Thursday, July 22, 2010

Home Haircuttery, with Uncertain Results

Hank, Before Haircut

Obviously Hank has needed a haircut for some time. I know this not only because I can see him with my own eyes, but because virtually everyone we come into contact with offers this opinion. "That boy needs a haircut!" Yes, I expect this from grandparents, but the UPS guy? Really dude, just take your brown shorts and your advice and get back in the truck.

Hank is shaggy, I know. He has also been resisting the idea of a haircut for a long time. When I bring it up, he says, "But I like it this way!" So I let it go. He has beautiful blond hair and I like it that way too. I did trim his bangs a couple of times.

Finally, yesterday, I decided he needed shearing. I thought it would be less hassle if I cut his hair, rather than coaxing him into the barber's. I have never cut his hair before. But I am cocky and figured I could do it. Also I am cheap.

First I took another "before" pic of Shaggy. He's shaggy but happy.

I knew that I could do a pretty tidy job with the electric clippers, as I've done Matt's hair that way. But I also knew that if I cut Hank's hair too short on top, we'd have weeks and months of rooster tail, because that's what his hair does if it's not long enough on top. So I decided to try to give him a scissor haircut.

Mistake. I really don't know what I'm doing with scissors. And yes, I know there are, no doubt, countless Youtube videos that would teach me how to cut hair, but who has time for that? Did I mention I'm cocky?

Here's a "during" picture.

During Haircut

If he looks unhappy, it's because he was. He was nice and patient though, in his beach towel with chip clip, sitting on the stepladder. In fact, he kept saying, "Aren't I being so nice and patient?" Heartbreaking.

So, scissors in hand, I got the front done okay and then headed around past his ear. Then I really started to screw things up. He just has a lot of hair. And it seems there really is some kind of trick to it. Okay, I repent! It got to the point where I would pick up a random piece of hair and clip at it in desperation. Not good.

I decided to turn to the clippers. I put the number 8 guard on and did the back and sides, attempting to fade them into the the longer hair on top. I was going for one of those longer-on-top with short sides little boy cuts. Reader, I don't know if what I achieved is an acceptable haircut or not. I want you to tell me if he needs a twelve-dollar fix at the barber. Everyone at my house kept saying, "Well, it's not really terrible."

"After" pics.

After Haircut

I Messed Up One Side

You can see in this second photo that I couldn't get that right side right. Actually the pic makes it look worse than it looks in life, but it got to the point where I was worried I'd make it worse by "fixing" it. Here's the back.

Back of Haircut

Fortunately, he doesn't give a rip how it looks now that he's not having to be nice and patient anymore. And I can't tell if it really looks okay, or if I just think he is so cute it's blinding me to a fugly haircut. Maybe it's good enough for summer? You guys need to talk to me and tell me what you think.

Both kids are on their way to Chattanooga right now to spend a few days with Matt's amazing mother Betty. It's only until Monday, but I'm worried that I'll miss them too much. Laura has been out of school for two months now, and I have absolutely loved having more time with both of them. They are nonstop hilarious and (mostly) charming little souls.

Maybe Betty will take one look at this haircut and march him straight to the salon. If so, she has my blessing.


Ash said...

Oh my. Sweet patient boy. His adorableness is quite blinding.

I'm guessing your mother in law may not find it in her heart to hurt your well-intentioned efforts by taking him to the barber.

I'm going to risk being banned from your site forever by saying - you might want to call and actually ask her to do it :-)

Becky said...

Ha! You are right, Ash, I probably need to ask her! Betty, are you reading this?

I am tempted to say, when he gets home I'll try to fix it a little more, but this could end in total disaster.

Ash said...

I know what of I speak - I too tried this route with my Oldest (with all three cowlicks on his crown. I know.) - only to have to do the barber walk of shame.

At least if Betty does it, she can just throw you under the bus.

You could always take him out back, strip him down, strap on the #2 gaurd and do a little shearing - I'm totally betting Hank can pull of a high and tight.

(thanks for not being mad :-)

Michele R said...

Straight boys’ hair is hard to do and less forgiving when it comes to anything but the clipper cut. I liked the before picture—has he asked for a skateboard yet?? My middle son has the same issue in not being able to have a short, clipped cut because of the serious rooster at the crown, so long and shaggy works best. Accept now that there will always be a hair issue with his hair. I think you did pretty good—you avoided a bowl cut--all it needs is some blending in on his right side, and a little on the backside. Another visit at this time means it’ll end up pretty short. If that will make him sad…maybe good idea to have grandma take him while in Chatt. (good cop/bad cop). It will be lather, rinse, repeat on hair discussions over next 10 years.

Meghan said...

I think the haircut looks cute...I was prepared for worse. Also, working with the scissors and blending and stuff just takes practice. I somehow became reasonably good at cutting hair just by practicing and kids are perfect because they really don't care.

Also, not related to this post, but made me laugh and think of one from a few months back (re: snuck vs. sneaked)

Hootie said...

Talk to Brenda. She's a masterful home-haircutterist. The best haircuts I've ever gotten have been by her hands (with scissors.)

David said...

i don't think there's a problem with the after pics. He just looks like a boy with super-straight hair who just got it cut. Michelle R's totally right about that; i speak from experience.

the before pics weren't bad either, though. it wasn't so long that it was emo, so he was all good.

are you serious about the UPS guy?... you might have a new label: "if you don't have anything nice to say..." or something like that. seems like unsolicited and otherwise inappropriate opinions from relative strangers pop up in a number of your posts.

Becky said...

I know, D! I think the unsolicited (but not always inappropriate) comments from strangers are a southern thing. I usually don't mind but when I was pregnant it drove me crazy--"Oh my god, are you having twins?" etc.

