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A Flattop? (My True Story) by InnocentKink
I first became aware of my need to have ultrashort hair in my senior year of high school. At the time, I had grown my hair for most of high school, and it was nearly down to my waist. I grew it because I didn’t know what I wanted to do with it. The long length became part of my identity.
This changed when Frank, my computer repair teacher, came into class one fall day with a fairly short flattop haircut. It was mesmerizing as the bristles on top stood at perfect attention. The back and sides were equally intriguing as they showed much of his bare head. The combination was absolutely beautiful, and like nothing I had seen before. It was so cool, unique, and inspiring, that I knew I had to get one.
Throughout the year, Frank had received multiple flattop haircuts. Each time, the overall preciseness and shortness piqued my interest a little more. He mentioned that his son got him into flattops, and he prefers it over all other haircuts, even if it makes for a cold head in the winter. He was a bona fide flattop aficionado, he even talked about how in the summertime, when school was out, he would get it tightened every couple of weeks.
I began Googling flattop haircuts, because I had never noticed them the way I was now. Discovering sites with pictures of more flattopped men that looked equally cool, and reading experiences of others that loved the barbershop experience, and the experience of getting and having a flattop made me increasingly eager. I just had to have one.
One spring day, I walked into class, and Frank was sporting a newly tightened up flattop. The bare scalp of the back and sides of his head were on full display, and the top was short, stiff, symmetrical, and of course, flat. I don’t know what came over me, but I told him I liked his haircut as I walked into class! He then proceeded to thank me, and tell me that I have a good face shape for a flattop. I asked him where he gets it cut, and he looked surprised, and flattered, and told me. The Eagle’s Nest Barbershop. He then told me that all the barbers there do good flattops.
After weeks of ruminating and debating whether I could go through with it, one day after school I decided I was going to walk into the Eagle’s Nest and ask for a flattop. I had printed out a picture of a man with a boxy flattop; I had seen so many pictures of skin-tight flattops that this one looked conservative for my first one.
I pulled into the parking lot and walked through the front door. The sight and smell of the shop hit me hard. The smells of talcum powder and bay rum are very strong and deeply satisfying. The shop has several old leather barber chairs, with seating for customers waiting directly across. There was also taxidermy and football memorabilia on the walls.
The few barbers that were working all had customers in their chairs, and I was the only one waiting. After less than a minute, too short of a wait, a barber came out of the back and said that if I was ready, he could take me. He was a middle aged man with a full gray beard and a full head of gray hair, jeans, and a black smock.
I sat in his chair and he turned the chair to face the mirror behind his station. He put his hand on my shoulder and asked what we were going to do that day. I nervously removed the photo of the boxy flattop from my wallet to show him, and told him that I wanted a flattop.
He smiled and loudly said "A flattop?", which got the attention of the other barbers and customers in the shop. He then asked me if I had had a flattop before, which I had not. He also asked me if I’ve had a clipper cut before. I had shorter hair probably five years prior when spiky hair was in style.
He then told me that the haircut in the picture I provided is much shorter than I realized. He then told me that if I wanted, he would put my hair back in a ponytail, braid it, rubber band it, and cut off the ponytail, which would remove the bulk of my hair, then we would discuss styling. He also recommended that I donate the ponytail to Locks of Love since it was a couple of feet long.
My hair was quickly banded and braided. The other barbers asked me about why I grew my hair, and if growing, then cutting it all off, was on purpose. While growing my hair for years was not intentional, cutting it off was. After years of not knowing what style I wanted, the vision had become clear; I was to have a flattop.
Once my barber had the bulk of my hair ready to be cut, he asked me if I was sure, told me that it doesn’t go back on once it’s cut, and that if I chose to grow it again, it would take years. I told him that I was sure.
My barber got out his shears and after several large "snip" sounds, my long hair was removed and I could feel the load taken off my head. The barber held it in his hand, up to the mirror, and the other barbers looked at it in awe. "Here ya go", he said, and handed it to me. "Phase one is completed."
I sat in shock holding my ponytail in my lap, and looking at myself in the mirror. What hair I had left was roughly shoulder length, and looked very different than I expected. I didn’t recognize myself in the mirror. The hair on the top of my head was tightly trained to part in the center as the weight of the length had pulled it down. Holding years of growth in my hands, which was removed in less than a minute, brought me to the reality of the transformation that getting a flattop would entail for me.
