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The $220 Haircut

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Yeah, you read that right. $220. And no, this isn’t a ‘the haircut was $20 but I ran over a nail and had to pay $200 to replace the tire on my way to the salon’ story. The haircut was $220.

*Sigh* But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me start from the beginning.

I love my hair. It’s halfway down my back. Shiny. Red. Wavy. I get lots of compliments and I don’t have to try that hard to keep it looking good. Hubby still colors my greys and Great Clips still does my trims. All is right with the world.

Well. All WAS right with the world.

Then I got sick. I’m working through fighting the health battle and my hair is paying the price. It started falling out a little at first then recently, falling out by the handful. I tried Halo type hair extensions to cover the loss and it worked. No one could tell. But it itched, gave me headaches, and I couldn’t go for a walk at lunch since the Halo doesn’t like sweat…or wind…or joy in life.

I gave up and decided to cut my hair off. Long hair is forgiving, short hair is not. Since I was struggling with losing my hair, I really wanted to feel good about the cut. I researched online and found a highly rated stylist. The rate listed online? $120. Yes, roughly 10x more than my usual but since this was such an emotional step, I wanted a ‘good’ cut and color.

She did a single color and a fast cut. The bill? $220. I stared at her, open mouthed. ‘Isn’t it $120?’ I asked. ‘The COLOR is $120. The cut is $100’ she replied.

OMG friends. Seriously, the most mediocre cut and color that wasn’t applied as good as my amateur hairstylist husband was $220. I paid and she asked when I would like to schedule my next cut. ‘Thank you for your services but the price is out of my range and I won’t be returning. It’s not your fault, I should have read your pricing more carefully.’ She looked shocked. Uh, do normal folks have that kind of budget for a haircut?!?! Holy Moly!

Great Clips, I’ll see ya in a few weeks. I’m so sorry for ‘cheating’ on you.

How much do you pay for a cut and color? I’m super curious as to what’s ‘normal’. My Great Clips is around $12 but with tip, I pay $20. My hair color is Madison Reed on subscription and it’s $23. My hybrid DIY routine is $43 every 8-10 weeks.

Also, as much as it didn’t work for me, I DO recommend a ‘Halo’ type hair solution. You can get a great one from Amazon for $35 and they are real hair. They are great for bringing back confidence after hair loss. I just couldn’t do it for 9 hours a day 7 days a week. But for occasional use, they are super fun.


15 Comments

  • Reply Alice |

    Oh wow. That’s like salt in a wound. What an awful experience for you.

    I have grays and refuse to try to cover them. My hair grows so quickly, I’d have to touch up every three weeks and I’m just not going to do that. I’ve been letting my hair grow out over the last couple of years. I had a super short cut for a long time. When I do get a trim, I go to the same lady who has been cutting my hair for 30 years. Yes, I have to drive 35 miles. But it’s $12 plus a tip.

  • Reply Anon Reader |

    She was probably just surprised you didn’t do the polite thing of just saying you’d call later to schedule and never doing it. I don’t get my hair professionally colored for that reason – it’s very expensive – but it’s not surprising to me that that’s what it costs at a fancy salon. And I would never assume color was included in the cost of a cut – they’re totally different services.

    Moreover, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to charge that either. How long were you there for? An hour and a half? Between the time spent, the materials used, and rent for the space, it adds up. If you’re happy with Great Clips, do that, but you weren’t charged an unreasonable price for a service.

    • Reply Beks |

      I considered it but I didn’t want her to think I was upset with the cut or color. It was just a mistake on my part and she wasn’t at fault.

    • Reply Beks |

      I was there for an hour, about the same amount of time I used to spend at my stylist in CA. I know booth rent is expensive but I can guarantee it’s more expensive in CA and my cut was cheaper.

  • Reply Katie |

    Whn I lived in the DC area, close to $300 for cut and color, with tip. Now I live in a much more rural area and it’s about $140 for a cut and color, including tip. I could go someplace cheaper, but I have really thin and fine hair and it is worth it to me to pay more to someone who knows what they are doing.

    • Reply Beks |

      I’m with you, I’m definitely willing to pay more for a good cut! Just not $220. I think I can find a better deal.

  • Reply Sarah |

    I live in the bay area where everything is super expensive. But, I pay $125 for a haircut/color/highlights which is super cheap. I keep telling her to raise my prices but she won’t…I’ve been going to her for over ten years (one of her first clients).

    I tip her $35 to help make up for the cheap haircut/color/highlights. With no haircut/highlights and just color, I pay $60 and I tip $20.

    I have friends who pay multiple hundreds of dollars. I could never do that and don’t need to as I Iove my gal.

    • Reply Beks |

      That’s pricing I’m used to! I’ll find someone more in that range but I’ll remember to call to confirm first!

  • Reply jj |

    That is a LOT in USD – I have done a cut and colour with a stylist before and maybe it is that much in Canadian. I hope your hair loss stops/slows down.

  • Reply Anonymous |

    I’m sorry you’re experiencing hair loss. I cant imagine what that must feel like – so much is tied to our hair emotionally as women.
    I’m confused by your post though. Did you expect the cut and color to be covered together? That price doesn’t seem unreasonable, especially in a higher end salon. Sometimes salons will charge more too to “cover up” an at-home color job. Not a big deal, just don’t return. But I’m with Alice – skip the coloring (no matter how low the cost) and embrace what you have naturally.

  • Reply Daybyday |

    I live in a hCOL area and cut and color can run over $300. I wear my hair every day. I don’t “embrace gray” as I don’t want to appear old both for my career or myself. There are impacts for women (whether people want to think so or not). Sadly I can’t color at home as the kits don’t work well for blonde. Occasionally I do try the hair school and that’s only $40….but you take a bit of a risk and it takes 3x as long…..You get want to check that out, or Mad Reed has started to open color only salons.

  • Reply Kathy |

    I think the price was ridiculous, especially since Texas’ cost of living is supposed to be lower than California? I would have been shocked at that charge!!

    I live in central CA, and my stylist just recently went up to $95 for a cut & root touch-up (the cut is included in the color price). Granted, she is one of the cheapest in town (but very good). The others around here average around $120 for cut & color. Personally, getting my roots professionally done is worth it to my overall confidence.

    • Reply Beks |

      Right?! I feel crazy!
      But yeah, it’s super important to get a good cut for confidence!

So, what do you think ?