I need to get a haircut so I do the only sensible thing and post onto the Lonely Planet thorntree forum:
I am living in Buenos Aires and will be staying for several weeks/months. I just wondered if anyone has any recommendations of good hairdressers in the city? If they speak some english even better as my Spanish is very basic.
The responses are a little unexpected:
The locals have probably been asking the same question for years. Have you ever seen the typical porteño haircut? Argentina is the land that hairdressing forgot.
"typical porteño haircut"
I was not aware that there is a typical porteño haircut and then you can definetely not mix up porteños with the rest of Argentina. I am curious. Why do you think that Argentina is a land that forgot hairdressing? What would be a typical brasilian or chilean haircut for example? Also, there are plenty of hairdresser all over Argentina and a lot in Buenos Aires. People, especially the ladies spend a huge amount of money and a considerable time in these places. Must be pretty stupid all these people to waste their time and money, according to your observations! Bear in mind that all these people have access to internet and TV and see haircuts and the latest devolpments of fashion from all over the world, including haircuts, all the time
I am curious. Why do you think that Argentina is a land that forgot hairdressing?
I made a mental note of the various types of haircut I saw in BsAs. Prevalent were the following.
1) 'I just got out of bed', with or without the cut on the bias. Common and quite ghastly.
2) The mullet, the femullet, the German heavy metal fan mullet. Popular.
3) The 'I think I would look like Gael Garcia Bernal' if I was only twenty years younger' look, a sort of subset of (1). Scary.
4) The bad 1970s TV detective show cut, with or without drifts of dandruff and usually with sideburns. Nostalgia for the era of the junta maybe? Or maybe Carlos Menem should be regarded as a more influential figure than is popularly recognised. Sad.
Now these observations were made about three years ago so who knows, maybe all that TV and internet viewing has changed things. Judging by what I saw you could have been forgiven for believing that a substantial part of that TV diet consisted of re-runs of the Rockford Files.
What would be a typical brasilian or chilean haircut for example?
I can't say that the coiffures sported by Chilenos stuck in my mind. Unremarkable, most likely quite conservative on the whole, like the wearers tend to be.
The general tendency in Brazil, at least for men is short and neat. I can get a decent haircut for as little as R$8,00 without fear of ridicule. My wife spends maybe four to five times that amount and as a whole Brazilian women tend to be rather particular about their appearance. SP seems to be a magnet for bad hairdos, the exception that proves the rule.
Must be pretty stupid all these people to waste their time and money, according to your observations!
I couldn't agree more.
All very amusing but not very helpful for my enquiry. Anyway, luckily the story has a happy ending and I find someone on an expats forum who cuts peoples’ hair in her apartment. She also has her own horror stories about hairdressers in BA and recalls one incident which ended with her in tears. Looks like I had a lucky escape...