Over the last year I have had paid for a haircut only twice. I have went from a shaved head and nothing more than 5 o’clock shadow to a side swept undercut style haircut and a full beard. For the longest time I was doing my own haircuts because it was that easy. My wonderful wife has since taught herself to make me look rugged and handsome, at least I hope that’s the look. That’s why today it was a big surprise when I opened the wallet and spent $50 on a haircut. But is an expensive haircut worth it?
Personally I love the barbershop experience. A fresh cut, nice shave, and a little man pampering that most guys are not accustomed to, myself included. Remember I literally used to cut my own hair.
I remember the days of my old roommate cutting my hair for $8 in our Miami dorm style apartment turned into a New York barbershop.
It’s a funny world we live in where hair cuts can cost hundreds of dollars and also advertised for $5 in my old local Chicago neighborhood. Now in some cases this is certainly a “you get what you pay for” situation.
I can attest to a $5 going very well as I was a frequent visitor to my local barbershop on my way home from the train. They were great and even though with tip I paid $8 it was well worth it. I can also attribute to the $5 haircut not going to plan as I once was missing part of my eyebrow during my one time visit a new local barber.
When the conversation during the haircut transitions into the question “Did you just cut my eyebrow?”. You should know everything is not going to end very well.
In 2018, I decided that I was going to make a change in my fitness and health. I wanted a way to really notice the change besides losing weight and getting fit was going to be growing a beard. Not only did my overall fitness level change pretty drastically but so did my hairstyle and beard.
It also turned my beautiful wife into my new hair stylist and barber. She watched a few YouTube videos and received a couple reminders from me to not worry about messing up my hair and I was paying exactly $0 for a haircut.
The only cost was replacing the 10+ year old Wahl hair trimmer because of a missing clip and a clippers that had seen better days. She has done a great job and continues to cut my hair throughout all of 2019 with the exception of my new $50 haircut.
Before my wife and I left for our vacation and remote work travel to Italy I knew I needed a haircut. The sides were getting a little long. My hair was turning from a side sweep into the need for a man bun. Not a good look.
As work, appointments, and getting ready overtook our lives missing my haircut appointment happened. Part of me thought I could just wait out the haircut Another part of me almost took the clippers with me. The last part of me thought why not just get a haircut in Italy. It will be fun.
While in Florence, I made a couple of attempts to go to a local barber that has the cool hipster vibe that I envisioned getting my hair cut in. No dice. I had actually thought getting my haircut in Milan was the better choice. I figured there would be a better chance of English being spoken since it’s a larger city.
I set out on a Tuesday afternoon to head to Barberino’s, A Classic Italian Barber. I decided to walk from our apartment, reserved with Booking.com which as an aside is proving to be a much better option for our travels than Airbnb.
As I walked through the high fashion business settings of Milan I came across the barbershop. After a few words in Italian and my professed need of English they let me know the next appointment was 2 hours away.
Since Barberino’s offers other locations they let me know a 20 minute walk would solve all of my problems for my need of an appointment right away.
My new destination took me through the Duomo plaza, possibly the most fascinating architecture I have ever seen. Also a quick stop in the only Starbucks in Italy or should I say Starbucks Reserve again brought a level of fascination that is rare.
As I arrived in a small Italian barbershop setting down a street curled in between some of the major Milan city streets I met my Italian barber Encione.
We worked through the hairstyle and guidelines in a short order. I didn’t need to worry much about the language barrier as I told him to “Make me look good” in Italian. All language problems solved.
Truth be told there was some language barrier as my Italian is very minimal. However as I have learned over time acting out your words is the key to success in any language.
A haircut is one thing. A meticulous haircut, clipper style fade, and a perfect look is another. After a short period of time I felt like I received all of that in my haircut.
This is where most of my haircuts usually end. Since growing out my beard I actually have had a total of one beard trim. Additionally I had one haircut with a beard trim in the past 2 years of my beard’s existence. On a separate note I need to name my beard. Currently accepting applications.
Then it happened. My eyes were closed as the barber placed some sort of wonderful smelling wrap on the bridge of my nose. Next beard oil was rubbed on my face almost in a massaging motion.
Moments later I received a hot towel on my face. Having a hot towel over your face is almost a moment of euphoria. If this is what a $50 haircut and beard shave involves I am ready.
After a lather with shaving cream and a straight edge razor everything was close to complete. Since I only wanted a beard trim, the barber took a small clippers for a clean looking trim. After a little aftershave the beard trim was finished.
My haircut was finished after getting my hair styled for a new look. The hairstyle was natural. In fact, I think this was the first time ever that a blow dryer has touched my beautiful locks and it just might happen again.
Getting a $50 haircut amounted to a special occasion or sorts. This often happens with items that you do not have part of your normal routine.
For example go out for dinner three times a week and it’s just another meal. Instead a special monthly date night going out for a meal and it’s what you have been waiting for all month. The difference is immense.
I enjoyed the Italian barber experience. The precision cut, hot towel, straight edge razor, and moments of man pampering. I mean I used the word euphoria probably for the first time in my life while writing. My experience must have exceeded expectations.
For many individuals the $50 haircut was as common as taking the car down the street to work. My experience was an unknown. You see how I described it as an experience rather than a normal event.
I have received free haircuts, $5 cut your eye brow haircuts, and a $50 classic Italian barbershop haircut. My answer to the question is an expensive haircut worth it is a yes. I don’t think I will have my haircut and beard shave become part of my every month expense. But to include it as a special expense every couple of months just might be the new Even Steven Money look.
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