The Hairdressers

The walls of my hairdressers are painted a soothing combination of coffee and cream.

An abundance of large mirrors throws the morning light around the salon.

Soft music filters through the air, intermingling with snippets of small talk.
He didn’t?”
“Going anywhere nice?”
Words riding on the waves of warm hairdryer blown air.

The rustle of a newly laundered gown.
“Take a seat at the basins”
The splash of a shower of water.
“Is that ok for you?”

The aroma of fresh cappuccino mixes with the heady, heavy scent of shampoo and the occasional pungent odour of colour chemicals.

The ringing of the salon phone punctuates the gentle energy of this place.
Phone conversations are short.

The flipping of magazine pages.

Cocooned in this feminine world, a younger me used to feel claustrophobic and bored. But now I relax here and relish the reviving therapy and the alchemy taking place at the hands of the stylist.

I bounce, in time with my newly brown again hair out the door, better able to face the world.


So – do you love or loathe the hairdressers?

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Writing and Talking.... on the radio, on the telly and in the papers.

4 thoughts on “The Hairdressers”

  1. I hate the first time you go to a new place; it's so nerve-wracking! But now that I'm happy with a 'safe' place again, it's nice to be girly for a while and not think serious thoughts.

  2. Ooooh I don't like hairdressers! I have only ever visited one twice in my life and both times were traumatic enough to stop me going back!

    1st time, I was about 15 and had long, long hair, down to about the bottom of my back. It was cut straight across the bottom and I had an idea that I wanted it to be gently curved instead, I only wanted enough taken off of the length to be able to achieve this magical curve.

    A while later I emerged with a shoulder length pageboy hairstyle that I hadn't asked for and definately didn't want!! My long flowing locks had gone and I cryed all the way home.

    Fast forward to me at 20 thinking I would really love a 'shaggy perm' that was all the rage – I dreamed of my sultry tousled look and with a friend plucked up courage to visit another hairdressers.

    A few hours later I was walking home, taking an obscure route so as not to recognised after flatly REFUSING to get on the bus.

    My AFRO was unfortunate to say the least. After tearful phonecalls to my Mum at work she bought home a hair straightening kit that only enlarged the afro to a dandelion head full of frizz, I pulled on a woolly hat and fought depression while vowing never to visit again! – and I haven't.

    My sister cuts my hair, I colour it. Now I must go any recover from the awful memories.

    Glad you enjoyed it though. 😉

  3. Perfectly captured there. Spent a few mid-Celtic Tiger years frequenting the glamourous up-market places. They were loud, gharish, cold. The staff were too cool and too busy to speak to you. They gave you whatever trendy hairdo they needed to practice, not what you asked for. Finally when I realised what a ridiculous amount of money I was spending, I visited my local hairdresser – not part of a chain, no fancy decor, no TV screens at each seat, no frappacinos. But the best hair cut and colour I've had along with being recognised when I phone, a little friendly chat when I feel like it, or being left alone with a cup of tea when I don't. I hope they'll stick around for my “cut and colour” for years to come.

  4. Well girls I am amazed. I really didnt think that this post would attract any comments and now I feel that I have unwittingly started a hairdresser victim support group.

    We are all clearly feeling very vulnerable in the hairdressers and are very sensitive to decor, staff and attitude towards us! This is a good thing.

    Niamh and ninimpg- think we more or less feel same way. We have all found somewhere comfortable where we can more or less relax and think silly thoughts and look at magazines that we might be embarrassed to be seen buying.

    But Susannah – first of all you I am sure have all our sympathies. your comment reads a bit like my childhood experience of dentists. But maybe you could take heart that when you do find somewhere local where you feel comfortable and as Ninimpg says you are recognised on the phone… well then a trip can be a nice treat.

    And as someone who just cannot manage my own hair I love the bounce effect of a proper blow dry.

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