have this service so you better first need to check with your hair stylist if they can offer this service. Some Biyouin ask you first if you would like this free service.


Everyone has their original hair qualities, so even you dye your hair or get permed, not all the people can keep that style.



6. Point service to get free menu


If you find your own favorite hair salon that you want to go repeatedly, there are point card added value services.
Every time when you pay the bill, the staff will add the point based on your selected service. If the point gets to the number of free service menu, you can have free hair cut or free head spa, etc.

You can get this benefit only if you repeatedly go to one hair salon.




Do you now see Japanese OMOTENASHI service of hair salon?
Not only the quality of haircut or hair styling, but also having these additional services, the staff in hair salon catch the heart of customers.
If you get these services all the time when you’re having your hair cut, you feel like you’re having special treatments and start to think you want to go again.
Maybe it’s one of the strategy points of hair salon had created but added value makes people think “Best deal ever!”


Let’s find your own hair stylists in Japan!