According to the WSJ, the recession has caused more people to take to cutting their own hair. Sometimes with disastrous results, according to the lead ...
Jane Angelich used to joke about her husband, Mark, going bald. Then with one faulty flick of the wrist, she made it happen.
Mr. Angelich had begun cutting his own hair to save money. His wife offered to trim a spot in the back he couldn't reach. So she picked up an electric razor, "put a little too much oomph into it," and carved out a "giant chunk" of hair. The fix: She shaved his entire head.
The downturn has created a nation of cost, and hair- cutters. To help pare their budgets, more Americans are bypassing the salon and opting to lop off their own locks. The results, can be shear disaster -- clogged drains, fresh cowlicks and crooked trims.
Personally, I have been going more often and since I found my current barber, spending more. My clippers only get the occasional use to trim the beard and are no longer used to cut my hair (which I did for a couple of years to save some money).
So, has the recession caused you (or your partner) to cut back on their grooming services?
If you would be so kind as to pull your tongue in...oh, wait, never mind. Dog picture. Got it.
Remember those home hair-cutting devices in the 1970s? They were essentially a comb embedded in a razor. I went to a barber who said, 'We like those. People use them, and then come to us to repair the damage'. I am certain that the home hair cutting equipment available is much more sophisticated and capable these days, but how many people do have disastrous results that they need a barber to fix?
To answer the other part of the question, the post-election recession has not affected me or my barber. The rates I pay have increased only slightly, and I still give a forty percent tip (It does not hurt that she's a hottie, either). I shopped around. Neighbourhood establishments often cost twice as much as the hair cutterys in the mall, but I was persistent by finding her in the rows of other barbers, who happen to be mostly women. When I find one I like, I latch on and keep coming back, even calling ahead to ask for her schedule. She did well the first time, and subsequent visits, she 'learned' me better and fine-tuned her approach. If a service is worthwhile, it is worth being consistent and being a regular customer.
I've been cutting my own hair off and on since 1966; for the last 13 years I've been doing it almost exclusively. Back in the '70s and '80s, I used one of those combs with the razor in it. Got quite proficient with it very quickly. Back in '96, I got a buzz cut and bought and electric trimmer. I give myself a buzz cut every other week.
But here's the best part: For the last year, I've been paying myself for the haircuts. Every time I cut my hair, I put money in the haircut jar.
I have only once allowed a non-barber to cut my hair. the result was the worst looking haircut I have ever had. I will no longer trust anyone else with the task. My barbering schedule hasn't changed due to the recession, though.
Making an investment in good equipment, and then developing the skills to use them (or having someone available to use their skills on you and others), obviously pay off in the long run. Some of us do not have that option, glad it worked for you.
OK, I'm going to admit this..............I actually was going to a female "hair stylist".................for the past 25 years or so. Somewhere along the line I was persuaded by my then wife to try her "stylist" and I would be forever in her good graces. I went and yes for some reason I stayed. Maybe it was the feel of a woman working my hair or the fact that I was pacifying my then wife, I just don't know. This past March, as I was sitting in her chair listening to another inane commentary about someone from my town, it struck me that this was not comfortable. I was paying her to "style" my hair and in the mean time being berated by her for my clothing, vehicles, girlfriend, and just about everything else. I walked out of there for the last time and when my hair got long enough I went back to the barbershop where I had my first hair cut 50+ years before, and believe it or not, there was the same chair that they used when I got my first haircut!! My cut cost $10 and took a grand total of 10 minutes. It saved me nearly $12 and a whole lot of brainless chatter. I was able to really talk with the barber and understand what he was saying! It was like finding an old friend that I had missed for nearly 30 years. So while I haven't started cutting my own hair, and won't, I find myself saving money and getting my hair cut more often and with less hassle. I'll never go back to "styling" salons again!! Another step to regaining my Manliness!!
There is nothing inherently wrong with having a women cut your hair. My current barber is a female. The key part is that they are a barber (cutting only men's hair) and not a stylist (who cuts, dyes, & styles anyone but mainly females).
I have been unable to find a more traditional barber shop that will charge less than double what I am paying now at the mall shop. Perhaps I am jaded because she's a babe, but I am staying put because she does the cutting the way I need. My sanctuary is elsewhere. Still, I feel that I am missing out on the experience of what you are describing.
My current shop has two people that cut hair ... one man and one woman ... and only men go there. They even have a barber pole.
Honestly, it is rare that I have been in there when there is more than one or two other people waiting, but on those few times, the conversation was very similar to what I experienced when I was young at the barbershop. But, it really depends on what you mean by "conversation that men like"?
My favourite barber was a woman (she insisted on the term). Her replacement is a woman, and there are several women cutting men's hair at the big shop in the mall. On the other side of the partition, they do all that other fancy stuff.
The recession has not stopped me from going to the barber. My wife was a hairdresser, I have gone to the barber about maybe 6 to 8 times in 28 years of marriage. My wife does a better job of cutting my hair, she does not get in a hurry.
It is cut more evenly and she uses scissors. I am high maitenance. She does a better job than anyone else I suppose because how I look reflects on her personally....I LOOK GOOD...Dan Mason
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