Tipping is a Spa Girl’s BF

From the moment I stepped into working and officially making money, I had inadvertently stepped myself into the world of the service industry. And, that world brought about my first experience with tips and how they are so important to not only my lifestyle, but for me to actually be able to pay bills and have enough money to barely get out of the poor bracket.

Tips, I have been told by those outside of the service industry, are a gift. They are not required. They are a special something, something for a job well done. Or, even if the job is well done, the tip may not reflect that.

As a dog groomer, a bather/brusher to be more exact, it really was an extra little bonus to get tip. I’d be working on the short-haired dogs that didn’t need to be trimmed or anything, like labs, Rottweilers, great danes, and many other different breeds. The groomers who actually cut, trimmed, and worked on the longer haired dogs got tipped a lot more consistently, though I don’t think ever as much as I’ve seen it within a spa.

Some places pay differently for doing a service. Some people work with commission, which may be 20%-30%-40% off of the price of the service (if not more). Me, I personally work with an hourly base, and tips literally have become my bread and butter. I rarely see cash tips, because I think about 90-95% of my clients tip with credit.

We get this thing called a ‘tip sheet’ that tells us the clients name and how much they tipped. I used to study this like I was going to be quizzed on it later, and memorize all of it, until I realized it was making me crazy. And, it was affecting what I thought of a client, building up resentment, and causing me a lot more harm than good. So, now I force myself to scan over it quickly, seeing how much it was altogether, and I try not to read it, reread it, see who tipped the most, the least, comparing it, and all that.

I try to tell myself some people may not know how much tipping means, some people may not have enough money to give a big tip, or decent one, for that matter. And that I should just appreciate everything that’s given to me. Of course, easier said than done. Some weeks may be amazing with tips, and other times it may just may just be a terrible week with $5-$10 tips.

Being within the service industry it’s all about making the customer, the client, 100% happy, all the time, every time, going above and beyond what you’re asked. Now, I’m all about giving my all to each and every client, changing my style to fit what they might need, but not every client will be happy afterwards. There will be a .1% that you will try your damnedest to get them to relax, to give them all you ask and more, yet they will still not accept it. They are unhappy people who may try to make you just as miserable as they are.

Those kinds of clients are few and far between. Which, is a good thing, because they are super frustrating and draining. I like to dub them ‘energy vampires.’ They just suck the life right from you! Their way of tipping can be hit or miss too, but mainly a miss.

So, when you hand over a tip, don’t be surprised if you see me salivate a bit. I can’t help it. It’s like with a dog and you open up that bag of food, and they stand there and stare up at you like, “Hey, hey, come on… I know you got it! I know you wanna give it to me. Now, now, now, now … yes!” That’s totally me, I can’t stop myself, my eyes might glaze over slightly and I try to play cool, but it’s not easy. Cash tips aren’t taxed, so I love them even more especially when they are put right in my hand. I’m tempted to get a tattoo on the inside of my arm that says “Tip me, pretty please!” but that might just be a tad bit overkill. Err, just a tinch.

When you’re exhausted and you just can’t hide it

Sarah, are you tired? Oh, no, of course not! I just got something in my eye...

I just love it when a manager calls me out on how tired I look. I think every time they do that it puts an extra 10 years on me. And, when the man calls me out on being so tired looking, it adds on another 20 years. So, luckily, both these times are rare because I hide how I’m feeling so well, except these rare occurrences.

And, whenever someone suggests that I should be giving out free chair massages I wish I could stomp on their toe. Or toes. Or whatever will give them the sort of pain chair massages give me because they are much more painful at 10-15 minutes of doing it than a regular table massage at 30, 60, 0r 90 minutes. I can use my body and oils to massage, doing a chair massage is just me squeezing my hands for all that time and hyper extending my wrist.

You dingbat, you. Damn people and their stupid ideas, how about they try and do some little chair massages and see how great they are feeling afterwards. Oh, what’s that? Not feeling great at all and your hands hurt? Exactly my point.

At least I’m somewhat busy tomorrow. Sometimes, it’s just better to keep me in my dark massage cave.