Friday, October 10, 2008

Haircut in China

It has been a long time coming, but I finally decided to get a haircut. This is something I had somewhat been dreading since the final results of the haircut could prove to be disastrous.  Some of the hairstyles that are done for some Chinese guys are not conducive for a white guy with a receding hairline.  Case in point:
In order to prepare for the haircut, I had my Chinese tutor give me a short lesson on what I needed to say to get my haircut the way I want it, and also to prepare for the way haircuts work in China.  It seems that getting a haircut in China is a lot more of a production than going to a simple barber in the US. One of the interesting things about living in another country and not fully speaking the local language is that even a mundane task like getting a haircut can be a lot of work and somewhat of an adventure.  
After memorizing the lines I needed to say, I went to a hair salon.  I told them I wanted a haircut, then they led me to a chair, after which a girl wearing a surgical mask came over. The first thing that happens is that they shampoo your hair, which in and of itself isn't different from what I'm used to. However, the shampooing is a hybrid shampooing and scalp massage, which lasts around 15-30 minutes or so. 
After they washed out all the shampoo from my hair, I thought it was time for the haircut. Once again, I was wrong. After the shampooing, they basically do an upper body massage.  They massage your scalp, face, shoulders, arms, hands, upper back, etc. At one point, they even cleaned my ears using a Q-tip, although I wasn't that comfortable with how far they were putting it in my ear.  I wish I could have enjoyed the massage more, but I had the burning fear in my stomach of the upcoming haircut. I'm not sure why I was so nervous, but that detracted from the overall experience for sure.
After around an hour from when I first went into the salon, they finally got around to cutting my hair. I said my lines without any problem and the haircut turned out to be ok.  It's not exactly like a haircut I might get back home, but it got the job done.  It was also pretty cheap, all things considered.  It was around $6 for the haircut and all the extra stuff.
Witness the Haircut
Maybe a little too short around the ears?
So, the haircut ended up not being too bad and everything worked out ok. I was hoping this post would be funnier than it turned out, because in real life it was pretty funny to me.  Somethings are just hard to describe I suppose, but you all still read the article anyway.  And once you've read something, you can't unread it.


Edward said...

Lookin' fresh, Wesley!

David Wei said...

they do the head massage bit in chinese hair salon in the states too. not the q-tip thing though. tunneling for ear wax is just weird.