My roommate and I wanted to get a new European chic haircut, like Kate Moss or Amy Winehouse.
We heard about this "Salon Chocolat," where they give free hot chocolate, free chocolate samples and have such a French sounding name.
We were all for it. The night before we picked out styles from a British hair magazine called "YourHair." Clever, I know. I gravitated toward Heidi Klum's sleek, shoulder-length haircut. It was no Amy Winehouse, but it would do.
We show up to the salon, which is in back of a chocolate display. My hairdressor's name was Brent. He lives in France, commutes to Canterbury twice a week, and spends the rest of the week teaching the latest styles from Paris to hairdressors in Belgium. Legit, right?
I told him about the Klum look, and he talked me out of it. "You've got such great curly hair!"he said. Tell me about it. He convinced me of a look that's popular in Paris right now. The hair is cut to be angled behind the head, with a little fringe in the front draped back. Sick. But if it's all the rage in Paris and he teaches in Belgium...what the heck, I thought, I'll go for it. When in Rome...
He let his "assistant" wash my hair, which turned into a creepy thumb massage, and "assistant" blow dried my hair. My hair came out straight. I was praying that now Brent would work my hair like putty into something Parisian-fantastic.
Putty he used, all right. Brent applied gobs of wax and hair spray for my "wavy-fringe-Paris look." I peered in the mirror. I looked like a wet dog that had just ran through a tornado of dirty wax. Not joking. I sat in my chair fuming.
"Isn't my hair supposed to be curly?" I asked.
"Yeah, it is. That's funny. Hm..." he said.
Apparently "assistant" used the bean-chocolate-whatever-conditioner, which is wrong. It makes dry hair very straight and flat. Smart. And "assistant" didn't curl my hair but blow-dried it straight.
"Well, come back in a few weeks and I'll blow dry your hair for free so you'll get your money's worth," he said.
My money's worth? What? Isn't that what I'm here for today? I asked if he could start over, which he did. I came out looking much the same, just with curly, individually sticky hairs. It was sick. I think if I fell over my hair would stick to the floor. And then they could use it to wax a speedboat. I sat in my chair on fire with anger. "Yeah, it's really great, nice how cuurly it is now," I kept saying.
My new "haircut"
From the back
Are these people delusional or just know they screwed up and are trying to sell it to you? I don't get it. I paid 40 frickin' pounds for my natural hair to be sprayed with a gallon of hairspray.
I think he felt bad for me, because he gave me a box of chocolates, which I gave up for Lent.
I ran outside and chomped them down like T-Rex, enraged. I then went into every single store on my way to the bus stop, looking to buy something, anything, to make me feel better.
I kept saying to myself, people in Somalia are starving and you're ready to cry about your hair? But our hair is so personal. It says something about us. If you have a bob, you're not afraid to be different. If you have a mushroom cut, well, God help you. But whatever the style, it's a part of you. I did not want to cry to the world that I wanted to be Ryan Seacrest with moussed extensions. Shoot me. I'm still a little bitter.
I ended up buying nothing and then dunking my head in the shower to wash all the goo out. It actually wasn't a horrible cut, just bad styling. Last time I trust the French with style.