The other barbers applauded me and congratulated me on growing a great donation, and emphasized that my years of growth will make someone very happy. My barber showed them the photo that I had brought in, and they were again impressed that I had wanted to get something so different. They commented that I had some serious guts.
My barber then asked me if that was enough for today, or if I wanted my hair trimmed or styled up. I said that I still wanted to try a flattop, but maybe something longer than what I started with. I suggested an inch or so on top, and shorter on the back and sides. He smiled and told me that an inch on top is shorter than I realize, and said he would leave me with more than that, and give it a somewhat flat shape, since he could tell I was shocked by how much hair I had already lost.
I told him that sounded good, and he said he would hold on to my ponytail. I handed it to him and he put it on the sink. He then removed my glasses and remarked he would hold onto those as well. I was so nervous I had forgotten that I couldn’t get a haircut with my glasses on, especially one that’s cropped close around the ears. He then put a neck strip around my neck and threw a maroon cape over me and fastened it tightly. He then turned the chair to face a mirror that was further away. I could barely see myself without my glasses. I was now being prepped to receive a proper barber haircut.
He started by using shears to trim off the bulk of my hair. It seemed to take forever, with a never ending parade of "snip" sounds. As fast as my ponytail went, this process was agonizingly slow as my barber kept finding more hair that he could grasp in one hand, while cutting it with the other.
Next, I hear an electric hum kick into life. It’s clippers, which are then plowed into the back and sides of my scalp. The sound of the blades mowing through my hair, along with the vibration going directly to my skull was all encompassing. He had told me that even an inch would be longer than I expected, but the intensity of the clippers led me to wonder if I was going to leave looking like Frank, with my scalp fully exposed.
My barber then has a spray bottle, which he used to get my hair damp. It felt cool and different. I was feeling air in my scalp for the first time in a very long time. He also massaged a handful of goop, I remembered to be gel from my spiky hair days, vigorously throughout my hair. The next step involved a blowdryer and a brush. He then used his fingers to take a gooey substance out of a jar, and applied it to the front of my hair. He completed a few rounds of this so he can have greater control of the direction of my hair so he can sculpt it into a flattop. I wondered if it was butch wax or one of the flattop styling products I read about online. My shock of having my long hair has faded, and I’m getting quite comfortable with the barbershop experience, and am eager to finally have a flattop like I had mulled over for months.
Next, my barber used a flattop comb to guide the cutting of the top of my head. There were multiple rounds of the clippers going over the comb to make the flat shape. This was also done around the top of the back and sides to mold the boxy shape that I was going for. There was some additional product added to the top of my head as my barber seriously worked at getting my hair to defy gravity.
Finally, my barber handed my glasses back and held a hand mirror up to my face. As I view myself with a flattop haircut for the first time, I am once again shocked at my appearance. I certainly have a boxy and flattish shape; it is both longer than I expected, and shorter than I ever thought my hair would be. As my barber instructs me to check out the back, sides, and crown, I can barely comprehend that it’s me with this cut. He did keep it longer than I had asked, I had maybe an inch on the back and sides, and more on top, but it was also easily the shortest cut I’d ever had.
"I used a lot of Krew Komb on the front" my barber told me. "Your hair right now is trained pretty strongly to part in the middle, and stand down." He also recommended that I gel it up daily to retrain it to stand at attention. One of the other barbers told me I looked like Simon Cowell. Another barber said that I looked like a cop. As I inspected my new self, I could imagine myself ditching my glasses for aviator frames.
My barber then took my glasses and the mirror, and told me that he needed to put the finishing touches on it. I heard a machine running in the background, and in a short minute warm cream was being applied around my ears and along my neck line. He then used a bic razor to shave around my ears and make my neckline even. The hot lather was very soothing, and an excellent way to end the experience. He also used a paper towel to remove the excess lather, before applying aftershave. The aftershave stung slightly, but smelled like heaven. I can see why Frank does this all the time.
My barber then told me I’m all set, and removed and shook the extra hair off my cape. It then came time to pay, and enter the real world with my new flattop. He also made sure I had my ponytail in hand, and all the needed information to donate it. It was definitely an eventful afternoon, and a transformation that hadn’t yet registered. After paying, I shakely walk back to my car; the clippers are still reverberating in my head. When I sat down, I again didn’t recognize myself in the mirror.