Rant/Review of the Aveda Institute in Toronto

I’ve been going to the Aveda Institute in Toronto on 125 King Street East for about 2 years. I started going when I moved back to Toronto from Korea for two reasons. First, the students aren’t afraid to try something different so when I went in with shoulder length hair asking for a pixie cut, I got a cute pixie cut (that doesn’t always happen in other salons, some stylists are afraid of big changes).  And of course, it’s cheaper that any other good salon in Toronto which appealed to me while I was a grad student.  I’ve always been happy with my cuts and service, and have recommended them to friends and co-workers.  

That is, until now.

Now I’m pissed!  Actually, I’m doubly pissed!  First, I’m angry at the absolutely shoddy service I received at my last appointment (Wednesday, June 8th at 11:00 am).  And second, I’m super annoyed that I now have to find a new salon.  I liked going there and it’s difficult to find a good salon with decent prices and imaginative stylists.  Grr… I hate that I was put in this position!

So, what happened?  Well, I booked an appointment to colour my hair thinking I wanted a change for the summer – I was planning on going auburn.  But when I arrived and sat in the chair, I was told that they didn’t book enough time to change my colour.  I booked an appointment to colour my hair and they don’t book enough time, I was flabbergasted!  

The student was apologetic and offered me another service – highlights – which I didn’t want.  She then offered to re-book my appointment – the next available time being Saturday, July 2nd a bloody month away, summer will be half over by then.  I was so angry by this point that I was mute with it, which is totally unusual for me.  In retrospect, I should have asked to speak to her manager/supervisor but no, I just left after booking the July 2nd appointment.  

But the more I thought about it on my walk home, the angrier I got.  It wasn’t my fault that they didn’t book enough time – I have dark hair, they should have either booked 3 hours or asked more questions when I originally booked the appointment.  I wasted two hours of my random day off because of the receptionist’s incompetence – if it takes longer to change certain hair colours than that’s a question that she should have asked!  And the student should have offered me something to make up for my wasted time – not just try to sell me something I didn’t want.  All in all, an incredibly disappointing experience – and one I will share with everyone I talk to.  Horrible customer service from the Aveda Institute on King St. E. in Toronto!!  And my hair still needs to be coloured 🙁  Maybe I should just go back to doing it myself?!?

Cindy Zimmer

Live life to the fullest everyday - this is a the philosophy I try to live by and it's taken me on many adventures. I write about Korean culture from a non-Korean perspective as the editor/founder of ATK Magazine and I'm the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Toronto Korean Film Festival (TKFF). Previously, I ran a Korean-English language exchange group (in Toronto) for 3 years to stay connected to my three years living in Korea as an English teacher. I love music, film, food and sports and write about 3 of the 4.

4 thoughts on “Rant/Review of the Aveda Institute in Toronto

  • July 7, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    You’re an idiot. Plain and simple. IDIOT. Good luck finding a better salon

    • July 8, 2013 at 11:57 am

      Lol, I’m an idiot because I had bad service and thought I’d share it with the world? Care to explain how/why you think I’m an idiot? And I did find a salon I like just as much. But thanks for your kind words 🙂

  • August 14, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    Since you have been coloring your hair for quite some time you knew very well that “Hi I need an appointment for a hair color” and “Hi I need an appointment for a color change to lighter” are NOT the same. I am a master stylist at one of Canada’s top Spas and it happens all the time. Everyday. Busy establishments do not have the time to have five minute conversations on the phone with every client that calls. Simple rule is if you a new customer you need to come in for a preliminary 15 minute consultation. If you are a returning customer, you know EXACTLY how to book your appointment next time as your stylist/educator advised you of such on your previous appointment! Stop being one of those annoying customers and grow up!

    • August 15, 2016 at 7:39 am

      Thanks for your comment but you’re operating under some false assumptions. First, I never said that I colour my hair regularly at that salon, only that I had been getting my hair cut there for the past two years. While it was 5 years ago, I’m pretty sure it was my first time to colour my hair there. And while I do colour my hair regularly, I do it at home as I am rarely happy with colour jobs in salons (where it takes me an hour, not 3). So no, I didn’t know I needed to specify that I was going lighter but that argument is rather moot since it shouldn’t have been my responsibility, it was the salon’s. I was never advised or asked to come in for a preliminary consultation and since I had never had my hair coloured there, I had never received instructions. It’s the salon’s responsibility to ensure good service, not mine to make sure they do their job. Oh, and it wouldn’t have required 5 minutes to get the facts – just one question, have you ever had your hair coloured here before?

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