Clippers save money

October 19, 2008

If you are a bloke with thinning hair, you can:

  • plaster it down into a combover (undignified);
  • take some dubious pharmaceuticals (expensive and uncertain);
  • get implants (ditto, also they look obvious);
  • cut it short and learn to love your scalp.

I have chosen the last option. I still have most of my hair, but the widow’s peak is evaporating and it’s clear that the “M” is going to be a “U” soon.

So anyway, I got clippers from the Warehouse for $12 a couple of years ago, and so I get a regular number 2 at home for free. You can’t get a number 2 from a barber for $12, so I’m well ahead. Some mugs may be spending hundreds on haircuts per year, but not me, mate.

(Life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, right?)

Apropos the number 2: when I was a teenager, and contemplating getting around punk/skinhead style, my mother disparaged such cuts as making one look “like a fur-bearing doorknob”. I grew a mullet instead, which I felt displayed my chestnut curls to advantage.

Apropos the combover: I was once privileged to be walking along Broadway in Newmarket behind a man whose scalp only grew hair in a small patch at the back. By means of some sort of super fixative and great deal of dedication, he had managed to tease those few strands into a kind of bouffant helmet which looked most convincing at a reasonable distance. Alas, it did not stand up to a strong head wind—or rather, in a manner of speaking, it did.

Apropos the hair implants: I once worked with someone who’d had them, but they didn’t take. So he had a neat pattern of dark scarred dots on his shiny forehead, which reminded me of the keys on a concertina.

Bonus baldness facts! It isn’t true that you get it from your mother’s side. At least, it’s more complicated than that. I love the breathless tone of the article: 1 in 3 men over 45 is at risk!

There’s a lot of money in dealing with baldness:

About a third of all men are affected by male pattern baldness by age 45. The condition’s social and economic impact is considerable: expenditures for hair transplantation in the United States alone exceeded $115 million (U.S.) in 2007, while global revenues for medical therapy for male-pattern baldness recently surpassed $405 million.

Don’t let anyone tell you men aren’t vain.



  1. I have been cutting my hair with clippers since I was 20. I’ve been through 2 sets of clippers and even though I went for a $90 pair last time, I’ve certainly saved a number of times their value over the years.

  2. Hairdresser boyfriend goes this route even though a. he is displaying no signs of baldness and b. could get free haircuts from his colleagues at will. It just looks good. And negates the need for hair product.

    I used to do it myself (well number 4) before getting bored with the short. Will probably go back to it when I get bored with the long.

  3. The clippers thing doesn’t necessarily work for women. I did cut my hair short and go to a barber when I was at Uni though. Now I have long hair and only get it cut once a year which costs about $45. Another solution is to be-friend a hairdresser and swap hair cuts for child care or something. I do this for my kids haircuts.

  4. Heh. When I was just out of university and still had the beautiful chestnut curls, I was friends with a guy who was a hairdresser retraining as a lawyer. He gave me cheap (and good!) cuts at home. I used to joke with him that given the confessional/advisory role that hairdressers play for their clients, he ought to open a dual purpose law practice/salon once he graduated. As far as I know he didn’t though.

  5. My standard answer when somebody teases me for my premature lack of hair is “yes, but think of the savings.”

    (My father’s was “I haven’t lost it, I keep it in a special drawer”)

  6. strangely, when i was young and didn’t have to worry, i shaved my head.

    now i just flaunt it. heh.

    although when studenting i used my own clippers to save money. these days they’re a handy beard trimmer.

  7. It’s clippers in our house – $25 from The Warehouse a couple of years ago. So cutting his hair is very cheap.

    Mine is not. That’s because I have finally given up on being boldly grey, and opted for the bottle instead.

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