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Under the Manbun by Shant

It had been a slow afternoon and I was just sitting in my barber chair hoping that I would get a few more customers before the day ended.

As I was reading, I heard the door to the shop open. Finally, a customer! I put down my paper and was really surprised to see a very handsome looking young guy with beautiful dark chestnut color hair pulled back into a manbun.

I really didn’t think that he had come in for a haircut. It took a long time for a guy to grow his hair long enough that he was able to tie it all back like that. I couldn’t remember the last time I had a guy come in with hair that long and want to get it cut.

"How you doing?" I said. "Are you here for a haircut?"

"Yeah, I’m hoping that you can help me with this mess I have here." I didn’t understand what he meant by that because he had really beautiful hair. I couldn’t wait to see him untie his manbun and see how long it was.

"I’ve walked past your shop several times and I really like the sharp looking haircut that you have," he said. "That made me think that you might be the perfect person to fix my hair problem for me."

"I’ll be glad to cut your hair for you. You look like you have an immense amount of hair there. Have a seat and let’s take a look at it."

The guy sat down in the chair and I caped him up. This was going to be one of the most enjoyable haircuts that I had done in quite awhile. I was anxious to hear how he wanted it cut.

The guy untied his manbun and his hair fell several inches down below his shoulders. It was then that I understood what he had met about his hair being a mess. Sometime back, he had decided to dye his hair blond.

He apparently got over it pretty fast, because it had now grown out long enough that he could brush it all back into a manbun and only his natural hair color was visible. The blond hair was totally tucked inside the manbun.

"My name is Gary, by the way," he said. "I don’t know why I was ever so stupid to think that I wanted to have blond hair. I thought that it wouldn’t be all that big a deal if I didn’t like it. Boy, was I ever wrong!"

"I know that most guys probably would have just grown their hair out a little and then just buzzed it all off and got rid of the blond. I just loved my hair way too much to do that, but I’ve put up with it for as long as I can, and it’s time to get it cut."

"I see what you mean," I said, as I brushed his hair all down around his shoulders. His hair had such great body and texture and it was really thick. I then took a comb and parted his hair perfectly down the middle.

His hair was so beautiful that he must have really hated the way it had looked for such a long time. I’d say his natural color hair was probably about eight inches long. The blond hair was practically the same length. He really had a lot of hair.

"I want to get rid of all the blond hair that I have. I really hate it. I’d like to keep my hair as long as possible, but I’m sick of this manbun, and I figure my hair is now long enough to cut the blond off, and still have a decent amount of hair left to get a good looking haircut. I can’t wait to see this blond crap all gone," he said.

"Would it be too much of a pain, if I asked you to go ahead and first cut off the blond hair, and then I can see how much hair I have left? Then we can decide what kind of haircut will look good on me?" he asked.

"I think that’s a good idea," I said. "Once I cut off all the long blond hair, it will be interesting to see how much body your hair has after being tied back for so long. I think it will definitely give you a better idea of how you want to get it cut."

I said this to him, wanting him to get more and more relaxed about the haircut that was facing him, but all the while, I was thinking to myself that this was going to be a really fantastic time for me. There’s nothing more most barbers like than getting to cut a guy with thick, long hair down short.

"You really have great hair. How about if I take a picture of you with your hair all brushed out like it is now so that we can have a great before and after shot? We can then start by taking off most of the blond hair and go from there."

"Let’s do it!" Gary said. "I’m so glad that I finally got up the nerve to come in and do this. I walked by a lot of barber shops trying to see what the barbers looked like and what kind of haircuts they were giving."

"No one caught my eye until I saw you working one day. In addition to having such a great looking haircut, you seemed like you really enjoyed what you were doing. I hung out a couple of times and saw guys leave your shop with really great looking haircuts."

I combed his hair one final time, making certain that it was all hanging perfectly straight. If his hair had been all one color, it would have looked unbelievable. He was going to look so much better, once the blond hair was gone. I was really psyched to do this! I took my camera and shot several pictures of him from all different angles.

I took my scissors and started on the left side of his head and just started cutting off where the blond hair started all the way around the sides and back. It was really something seeing all the blond hair coming off.

Eight inch locks were falling all onto his shoulders and then onto the floor. When I had finished doing that, there was still a little blond hair remaining here and there, but I knew it would come off when I gave him an actual haircut.

I looked at the clock and realized it was almost time for the day to end. I couldn’t believe how fast the remainder of the afternoon had gone by, but that was because I was having such an incredible time.

"It’s just about closing time," I said. "How about if I close a little early and then we can take all the time we need to end up with you having a great new looking hairstyle?" I turned over the closed sign and pulled down the blinds.

A barber knows when a guy is really into his hair, and it was obvious that Gary loved his thick hair, especially after having all the blond taken off.

You could already see by the look on his face how much happier he was with the blond hair being gone. I couldn’t wait to really start cutting his hair into a distinct style, as opposed to just hanging long like it now did.

