If you’re in desperate need of some pampering and need booking flexibility, checkout Groupon BeautyNow, a new service from Groupon that lets you book same-day beauty appointments right from the Groupon app!
This post was sponsored by Groupon, however, all opinions and especially my extreme level of excitement are purely my own.
I was terrible about getting my hair cut before I had kids, but now that I have two of them? Well, let’s put it this way: The last time I had a haircut, we were still living in Chicago and I only had one child, which means it was more than seven months ago. In that time, my hair has gotten ridiculously long and unruly and I’ve taken to wearing it in a braid most of the time just to keep it out of the way.
Because my hair was so much longer than I ever intended, I decided to do something drastic and cut off enough hair so that I could donate it. As much as I love long hair, I wasn’t sure my hair would ever be that long again, so I decided to do something drastic.
With a cut style in mind, I logged into the Groupon app and went to the “Salon & Spa Booking” section. BeautyNow is a new service from Groupon where you can reserve same-day beauty appointments. Through Groupon BeautyNow you can book salon appointments, manicures and pedicures, and you can even book massages! Many of the top nail and beauty salons and spas in Chicago are available, including a few of my favorites like the spa and fitness center at the Four Seasons Hotel, DreamDry (an awesome place to get a blowout), and the spa at the Wit Hotel.
As much as I wanted to make a trip back to Chicago for a couple of hours of pampering, I decided to check out some of the local places in the Chicago suburbs that had partnered with Groupon BeautyNow. I was in desperate need of a new stylist – someone who actually knows how to work with curly hair – and decided to book an appointment at a salon near me called Urban Style Salon & Spa, mainly because I was missing Chicago and liked that the word “urban” was part of the name.
Booking the appointment was a cinch. If you’re based in Chicago, download the Groupon app and select “Salon & Spa Booking” at the top to start booking!
Once you’ve pulled up the app, tell them where you’re located and what you’re looking for, and you’ll get a list of salon options. You can book same-day or future appointments.
I was able to book my appointment at Urban Style Salon & Spa in approximately 30 seconds thanks to Groupon BeautyNow’s easy-to-use interface. I entered the time and date that I was looking for and then clicked Request Appointment. I was informed how much my appointment would cost and asked how much I’d like to tip because, yes, you actually pay via the app. (Can I get a happy dance from those of you who, like me, never have cash on hand for tipping?!)
Once the appointment is booked on your end, you just have to sit back and wait for the salon to confirm it on their end. One thing I really like about Groupon BeautyNow is that they go out of their way to make sure you receive updates about your appointment. I could go to the Groupon app to get updates, they sent me text messages, AND they even sent email updates.
I was so excited to go to the salon the next day that I felt like I was counting down the hours until my husband would get home from work. I was in desperate need of some “me” time and that’s exactly what I got.
My stylist was Alex, who just so happened to be the owner. Lucky me! The first thing I did was pull out a couple of inspiration photos for what I hoped she could achieve and I also told her I wanted to donate my hair. It turns out that I made the perfect decision in choosing this salon because they have a partnership with the exact place I planned on donating my hair, Children with Hair Loss. The reason I was drawn to this company was three-fold:
- They take color-treated hair (most hair donation places won’t)
- They’ll take as few as eight inches (most places want 12)
- They’re located in Ann Arbor, home of my beloved University of Michigan (Go Blue!)
Alex told me that one of the main reasons they chose to partner with Children with Hair Loss is because it’s one of the only organizations that doesn’t charge the families for the wigs that they make. Awesome, right?
So, like I said, I was in desperate need of a haircut. As much as I love long hair, I don’t think mine had ever gotten this long before.
I obviously have naturally curly hair, and finding people that actually know how to cut curly hair has been a lifelong challenge. I’ve had many bad haircuts in my life because so many people just don’t know how to work with curls. Thankfully, Alex was not one of those people. She gave me a dry haircut, which is the recommended way of cutting curly hair. When you cut the hair dry, you get a better sense of what it will look like than if it’s cut wet because wet curly hair is so different from dry curly hair.
While Alex was cutting my hair, we also had a long chat about using organic hair products. I have the opportunity to test out a lot of beauty products, and while some of them are organic, most are not. Alex really got me thinking, though, about how the products we put on our bodies can end up in our bloodstreams. It turns out that the founder of Aveda, Horst Rechelbacher, sold the company to Estée Lauder Companies in 1997, and then went on to create a new organic hair care company, Intelligent Nutrients. Fun fact: Alex actually had the opportunity to meet Horst at his farm in Wisconsin and talk to him about his vision before he passed away. Because of her commitment to organic hair care products, Intelligent Nutrients is the primary brand used at Urban Style Salon & Spa.
How crazy is this difference in salon photos? My long hair lacked all life, but Alex’s meticulous cut basically made me look like an entirely different person.
While I was mid-haircut, I received notification from Groupon BeautyNow that I had been charged for my haircut – tip included. Thanks to this, I could hop up and leave as soon as my cut was complete.
But before I left, I needed to fill out the form so I could donate my hair to Children with Hair Loss. I would have been happy to mail the hair myself, but because of their partnership, Alex and the team at Urban Style Salon & Spa took care of mailing it in for me.
Curious about the results of my new short curly haircut?
Alex gave me exactly the cut I was looking for. I’m not going to share the example images because of copyright issues, but this is THE cut I wanted.
Of course, how hair looks immediately after a visit to the salon is one thing, but it’s more important, in my opinion, to see how your hair looks the next day, without a stylist’s help.
Turns out we are all good there, too.
The next day I was easily able to recreate the style! As a bonus, I was able to use less shampoo, conditioner, and styling products than I had in years.
I’m not sure if I’ll keep the short hair forever, but for now, I’m really digging it. Alex did an amazing job with the cut and all of that hair will hopefully help a kid who is going through a rough time. As for me, I’m thankful for the new look and that Groupon BeautyNow made it so easy to book a styling appointment on a whim. The next time I need a cut I will DEFINITELY log back on to Groupon BeautyNow and book with Alex.
Ready to give Groupon BeautyNow a whirl? If you have the Groupon app on your phone, click here to go straight to the experience. Then use the promo code “SGD10” to get $10 off your first appointment!