Sunday 5 September 2010

Hair Affairs 3 A trip to the hairdresser

If you have been following this blog for any time you will know that I loathe going to the hairdresser. I've been avoiding it for some months. The last time I went was to a small establishment just round the corner from our house. The work was competent but I was really an accessory to the exciting life of the salon. The staff chattered to each other and planned their social lives and proposed holidays. It was very interesting and within minutes I knew who was related to whom, who was straight and who gay and what they planned to do that evening after work but it was hardly personal service. The woman cutting my hair might as well have been practising on a dummy! And I had to suggest 'feathering' my fringe or I would have emerged with something like a pudding basin cut!

Well, this week I decided I really must get my hair sorted out. I'd been trimming my fringe so that I looked almost human and could see where I was going but the rest had grown very long and was increasingly difficult to contain in the claw that keeps hair off my face. The girl who greeted me was tall, slim, young with a beautiful smile. She proceeded to drag her fingers through my hair which was when I discovered that she had very sharp nails. Having established what she would do – 'a long bob, slightly longer at the sides with some long layers' – she washed my hair. That was okay though at times I felt I was having not just a shampoo but a shower too.

The shampooing completed I was damply led like a lamb to slaughter to a seat in front of a large, unforgiving mirror. She attempted to 'comb out' – the jargon is so obvious! – but met tangles galore. Then she spent some minutes trying to extricate her rings from my hair. The cutting was quite an experience! My head was pushed forwards, backwards, from one side to the other. Occasionally, realising I was capable of independent movement, she asked me to move my head and each request was attended by an endearment. I don't care to be called 'darling' and 'sweetheart' by someone I've only just met, particularly a young person who thinks I'm as old as Methuselah and probably short of a marble or two.

By now my head was aching. The salon was full and hot and I just wanted to get out and go home, but I wasn't 'finished' yet. Actually, the stylist was only just beginning. The hair drying came next – she was very vigorous and pulled the plug out three times. She wasn't so much blow-drying my hair as creating a small wind tunnel and once again my head was pulled from one side to the other, her finger nail catching in my ear. I wondered if any of the other clients or staff had noticed what was going on as I was yanked from vertical to horizontal.

The final trim was interesting. There was so much static electricity in my hair that it was flying out as though I'd grabbed a live wire. The bits the young woman managed to capture and cut flew up onto her lip gloss and her eyelashes. More brushing ensued but her attempts to make my hair obediently curl under failed completely so she resorted to much hair spray and a crunching, crushing action I'd never seen before. This method was also unsuccessful and my limp hair hung resolutely straight and unrepentant. The back looked reasonable, but she'd cut off more than I had asked her to and it is barely possible to put it up without scraping it tightly off my face, giving me an instant and unflattering facelift.

Much, much later as I relived the whole astonishing episode I realised that she had neglected to use conditioner on my hair. It's a safe bet that I shall not be asking for that stylist again!



  1. Oh, this is TOO funny. Just think, if you enjoyed visiting the hairdresser, you wouldn't have stories to tell. Or, if you did, they wouldn't be as much fun. I love to have my hair shampooed and cut, especially shampooed, but there my story ends.
    Still, it sounds like you endured torture in order to provide your blog-followers with laughter. Certainly not necessary for you to put yourself through all that, plus being sweethearted and darlinged throughout. But I must say I loved the idea of hairs sticking to her lip gloss and eyelashes.
    Now you can rest until it's time to have it done again. Maybe you can find a gorgeous young man to do it, and perhaps the sweethearting and darlinging won't hurt as much.
    Thanks for the giggle!

  2. Your description is hilarious!
    And, unfortunately, it rings true to me and my past experiences.
    That's why I simply wear my hair long and in a pony tail, getting Steve to trim it once every few months. I may not look that good, but at least I don't have to suffer through the beautician experience.

  3. Hmmm...I can almost hear your hair heaving a sigh of relief now that their frustration and anger have found a vent!
    Poor them!

    'as old as Methuselah and probably short of a marble or two'...Ha ha ha!!How I wish that young girl could read this blog and particularly this post!!

    P.S: Hi Aunt Janice,Isn't it Gus's birthday today?
    Wishing him a Happy Happy bday and all the treats and chewys he wishes for.
    wags from Buddy n Ginger

  4. Let alone not asking for that stylist just don't go there again-it sounds awful! She sounds rude and incompetent and shouldn't be cutting hair. I feel exactly the same about the hairdressers as you and have had my share of bad experiences over the years. THe last haircut though was so pleasant and I must go back soon to contribute to her business! THe only thing I can say in commiseration is at least it grows again!

  5. If it weren't true it would be funny! So sorry for your trials. I found a stylist I really like but he is expensive. I go just so I don't have to put up with the nonsense like you experienced.

  6. "resolutely straight and unrepentant'

    That's brilliant.

    what a funny story--sorry it happened to you, my dear. But funny funny funny! lol

  7. I am blessed with good strong thick hair that with careful cutting will be obedient most of the time. I had to find a new 'master cutter' a couple of months ago and she has been trying to undo the damage the last one did. It seems to be working. I only go once every five weeks, the rest of the time I can take care of it myself. It's not long. The cutting is expensive though! $35!!

  8. And THIS is why I cut my own hair, my mother's hair and my husband's hair. However, someday I wouldn't mind trying a beautician again. Then again, after reading your post, I'll wait awhile.


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