As I continued brushing his hair all back, I asked him if he had any particular looking haircut he wanted to try? "Are you planning on growing it long enough again so that you can tie it back like the manbun you had when you walked in?" I asked.

"No way," Gary said. "I’ve lived out that fantasy and I don’t think that I will ever want my hair to get that long again. It’s just too much of a hassle to deal with and it’s boring always looking the same."

"After this mess, I think I’d like to try cutting my hair a lot of different ways and see how it looks. I want to enjoy my hair more than I already do, especially having hated it for so long. I know it’s vain to say, but I really love my hair. I bet being a barber, you understand."

"I’m already blown away by how different I look just seeing all that blond hair gone. Do you have any suggestions about how you think I should have you cut my hair?"

"How would you like to take a look through a couple of my hair styling books that I have and maybe you’ll find a haircut that you think you would like to try? That would give us something to start with," I said.

Gary took his time and looked through both books and he then showed me the haircut that he liked best. "Do you think you could cut my hair to look like this?" he asked. "The guy looks well groomed and yet it also shows off the tremendous hair that he has."

"I think this cut would look fantastic on you. You basically have just about the same type hair as the guy does in the picture. Your hair really is awesome looking. It has such great body and texture and it has a great shine to it. It looks so healthy. I bet you have learned your lesson and won’t be trying any other hair colors soon," I laughed.

"How about if I wet your hair and then I brush it all back the way that guy does? That way we can really see what we would need to do to get your hair to look like that."

"You’re in charge. Do what you think is best. I’m really stoked to see this finally happening!" he said.

After I finished brushing his hair all back, you could see that what he already had was basically a much longer version of the guy’s hair in the picture.

I brushed his forelock straight up and did the same with the remaining hair on the top. "You have such tremendous hair that I’m in total agreement with you, and think that you should especially keep the top long to really show it off. I think your hair will end up looking even better than the guy in the picture," I said.

"Let’s take some of the bulk off the top first. Without so much weight on top, when you brush your hair back, it will stand up even taller than it does now, and it will look even fuller."

"This guy in the picture has a slight taper around the ears and neck with the remaining hair on the sides all brushed back, and blended in with the top. I think that your hair being shorter on the sides and then having it stand so high on top will really look striking."

"I think you’re really going to be surprised after I finish cutting your hair and you see how great it is going to look."

"I have all the time in the world, and I want to give you the best haircut you have ever had. I hope you’ll end up deciding to have me be your barber all the time," I said.

"You just sit back and enjoy this. You have no idea how seldom I get to cut a guy that has really awesome hair like yours. This is going to be such a fantastic time for me, and I think for you, as well. After putting up with that blond mess for so long, you are going to be thrilled by how sensational you look."

I sprayed his hair so that it was slightly wet all over and then took a comb and brushed it all up and back like I had suggested. It was truly beautiful. Being wet made his hair shine even more. It was so amazingly thick, one of the thickest I had ever seen.

He still would be getting a lot more hair cut off, but I was confident it was going to look fantastic. After I had finished combing his hair all up and back, I took my hands and placed them on each side of his head and drew all his hair back.

"This can give you a fairly good idea of how your haircut will look," I said. "We’ll start by working on the sides first, brushing them all back and then taking them down. I want it to be long enough so that it is not touching your ears, and as it meets in the back, we’ll have it slightly tapered, so that it doesn’t look like a huge mop in the back. Then we’ll move on to the top."

"I am so ready for this," Gary said. "Go for it!"

I used only my scissors cutting the sides and the back of his hair in order to look like the guy did in the picture. I hoped that maybe one day I would get to use my clippers on him and take a lot more of his lovely hair off.

He was easily losing at least three to four inches from the sides and back. It was awesome watching it come off in such huge amounts.

The next part of the haircut, I was going to enjoy the most. I was so excited about cutting down the top. It was just way too long and it would be hard to keep it looking neat if left the way it was. I also didn’t want him to have to use all kinds of products to keep his hair in place. I definitely did not want him to look like a greaser.

I combed up his forelock and cut off about three inches of his beautiful, thick hair. I was having the time of my life and Gary seemed to be really enjoying himself, too.

When I finished the haircut, I combed his hair repeatedly under the pretense of wanting it to look exactly like the guy did in the picture. The real reason however, was that I just didn’t want to stop playing with his hair.

I thought his hair looked exactly like the guy did in the picture. I hoped Gary was happy with it. "So, what do you think?" I said. "That’s quite a change for you, but I think it shows off your hair really well. I think you look fantastic."

"I think it looks really good, but, I tell you what," Gary said. "I would gladly pay you double if you would like to cut my hair down some more. I think I’d like it even shorter."

"I think you’re right. I think my hair would look better a little shorter, maybe taper up the sides and back some more, and take another inch or so off the top? Do you think it would look better, or do you think I should just leave it the way it is now?"

