No hairdressers. Not that big of a deal, right? You only get your hair cut once every few months anyway (you can’t afford to get it cut every 6 weeks, no matter what the ‘experts’ say). Unfortunately, the last time you got your hair cut was when you went home for Christmas and your mum paid for it, so it’s around now that you’re due for a trim.
For the first few weeks, you’ve held out. You’re scarred by that time your mum tried to ‘touch it up a bit’ and you ended up with a pixie cut. Or when you got drunk at a sleepover, after skimming the tops off all of your friends’ parents’ bottles of alcohol, and woke up with a triangle cut out of your hair.
But now it’s been a few weeks. And it looks like it’ll be a few more. And you saw a simple tutorial on TikTok. And the boys have paved the way by shaving off all their hair and looking ridiculous, so no one will even notice your little trim. Your sister says she’ll cut your hair if you cut hers, so as long as you go first you know she won’t fuck you over. She can’t risk the revenge.
And if you learn how to cut hair now, who knows? A side hustle when you return to uni? An Instagram full of funky haircuts and grateful friends? A fast track into a career as an influencer, money, power, glory? Next thing you know, for clickbait you’re trimming one of the Kardashians wigs. Dreams? Come true.
The idea has taken hold. You’ve watched a couple of YouTube tutorials, and have obsessively snip snipped with the scissors to ‘get the feel of it’. You’ve waited until hair wash day (once a week – you’re using this time to ‘train’ your hair for less washes). Obviously, you don’t tell your mum what you’re doing – she got angry enough last week when you dyed your hair pink. Just sneak upstairs and get ready to blow her away with your fresh Barnett.
Sitting on the edge of the bath, you have reached a slight hiccup. While you had done your homework, sifting through LA vloggers tips on hairdressing, your sister did not. Betrayal! But you’ve committed now – you’ve told some friends about this plan. Can’t back out. Set up the phone to create a time-lapse you’ll never watch, and get going.
The sound is the scariest part – the snipping, the gasps from your inexperienced hairdresser, the ‘oops’. OOPS. What do you mean oops? It takes forever, you keep moving your head, and are disconcerted by staring at your own face in the phone in front of you for 10 minutes. On the plus side, you have answered an age-old question – are you that ugly just in the hairdressers, or always? Turns out it’s just those mirrors. And the angle of the phone. And having wet hair sleeked down. Not you.
Finally – finished. Sprint to the mirror. Even out the front bits even though your sister never made it around there. Stare hard and find…you're just as ugly as when you started, and the haircut you thought would change your life has made no discernible difference to your face whatsoever. Exactly like going to the hairdresser for a trim then.
By Honor McGrigor