This is not my own story, I have found it for years in an old haircuttingstorieside. I hope I do not harm copyright. The authors name was redcrop.
I turned the mirror slightly and checked my reflection. I paused to tug a few tresses into place. I admired the colour – “rich titian”, a tribute to the colourists’ art. The cut, although short and wildly spiky, was still feminine and certainly fashionable. I checked my lips to see if I needed to reapply my lipstick but smiled to myself instead. This was it then… I stepped out of the car and paused to lock it. I smoothed the skirt of my dress down. It is one of my favourites: a mixed pattern of blues and greens in a cool linen/cotton mix from Monsoon. Three-quarter length, sleeveless and with a scoop back and relatively low front although not so low as to show any cleavage. It is a perfect summer dress and I always feel attractive in it in an understated sort of way. I was grateful for the qualities of my dress as the sun beat down mercilessly. Why is the summer in England so unpredictable? I usually get it wrong and have too many clothes when its hot and too few when it decides to rain. I began to walk down the street and around the corner. The side road the car was parked on was relatively quiet. The main road I joined was loud with traffic.
My pulse began to quicken as I approached the shop. Was I really going to go through with it? I reached the door. It was standing ajar. I could hear the hum of clippers from inside. My heart rate leapt even higher. I took a deep breath and stepped into the relative cool and darkness of Bladerunners. Bladerunners is more barbershop than salon but caters to both sexes. Two girls work there. One has medium length dark hair and she runs the barber chair. The other has shorter hair that changes colour fairly regularly – she runs the women’s chair. Only the barber was there as I knew it would be today. She looked up as I stepped in and smiled. The clippers still buzzing in her hand, her victim in the chair looking into the mirror as she was shearing him down to a number one by the look of it. I took the scene in in a glance, the caped customer, the barber with her buzzing clippers and a gratifying pile of hair around the chair – this was a girl who had no problem with cropping her victims…
“I’m on my own today if you wanted a cut…” she apologised.
I swallowed and heard myself say, “That’s OK, I wanted you to cut it anyway…”
I sat down on the waiting chairs as she returned to running the clippers over her customer’s appearing scalp. I watched the clippers move, the hair tumbling away… my mouth grew so dry my tongue felt it would stick to the roof. My heart was pounding and my palms sweating. I tried to force myself to relax as I realised the cut was coming to an end. The customer stood up to pay and was handed a tissue as he walked from the chair. She turned towards me and smiled. “If you want to take a seat…” On suddenly unsteady legs I walked over and plumped down into the warm barber chair, aware it was in the window of the shop and passers by, even car drivers could glance in and see me sitting there.
The customer dealt with, she returned to me and wasted no time in swishing a cape over me. She smiled into the mirror. “What’s it to be then?” She held my eye in the reflection – was that half smile just being welcoming or did she suspect?
I licked my lips then in a hoarse voice said, “All off please…”
She didn’t seem fazed at all but leant forward to pick up her clippers. “Do you mean all off or just a crewcut like the last guy?”
This was my chance to back out – to change my mind and yet not lose face but I had come here with a purpose. “All off!”
Click buzz, the clippers began to whine. She changed her grip on them so that the cable came out from between her thumb and forefinger. They hovered in front of my face. Hitherto I had always been fascinated by napes – I thought this was the ultimate. My last buzz cut had been of the nape and then up over the top…this was going to be different. Buzzz the clippers drew close to my forehead then buzzzzzaaaaaaa they whined back through my hair straight down the middle. I gasped involuntarily as the Wahl clippers chewed through my dyed tresses leaving a path of white scalp covered in dark bristles straight back to my crown. My eyes widened in wonder at the contrast between the spikes standing up from my scalp either side of this grey-white swathe. It was the most intense moment I had ever felt in my haircutting adventures (at least until this point). The barber smiled as the clippers returned to the front. I realised she had a purpose to this and she seemed to be enjoying herself. Cutting my hair thus I could watch the moment of no return. Also it was more final – a shorn nape can always be turned into some other sort of style from businessman to flat top even some women’s styles. In those two or three seconds however she had irreversibly committed me to having my entire head shorn and what a shearing it was.