"Being perfectly honest with you, I think your hair would look even better if I were to cut it the way you just suggested. With a first time customer, I never want to come across as being too aggressive, or seem like I’m trying to get the guy to cut his hair shorter than he wants."

"If a customer asks me for my honest opinion, I will answer him truthfully. I became a barber because I really enjoy getting to sculpt an awesome mane into a totally different style."

"It was great when you said you wanted your hair cut shorter, because I totally agree with you that it will look even better than it now does."

"The guy’s hair in the picture looks absolutely perfect, but it looks like he has to spend forever on his hair in order to get it to look like that. Of course, this is a model’s photo, so I’m sure they did spend forever on his hair."

"I wonder if his hair stays in place when he’s not sitting still? It would seem almost impossible to keep your hair looking like that all throughout the day without having to be combing it all the time. I bet having all that hair could be a pain, always having to be dealing with it."

"I want you to have a haircut that will really show off how great your hair looks, but also one that you don’t have to spend forever working on each morning."

"Personally, I don’t think a guy’s hair looks as good if it looks like he spends a great deal of time on it. If it’s just too polished, it doesn’t look natural, and the guy comes across as appearing really vain about his hair."

"It must have been painful going through that blond hair phase. Your hair looks so healthy, thick, and shiny, and with the slight wave it has, you can comb it so many different ways. I know exactly how I would like to cut it for you."

"Keeping your hair similar to the style of the guy in the picture, but having it looking more natural, is how I think you should let me cut it. I think we should do what you just suggested and taper up the back and around the ears a little more. I’d use a #4 guard to do that."

"The hair above that would be blended into the top. I think taking another inch or so off the top would also be a good idea. Being so thick, your hair will stand up even more than it does now, even though it will be shorter."

"I’d then just want to wet it down a little and blowdry it all up and back. When it’s almost totally dry, I would stop drying it. After finishing brushing it back, I’d just run my hands through it several times and let the waves you have just fall naturally into place."

"That is what I’d call an edgy looking pompadour. With the sides contrasting more with the top, the difference in length will make your hair look even fuller and show off even more how thick it really is."

"I definitely think that you should have the top all brushed back and show off the heighth it has. This will also be a really easy hairstyle to deal with everyday and will look like you hardly spent any time on it."

"How does that sound to you?" I asked. "I want you to be totally satisfied with this haircut. I know that it is going to look extremely sharp. The other great thing about it is that you can also style it a lot of different ways."

"Don’t worry about the extra time this is taking. I’m loving every minute of it, and it’s a real rush seeing how great it is beginning to look, especially considering how it looked when you came in. This haircut is on the house."

"You have made this such a great experience, and all the while I was thinking I was going to be dreading every minute of it," Gary said. "I really think that you have done a fantastic job. I don’t think that my hair has ever looked this good!"

"You have nothing to worry about. You are definitely going to be the only guy from now on that ever cuts my hair. I already know that I can totally trust you, and I’m already looking forward to seeing some of the great looking haircuts I know you will come up with."

"Knowing that you love cutting a great head of hair so much, and that you know how much I love my hair, makes this all the more enjoyable. I’m not nervous at all about whatever you do. Go ahead and cut my hair like you just described. I can’t wait to see it!"

I couldn’t wait to see it either. Cutting off all the blond hair was a rush. Then cutting his hair into the style he now had was an even bigger rush. Getting to cut it one final time into a more trendy, sharp looking haircut, the way I wanted to cut it, was going to be the biggest rush of all. I couldn’t wait to see the finished haircut and take another picture for our before and after shots.

I turned to my work table and picked up my clippers. No more just using scissors on his hair. I put the #4 guard on them like I had mentioned and positioned myself by his left sideburn. "I don’t want you to worry at all. Your haircut is going to turn out unbelievable. Are you ready? When was the last time you had clippers used on your hair?"

"Oh, gosh, it’s probably been more than three years," Gary said. "I used to be so afraid when the barber turned them on and approached me, fearing that I was going to end up looking like I had been skinned. I’m not worried about that at all. It’s actually got me pretty excited and I can’t wait to watch you cut it."

I placed the clippers at the base of his sideburn and ran them up to about two fingers above the top of his ear. Mounds of hair was coming off and falling into his lap. I could see that Gary was really charged up watching it happen.

Once I had finished using the clippers all the way around his head, I wet his hair again, brushed it all back and picked up my scissors. I combed his beautiful hair straight up and chopped off about one and a half more inches.

It had been a long time since I had a guy sitting in my chair and seeing so much wonderful hair coming off. I was stoked beyond words!

After I cut off the hair that I wanted on top, I then took my scissors and blended the top into the tapered sides. It really made his hair look awesome. It made his hair look even thicker than before the haircut.

These were the days that a barber dreamed about getting to have. They don’t come along all that often, especially a guy with such long hair getting such a sharp new haircut.

Gary was going to look really striking and I was really excited that I was going to be getting such a great new customer. Just like Gary, I was already thinking about what kind of haircut I was going to give him the next time I got him in my chair.

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