Meghan, that youtube clip is hilarious. I like that Jennifer Garner.

Jenni said...

Look, he is absolutely adorable no matter what. That face could save any do.

That said (and you know I love you), take him in.

The Stiletto Mom said...

Goodness. Well, it does grow out as I learned from my own hair cutting experiment on Gracie. The good thing is, he's so cute there's no choice but to focus on his sweet face and not that little thing-a-ma-giggy going on on the right side. :)

My Kids' Mom said...

Lurker here... I almost bought a pair of clippers just moments ago as the Target deal of the day. I was part way through checkout! I think I have a steady hand and that I could do it, but my kids have straight thick hair too and... well, maybe not. I'll tell them to thank you.

Keely said...

I am in the same situation as you with Xander - but his hair is curly. It also grows like weeds, and he is not NEARLY as patient as Hank, so I just take him to the hairdresser every time the daycare lady starts threatening him with barrettes.

He IS blindingly cute, but...take him in, lol. For you, more than him.

Amy said...

Hank, Hank--what a little man he's becoming! That picture of him when the haircut is in process is priceless! That expression on his face! What a sweetie.

Look, what's done is done. No sense in crying over spilled hair. ;) Actually, I was also prepared for worse. It looks decent. However, I think you should leave this in the capable hands of Betty. I bet she can get 'er done this week.

The Messy Mom said...

I have totally lucked out with my son and so far I've haven't had to shave it due to a home haircut mistake. Pictures are tricky, because you won't usually see him in a frozen position so a little unevenness won't be as obvious in real life, so you are right that it probably does not look that bad in real life. I am not saying it looks bad, I am just repeating what you stated about the photo.
Hope you don't miss your kids too much, Z was at his grandma's for a week and I cried and cried.

Megan said...

I'm with the Ask Betty crew on this. Maybe she can do it "in secret" so you can convince yourself that his fine 'do was your doing... it just needed time to settle for a few days.

For my son, whose hair is identical in color, straightness and cowlick placement as Hank, I've had to admit my limitations and give portions of my income to Snippets on a regular basis.

Maggie said...

I especially love that he tells you that he is nice and patient. He is such a doll. Gary and I really enjoyed seeing him(and the rest of you guys) in June. What a lovely family!!!!!

Becky said...

Ha! Betty just emailed me and said:

"After seeing that face in midcut, there is no way I would even mention 'haircut' to him."

I guess that makes her the good cop? And I'll have to get it fixed when he comes back. The verdict seems to be leaning heavily in favor of "Take him to the barber," which I think is right. In my experience with my own hair, a bad haircut might look sort of okay at first, but after a couple of weeks it looks terrible.

Sjn said...

I am a do-it-yourself kinda gal for sure. I'd rather try to do the work myself than have strangers in my house. But... there are some things you just have to let others do. Overall it's a fine haircut, it just needs a blending in between the layers.
Grandma Betty to the rescue!
(Hey, at times I'm tempted to take Baby C's mohawk and give him a buzz. ;-)

A Lawyer Mom's Musings said...

Umm, it's not that bad. Really it's not.

But . . . next time? Let the barber have a gander.

I think Hank has the exact type of hair Mr. M does, and Mr. M's barber told me, in no uncertain terms, to NEVER EVER let anyone use clippers on him. He had a long explanation I didn't completely understand, but after our clippers catastrophe a year or so ago, I think he's right.

And tell Mr. Brown to mind his own beeswax!

Marie said...

You couldn't make that precious boy look bad if you tried! That said...I totally identify with Betty. I'd play the Grandma card. We just want a fun time with our grands and it would have to be something really big for us to do something to make them unhappy.You will have those privileges one day!

Elle said...

It's not that bad, honestly. But it's going to grow out higgedly-piggledy, you're right. Trained haircutters can be fast if you need them to be.

I hope you let the child eat 2 popsicles & the whole jar of jam when you were finally done.

beth said...

you have a future here- don't let it slip away. You did not make the novice mistake of the 'straight across bang' or the 'way too short bang' and you didn't even give him a 'go to hell strip by his ear'!
I say by the time he's 7 and it matters a little (to him) you will be a pro. Think of all the money you'll have can put it in your Target fund :)
It looks tastic.
Your next step? yes. youtube. blending. get that cutie home and work your blending magic. You can do this.

Michele said...

That was a right of passage for you and Hank. The first mom cut always looks like that. Actually, it looks a ton better than I did on my first boy cut. Think, bowl cut.

Anonymous said...

He has almost identical hair to my youngest and I - and here I should mention I have never, ever, had my own hair cut by a professional - have found myself in similar circumstances. I had to start taking him to the barber after my French friend took one horrified look at him and said sadly, 'Zis 'as to stop now.'

Hey, you got the fringe [bangs, I mean] straight - I've done unintentional art school asymmetry before!

Lena said...

In a word, yes. Take him to the salon. And this comes from a pretty easygoing mom too. One who's usually reminded to cut her daughter's nails only when the poor thing draws blood trying to hug someone.

Veronica said...

I think it's fine for a little boy in the summertime, but I think I've already been outvoted. :)

Crystal said...

I cut my hubby's hair all of the time now, but before I did I went with him to the barber (ahem, the $60 barber) and watched his every move. Point-cutting is key to blending. Then I bought a nice pair of scissors at Ulta and went rreeaalllllly slow the first time (and like you I'm not the slow patient type). I've cut it like 7 times now and I can do it in 30 mins flat. Here's my first attempt:

Don't give up, you can do it ;)!
~Crystal (Amy's friend)