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Toni & Guy - dreadful problems. Any help/ideas please?

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Hello, I need advice about whether to take action against a Toni & Guy salon. I saved hard to take my 12 year old daughter there for a birthday treat following an illness. I explained she had been ill and that she had been experimenting with hair colour so it wasn't in the best condition - I explained this several times clearly.

We chose the hair colour from their colour book and explained the cut.They applied the colour, which was meant to be a golden blonde, and it came out the lightest bleached blonde. I am very bad at complaining and so I paid £156. My daughter was devastated and after a few minutes to recover outside the salon we went back in & explained that it was the wrong colour. They re-did it all again and it still wasn't right - brownish with gingery roots. By this time my daughter had been sitting in the chair for 6 hours, was tired & hungry and unhappy.Her scalp was sore from all the chemicals they had used. The communication was appalling and there was no care or sensitivity. They allowed us to walk out at the end without a word. They had their bags & coats to go home.

I e-mailed the head office and explained it all. They offered to re-do it at the salon but I explained that they'd already done that and it still wasn't right.I asked for a part refund in the form of vouchers so that we could go to a different salon. They refused this although they said we could go to another salon to have it re-corrected.

This went on and on and I have become more and more upset. As it was time to return to school after the holidays I did her hair myself. I did keep requesting that they part refund me and they kept refusing saying they had done everything they could.

I then referred everything back to the salon owner/franchisee sending her copies of the e-mails and putting my complaint in writing. That was 2 weeks ago and I have had no response at all.

I am a sole carer to my disabled husband and £156 is an enormous amount of money. I feel as if they have taken my money and given appalling service without any care for their customer.

Do you think I have a case to go to the petty claims court? I think it would be free as we are on income support?

Thanks for reading

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i dont think it would be free i am sorry to say, but i think you have a case if you did not recieve the right colour. maybe you should talk to office of fair trading people, they should set you on track. the email is oft @ ecgroup.co.uk

 

i got this information from the internet, i hope it is of use.

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I don't believe you have a strong case, unfortunately. Everyone is an individual - this is not like painting a wall where known issues can be addressed. Colours can shift when different hair bases are used - I recall an experiment where the same colur was applied to 6 individuals, and I don't think the resultant colouring was the same in any two of the subjects.

 

Where the resulting colur does not meet your expectations, you need to provide them with an opportunity to re-do the treatment in an effort to meet your expectations. If at this point they rejected you, then your pursuit would be justified. But they tried again, and without further charge in an effort to provide you with the colour you required. The fact that they were not able to meet your requirements exactly does not mean they should be bound to refund all the money paid, perhaps only the colouring element - so if you go the Small Claims route, and they give evidence that there have been few (or no issues) with other customers, the problem switches to the subject's hair type - and as they tried to fix this at their cost, they will be seen to have done all they could.

 

You would need to find a judge that holds their proceedures as unreasonable, and this many not be the case.

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HI, thanks for your input. Thought you'd be interested to know that Trading Standards were very interested in my story and think that I have a strong case esp as I have photos. There is a big difference between golden blonde and practically bleached white!

Also it would be free to go to court as I'm on particular qualifying benefits.

Trading Standards were brilliant and talked me though the letter before action and the whole process. Thoroughly recommend them.

Thanks

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As you'll find on this site, we don't hold much respect for Trading Standards, as they may be well meaning, there are some things they probbly didn't tell you. So, we'll get it over with now - but regarding your comments;

 

(1) Trading Standards have no 'interest' per se. They will do nothing on your behalf apart from send letters. They will not assist in pre-court, or court action. They are usually staffed by volunteers, and any optinion expressed will be personal to the person you spoke with, someone else in the same office can have a different view.

 

(2) The difference between golden blonde an bleached white is subjective. An individua's hair colouring can and does affect the resulting finished result. If she was already fair, then a product formulated to actually change from a darker base would probably be more 'golden'. As it noted earlier, this isn;t like painting a white wall, any colour variation has to include the starting colour base as a variant.

 

(3) Because you are on benefits doesn't mean you are not exposed to risk. You may save on the £50 it costs to raise the action, however should you lose, the salon can (and probably will) seek to recover its costs from you. Although these are capped to a maximum of around £100, if TS did not advise you of this, it calls into question their expertise and worth.

 

(4) The letter before action will be their last input to the matter. They will refuse to assist once the documents are served.

 

Whilst going to court should never be undertaken lightly, if you win, great - you get what you want. But equally, you can lose - and benefits or not, your salon has every right to seek repayment of their additional costs. They will recover this from you, as part of the court process you initiate. If it is a gamble you cannot afford, I'd bite the bullet and pass if the LBA does nothing.

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Oddly, I find myself disagreeing with Buzby on the subject of Trading Standards.

 

(1) Trading Standards have no 'interest' per se. They will do nothing on your behalf apart from send letters. They will not assist in pre-court, or court action. They are usually staffed by volunteers, and any optinion expressed will be personal to the person you spoke with, someone else in the same office can have a different view.

 

Trading Standards are the consumer protection division of a Local Authority, usually at County level. Many Trading Standards staff have professional qualifications, and staff are employees of the local authority, not volunteers. Trading Standards have a statutory interest in ensuring that traders comply with legislation. Trading Standards can and do prosecute companies for trading offences. In addition, Trading Standards collate information for the Office of Fair Trading.

 

Maybe Buzby really meant the CAB, but engaged mouth before brain...

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I actually feel that I have been robbed so will take this as far as I can. The main point I made when I originally complained to the salon was their dreadful lack of communication. They simply didn't communicate properly with us, even when we said things like 'will my hair be this colour' they said 'yes' and didn't say anything about variations and differences depending upon what an individual's hair is like.

Thanks both of you for your useful opinions.

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Yes, I did mean CAB, however TS is still playing at their task. They retain their statutory duties as before (previously called 'Weights & Measures') in this their task of 'policing' standards of trading is absolute, as is their ability to prosecute. However, if this is to be an errant trader in dealings with consumers, my comments remain true - they will not prosecute, as it is not in their interests to do so. They will often refer the complainant to CAB for advice on a legal pursuit - and is very easy in my local council as they both share the same office space (effectively blurring the lines of demarcation of who does what).

 

However, providing a full picture is the pros and cons of court action are disclosed, they will have provided a fair picture, but if not - ten their advice is not to be trusted!

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