Haircut Experiences

I went to get my haircut today, which has been overdue for several weeks already. When my hair starts to cover my ears, it’s the indication that I need a haircut.

So let me tell you about my haircut experiences here in Seattle. I’ve gotten a total of 4 haircuts here. Twice at SuperCuts and twice at a place known as The Barber Shop.

First time, I didn’t know which places were decent, so I went to the closest SuperCuts and got my hair cut there. First of all, the wait time was ~2hrs, and they recommend that you just make an appointment next time, which I took note of. The next thing was the haircut they gave me was pretty awful. All the time, it felt like she (the barber) wanted to just finish up and move on to the next customer. I mean it was a haircut, but there were so many places that weren’t even, that I didn’t bother trying to get the her to fix it. It really felt like I getting a haircut from a barber training school. The haircut itself was $13.95 + tip (maybe + tax too, I don’t remember), but that was expected. There won’t be any Monterey Park $6 haircut prices up here in Seattle.

The next time, I’ve gotten several recommendations on the Microsoft newsgroups for new graduates. There were salons ranging from $15 to $40. The Barber Shop was close to where I live and it wasn’t that much more expensive: $19 for a haircut (so only $5 more). The service was great and he was quite attentive. He asked he how’d I like it done and I asked for his recommendation. He suggested me to try 5 and 3 and if I wanted it shorter, he can continue working on it. After he showed me what a 5 and 3 looked like, I wanted it a bit shorter because I tend to be too lazy to get haircuts and he said no problem and continue to cut my hair. I was really satisifed with this haircut. But that could also be due to external factors such as I actually had fun talking to this barber and it tickled when he cut my hair and it felt nice. Then of course, there’s the self-fulfilling prophecy where I had to pay more, so if I didn’t get a better haircut, I’d think myself as being stupid for paying more.

So in order to test that theory, plus the fact The Barber Shop wasn’t opened on Sunday, I gave SuperCuts another try. I made my appointment and went to Costco. Spent an hour or so there, and when I arrive at SuperCuts, it still wasn’t my turn. So I headed off next door to Starbucks and got myself a Mocha Frappuccino and waited for my turn. This time, completely new barber, so I thought hopefully my luck would change. It turned out to be a lot worse. So most barbers use these clips defined with numbers, which I can understand why and how that makes their life easier. I wasn’t too sure if The Barber Shop had used clips, but I was leaning toward now, because I don’t remember the clipper actually touching my scalp. But anyway, back to SuperCuts. I’m usually fine with clips, but this one did not have a FLAT surface. There was a bump in the middle of it and it kept scratching my head where ever she tried to cut my head. At first I tried to just endure the pain, but imagine taking a somewhat sharp plastic object and scraping your head back and forth. It got to the point I told her there was something wrong with the clip and it was scratching my head painfully. She took the clip, checked it, cleaned it, and tried again. It was better, but still scratched, but not as painfully anymore. I’m not even sure what the problem was. Was it because she was pressing too hard (I don’t think so). It really felt like there was an extra piece of plastic on the bottom of that clip. I didn’t bother telling her anymore since it doesn’t seem like it’ll get me anywhere, and I just wanted to get this over with. Once again, bad haircut. Choppy areas. The only thing accomplished was my hair was shorter and I can go around without another haircut for 2 months. I’m not sure if all SuperCuts are like this, but now I’m certain I won’t go to another SuperCuts for a VERY VERY long time.

Since The Barber Shop is closed on Sunday and closes at 2pm on Saturday, I had to get up early this morning to go get my haircut. The barber that cut my hair last time wasn’t there, but everyone here seemed cool. I think the barbers here use clips too, but they don’t press it against the scalp so it feels like it’s floating through your hair when they cut it. The barber would try to bring up topics I’m interested in, and make jokes which I actually smiled and chuckled at. I’m actually having fun getting my haircut. Once again, a very satisified haircut. I even asked him to trim my tail a bit, because it was getting a bit too long, so I think he took off an inch or two (or so he says). I even left him a big tip because I was so happy.

After just visiting SuperCuts website, it turns out you can get a $2 off coupon for your next visit. Just search for SuperCuts you want to go to with their Locator, and click “Sign up for haircut alert”. At $11.95, it’s not that bad anymore, but I probably won’t be going there for a really long time.

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