For a person who’s anything but spontaneous, I am really impulsive.
One lazy Wednesday, my friends were booking a flight to Bangkok then off to Hua Hin, a beach paradise approximately 200 km south of Bangkok. We got lucky we made the cut for the promo rates which summed our fare less than THB 2,000 (around USD67) each via Nok Air. While they were planning our trip, I was admiring how gorgeous Miss Universe 2009 Stefania Hernandez’ hair was. It was the first time I saw a beauty queen with short hair. I mean, most of them have long and wavy coif but she had a sleek but equally stylish bob. So I sent an SMS to my friend and asked her when I should reimburse her for the tickets and then typed in I really want to cut my hair. She replied that we would go to the salon after work.
When we finally agreed with the time, I started fidgeting and the thought of cutting my long locks after two years scared the hell out of me. Hair grows, I (re)assured myself. Some people liked my hair for being naturally bouncy and wavy, but on my part, I got tired of it. On the other hand, I was afraid something will go wrong during the haircutting process and I might end up looking –uhm –worse.
My First Wash Hair
In 2008 when I had my internship here, I observed that the ladies have long, shiny, straight hair. I, for one, was always wondering how in the world they are able to maintain it because in my case, whenever I grow my hair long, I always come to that point where the whole maintenance gets to me and end up cutting it short. Turns out, some of them don’t wash their hair everyday; instead, twice or thrice a week, they get a little help from beauticians in the country –hence, Wash Hair *sic*. This is like the regular shampoo/blow-dry combo salons offer but the thing with the wash hair is the hairwashers thoroughly massage your head… translation: it kind of hurts. It’s supposed to be hard, Mina (my friend) chuckled, I actually like it that way. You can tell him not to though.
Right, I thought to myself. When could I have mentioned this to my hairwasher when he looked like he enjoyed scraping my scalp off. But despite all my shock and scalp-ache, while he was blowdrying my hair, it felt great. My hair feels lighter and clean and it smells fruity.
I wondered though, I was about to get my hair cut…why is this dude drying my hair? Aren’t they supposed to leave it that way and blowdry it after the haircut?
I heard of dry-cutting before, but I thought it was only offered in high-class salons in the metro. I first came across this concept when I was watching a lifestyle show in the Philippines where a famous hairstylist, Pin Antonio, did a little makeover on Jodi Sta Maria’s hair. But that was in the early 2000s and I never thought that technique is also practiced in Laos.
Apparently, dry-cutting is preferred by some because the hair is on its normal state, so texture and weight of the hair are already studied by the stylist. This also helps the clients to see the actual look and not be fooled by the blow-drying-to-perfection scheme at salons to make the hair look fab but the next morning, it has gone beserk. The stylist also can easily spot those annoying split-ends.
The hairstylist came in. He asked me if I got the picture of the style that I wanted. Earlier that day I was taking screen captures of Stefania Fernandez’ short hair; I saved all possible angles just to be sure the stylist gets the right picture. I showed him one and he was all, Okay. He started twisting my hair, placing pins on top my head, and then went snipping and snipping like he wasn’t cutting hair at all. It felt like he was cutting grass.
After 10 minutes, after some crazy twirls and flips –change has happened overnight.
So when you’re in Laos, and you see a salon even small ones in residences… Go for it. It will only cost you roughly two dollars but the light feeling after a stressful day at work or heavy sun exposure? Priceless.