Buzzzaaaa, buzzzaaaa, buzzzza, buzzzaaaaa. With just four rapid sweeps the top of my head was shaven back to bristles. Red tresses still hung around my ears and on my nape but a shaven woman was already staring back at me from the mirror. She worked incredibly quickly and hardly paused as she returned the clippers in her hand to the more usual grip. Her left hand clamped down on my crown. I gasped once more – her hand was cool on my now near-naked scalp. She pressed down perhaps a little harder than she needed to and I stared at the mound of hair collected in my lap. I pushed gently up into the cape with my hands, which were perspiring madly as they grasped my small bag tightly into my lap. As I moved the cape a clump of hair slid down towards my feet. I wasn’t wearing tights and soft tresses fell onto my right foot – I could feel the hair as a weight on my foot – the choice of strappy sandals to complete my feminine summer outfit had been perfect.
The clippers pressed in hard and unyielding into my nape. Buzzzaaa they swept up, up to the occipital then on and over the top. Buzzaa, buzzzaaaaa. Again and again the clippers moved up my nape. Another thick clump of liberated tresses slid down into my lap. My eyes watered – not tears exactly – perhaps pure emotion? Her left had pressed my head over to the right a little. Buzzzaaa. The clippers moved up behind my left ear. Buzzaaa, again then they turned and headed forwards above the ear. She allowed my head to rise a little then buzzaaa she sheared away the remaining tresses at the side. I was able to see from beneath my eyelids into the mirror. I had meant to watch the hair being shorn away from the side but instead my eyes locked onto the near naked scalp of the front of my head. She moved to the right and my head was pushed over in the opposite direction. Buzzaaa, buzzzaaa. Up behind the ear and above it a little. More hair fell. She paused and my head snapped upright. This time the clippers buzzed loudly right by my ear as they swept backwards from the sideburns to the back…several small sweeps removing the last of my dyed tresses.
She clicked off the clippers perhaps a little ostentatiously and set them on the counter. I stared in total shock and shivering with pleasure at my reflection in the mirror. Who was this shaven headed woman with large eyes? (Why do my eyes seem bigger? Even than when I have a really short fringe?) She made eye contact. “OK?” It was almost a grunted question and I managed a sharp nod in return. She picked up the soft neck brush and began to swish the shorn hair from my shoulders. Masses slid down the cape to the shop floor – then another gasp as she swished up and over my head, the soft bristles of the brush tickling across my hyper sensitive scalp. She stepped up close to the counter and I looked at her left hand that seemed almost to tremble slightly. Was she enjoying this too? She squeezed a blob of shaving gel onto the tips of her left fingers. She dolloped it onto my crown. I squealed. It was so cold. She grinned and began to massage the gel all over my scalp. She had not asked or confirmed I wanted a razor shave but was just going ahead with it. I felt myself shudder as the gel was worked over my head. I stared at my reflection, fighting the urge to giggle inanely at the ridiculous sight of the white creamy lather over my shorn head. She paused to wipe her hands then opened a drawer to remove a safety razor. The razor looked to be brand new. She removed the guard and held it up close to my head. I held my breath. The razor hovered above my forehead just as the clippers had done. I felt the blade hard and biting on my skin just below the hairline as her left hand again clamped onto my crown. Scriiiikkk. The razor drove back over my scalp mirroring the path of the clippers. In one smooth action she drew the blade back through the gel. Rosy pink scalp showed in its wake. This feeling was even more intense than the clippers and I all but groaned and closed my eyes…
Scriik, scriiik. This was no novice with the razor. No little scraping actions for this woman but long purposeful sweeps. I wondered how many heads she had shaven? How many women’s heads? Not many I’d bet but here she was shaving mine as if she did it every day. Perhaps she did. For much of the shaving I kept my eyes closed savouring the sensation of the naked blade on my skin. The feel is so different to the clippers and so addictively delicious. I realised that throughout the haircut I had not noticed if anyone had walked by the shop or even entered. I could have had an entire audience watching me but I was oblivious to everything except the sensations of the shearing. The shaving seemed to take much longer than the clippering but even so it was soon over – all too soon to my mind. She set down the razor and took up a towel, which she wiped over my (I shuddered as the delicious thought went through my mind) BALD head. She took a moment more to wipe the excess cream from behind my right ear then looked at me in the mirror.
She smiled. “There we go. £7 for a full headshave…” She reached for the small mirror and I felt like exploding. The checking, removing of the cape, paying and leaving all seemed to be something of a whirl. I remember thanking her and leaving a £3 tip. (Well, keep the change from £10). I stepped from the barbershop and the final assault on my senses as a waft of warm air licked around my ears and the full intensity of the sun beat onto my naked scalp. I walked along the road and back to my car. I waited until I was sitting in its safety before I touched my head. I found myself giggling inanely, my palm no longer sweaty felt cool on my hot scalp. What an experience.