A lot of times, people will change their hair when they are going through major life changes. I understand the psychology behind it: your hair / appearance is something you can control in a world where many things are not under your power, such as deaths, breakups, etc.
I had a lady come in, very determined to cut off all of her long beautiful hair. As you know, I encourage this type of behavior, but I also want to make sure the person doesn’t regret it. Hair takes a long time to grow back, and even if you get a good cut, you might not be happy with it if it’s shorter than you wanted or are used to.
But this lady was sure. All of it. Off. I felt like the Italian barber cutting Audrey Hepburn’s hair in Roman Holiday (which she actually did on camera, btw). So, as I gave her a cute new ‘do, I asked what spurred the change. Turns out she was supposed to get married… that coming weekend. Something had gone sour (I didn’t press for details) and she said her now ex-fiance had always liked her long hair. Since the wedding was now off (a development of only the night before!), her hair was coming off too. I could see the weight literally (and figuratively) being lifted off her shoulders as I cut it.
I was glad to help her gain some independence, and hopefully some happiness.
(ps- She did donate her hair to Locks of Love, thereby getting a free haircut and helping a good cause.)
A lot of times when I ask “what are we doing to your hair today?” The response will be something like “I want it shorter.” I roll my eyes, because duh, and then work out the details. Recently I got a slightly different answer though.
“I want a haircut, but I don’t want it to look like I got a haircut.”
I wasn’t sure what that meant, so I asked him to clarify. He said he was going to a wedding in a few days, and he knows how fresh haircuts look in pictures. He didn’t want that.
I assured him that as soon as he washes his hair, the edges will lose that sharpness that give that “fresh haircut” look. I kept it to myself that I’ve never heard someone complain that a wedding guest had a fresh haircut. Then I found out that he was the photographer for the wedding. Generally they don’t appear in the pictures at all, by definition. But, I cut his hair just a little and reminded him to wash it, and he seemed satisfied.
We know that brides are generally higher maintenance when it comes to their wedding. I’ve already mentioned the dude that just casually drops that he’s getting married this weekend and needs a new hairstyle. But that was beaten.
Friday, late morning: A 20-something guy comes in for a trim. I can see both by the notes in the computer and the length of his hair that it has only been about a week and a half or two weeks since his last cut. I mention this to him, and he says “Oh, well I’m getting married today, so I need to look cleaned up.”
Wait? Today today? Yeah, at 2:45. Since this was a Friday afternoon thing, I figured he was just heading to the courthouse or something. But no, it was a real shindig, taking place on a rented farm, with people that flew in and everything. Oh, and there will be pictures. He’s just “getting a few last minute things taken care of.” You know, before his wedding.
I guess I can put on my resume that I’ve done wedding hair!
A guy came into the salon the other day looking a little shaggy, but pretty standard. When he sits in my chair, I ask what we’re gonna do. He says he usually has a faux hawk. As I’m looking at his hair, I say, “well you don’t have one now….” as all of his hair is clearly the same length, not longer in the middle (which is the very definition of a faux hawk). “Yeah, the last place I went really screwed it up.” Turns out instead of going to his normal fancy downtown salon, he had gone to a certain unnamed chain salon that offers cheap cuts but also has a time limit on each customer. So rather than take the time to give the customer what he wanted, they just buzzed his head all over and yelled Next!
No problem, I can fix this. But it turns out it was imperative that I fix it…. he is getting married in 2 days. Well, poop. Wedding haircuts are important. Maybe not as important on the groom as on the bride, but still. So I took my sweet time with the cut, and kept checking with him every step of the way to make sure we were on track. When I finished, he seemed very pleased. Not just seemed – was very pleased. He affirmed the cut was good enough to get married with, and that made my day.