Nervous about going to the hairdressers? Why you get anxious and what to do about it

hairdressers sign

Despite the fact that most of us get our haircut at least once every few months, when you stop to think about it, going to the hairdresser really is quite a strange thing to do. We pay quite a significant amount of money for someone, usually a stranger, to cut bits of our hair off while we sit there and look at ourselves in the mirror. It's very weird, and the fact that it's a real source of anxiety and nervousness for many people is not a surprise. So if the idea of going to the hairdresser makes you feel anxious, here are some alternative ideas you can try if your hair badly needs a cut:

Get a home haircut

As well all know, the pandemic changed things. Many people chose to grow their hair out during the lockdown period, but others insisted on having their hair cut even though they couldn't go to their usual barber shop or hairdresser. This led to an increase in people opting to hire a hairdresser to come to their home, which is becoming increasingly common and is a great way to reduce the anxiety of the situation.

Take a relaxant

The great thing about going to the hairdresser is that you don't actually have to do a huge amount once you're there, even though the hairdresser can often make you feel like you need to be in constant conversation. If you want to just sit there quietly while they cut your hair but you get nervous energy, then perhaps consider taking a relaxant. We're not talking pills either - try a natural relaxant like a herbal tea, or even a decaf tea. We're also big fans of CBD gummies, and mushroom complex supplements like Reishi are great for helping you relax too.

Even if the idea of taking a relaxant feels a bit too far for you, at the very least you should avoid stimulants before you head to the hairdresser. You don't need a Red Bull before getting a haircut!

Politely request how you want the appointment to go

There is absolutely nothing wrong with telling your hairdresser that you feel nervous about your appointment, and if the thought of having to make conversation makes you feel nervous then just tell them that you don't want to talk.

It might feel a little bit rude, but if you asked most hairdressers to politely cool it on the small talk, they'd probably actually really appreciate the break.

Do it yourself

This tip won't just help with your anxiety about visiting the hairdresser, it could also save you some serious money. Cutting your own hair is criminally underrated, probably because many people think it is much harder than it actually is - especially for guys with shorter hair. There are some excellent video tutorials that you can follow on YouTube, such as this one. It definitely isn't as scary as it sounds, and can actually be really fun. If you're really hesitant, get a friend or family member to help you with the back of your head. And hey, if it gets messed up, that's what hats are for.

Go prepared

One aspect of a visit to the hairdresser which can be a real source of anxiety for many is not really knowing how to ask for what you want. This can often be made worse if you're surrounded by other customers who really seem to know what they want, and even seem to know how to speak the special hairdresser language ("a 4 on the top and 2 on the sides, please"). A good thing to do is to actually bring a photo of the hairstyle you want - this might seem a little odd, but trust us when we say that hairdressers wish you did this more often. It'll make their lives so much easier and it'll make the whole situation much less stressful for you.

afro haircut
Just like that, please

Go with it and let the hairdresser lead the conversation

This one is definitely easier said than done, but sometimes the best thing to do when you visit the hairdresser is just to go with whatever happens, and let the hairdresser lead the conversation. They might have trained as a hairdresser but most of them are also experts at holding a conversation, and they've definitely met hundreds of people who are more awkward than you. Don't overthink the conversation and try to enjoy it as best you can!

Hopefully the above has proven that you don't need to stress too much about visiting the hairdresser and that even if you do feel really anxious about going, there are lots of things you can do to either reduce the anxiety of the situation or to avoid the situation as a whole. Let us know what you think of our tips in the comments!

Finn is the editor of You Well and has been writing about travel, health, and more for over 10 years.

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