Post haircut cleaning?
April 7, 2010 8:54 AM   Subscribe

What's the easiest and fastest way of getting hair fragments out of my hair after a haircut?

I'm a guy with very low-maintenance hair. No products, no styling, it's just sort of... there. I used to get it cut shorter, but my wife likes it longer so whenever I get a haircut (which I usually put off for too long), I have them leave about 2 inches on top and use a 6 on the sides. Then when I get home, I take a shower to wash out all the fragments. And it takes forever. I'm slightly OCD so I prefer to get it to the point where I crazily run my hands through my hair and no fragments stick to them. I use a shampoo/conditioner but I don't know if that makes a difference.

It seems to take me half an hour these days to wash out all the fragments, and that seems excessive. How do other people deal with this?
posted by kmz to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (20 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: vacuum your hair before the shower...
posted by at 9:00 AM on April 7, 2010

I'm a girl with short hair, and every time I get it cut little bits fall down into my shirt and itch like crazy, so I'm interested to see what other people post. If my hair is dry, sometimes it helps a little (maybe only psychologically?) to headbang like I'm in a heavy metal band. It shakes out some of the hair fragments - they float down slowly in a little cloud - so I usually do it outside. Maybe blowdrying would have a similar effect without making you look like a crazy person? But the only real solution I've found is a shower. Maybe other people have better ideas.
posted by sigmagalator at 9:05 AM on April 7, 2010

(as a bonus, you can make some awesome (temporary) hairstyles using the vacuum cleaner just watch out for your ears: eardrums + vacuum pressure = ouch
posted by at 9:05 AM on April 7, 2010

I use a plastic "scalp scrubber" in combination with very foamy shampoo. The device looks strange, but feels fantastic.
posted by cranberrymonger at 9:08 AM on April 7, 2010

So you're asking for pre-shower tips? Or even with a shower you have difficulty getting the hair out? It seems odd that it would take 30 minutes to wash them out! Maybe take a bath first, so your hair is soaking freely in the water, agitate all the hairs out with your hands, then shower to rinse?
posted by peep at 9:10 AM on April 7, 2010

If it takes you 30 minutes to get all your cut hair off your head you need a shower with stronger water pressure.
posted by dfriedman at 9:14 AM on April 7, 2010 [5 favorites]

My husband has never seemed to have a problem with this (and neither have I, though I haven't had a short style in forever). The stylist generally takes the blow dryer to his hair when she's done and sort of roughs up his hair while she's "drying." Then she styles it and all is well.
posted by cooker girl at 9:16 AM on April 7, 2010

Thirty minutes to wash all the "hair bits" out in the shower seems really excessive. Like, excessive by a factor of 60 or so. Do you have some sort of low-flow or mist shower? I just can't imagine why it would take that long.

Anyway, I'd try bathing, or rinsing your head in a deep sink or even a bucket of water, while scrubbing your scalp and hair, first. That ought to do the trick.

You also might want to ask the barber / hairstylist to work a little harder to get the hair pieces out while you're still in their chair; some people tend to do a really cursory job and I find the little bits incredibly itchy and annoying. I've purposely gone to barbers because I've known they have those low-powered vacuums designed specifically to remove hair pieces, and then I've asked them to be extra-thorough with it. At other places, I've just asked them to spend some extra time with the blowdryer trying to blow the bits out.

If you go to one of the places where it's SOP to have your hair shampooed before the cut (e.g. Hair Cuttery and many other chains), you might instead shower and shampoo your hair at home, and then ask the stylist to shampoo afterwards. I do this whenever I go to one of those places, and they generally do a pretty good job getting the hair out.
posted by Kadin2048 at 9:25 AM on April 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

My barber actually uses a vacuum on his customers before they leave the shop!
posted by tumble at 9:25 AM on April 7, 2010

I usually just run a comb through my (dry) hair and change my shirt. Seems to work fine enough to get me until the next morning's shower.
posted by backseatpilot at 9:54 AM on April 7, 2010

Sometimes, I get my barber to wash my hair after the cut, instead of or in addition to the pre-cut wash.

I also agree with other posters. If it takes you 30 minutes to get loose hair off of your head, how in the world do you ever get shampoo out of your hair? Do you massage your scalp with your fingertips while washing it? that should get loose all of the hair, which will rinse out with the shampoo.
posted by AtomicBee at 9:55 AM on April 7, 2010

Best answer: I know your plight exactly. I have two suggestions.

1) if you just get a haircut, then want to go straight home for a shower do this:
Try to keep your hair as dry as possible after the cut (no product, etc). BEFORE you take a shower, stand in the DRY tub with DRY hands and lean over and rub your fingers back and forth through your hair for like 2 minutes. You can also do the same thing with a DRY brush or a DRY towel, your preference... or maybe combine all 3.

Because the hand/brush/towel and the hair is DRY it will fall easily from your scalp to a pile on the floor where the shower water will wash it away. Also, while your hand/brush/towel is dry you can usually shake off the dry hair.

This (depending on how greasy your hair is) will get most of the hair fragments pre-shower. The shower then becomes mostly a relaxing "get rid of itchy feeling" experience, rather than work. If you try to do the same procedure while wet you encounter a number of problems:

a) the water works like glue, making all the hair fragments stick to stuff (your scalp, your face, your back).
b) the soap gets covered in hair which you have to wash off
c) you often need the towel for the final clean, but this wastes a towel (who wants to wash up later using a hairy towel?)
d) Also, the towel becomes a medium of hair exchange between the scalp and the towel, so your never sure during the drying procedure if you have gotten all the hair from your head or not.

2) A psychological approach. This does not really work with number 1 above except indirectly*. But basically:

Go to a barber that offers a shampoo RIGHT after. Often this eliminates the chance of much of the hair getting on your cloths (the real itchy problem) and makes your head feel "clean" and "hair fragment free" for the rest of the day. Problem solved!

*It's not %100 hair fragment free, but it's close and it feels like it, so you can go do the rest of the day. If your hair dries out then the frangments will fall off naturally as part of your daily activity. You still probably want to take a shower that night, but, again, you don't have to worry about most of the fragments because they are mostly gone.

As you can tell this is a personal plight, I hope these thoughts help you my friend. Good Luck!
posted by DetonatedManiac at 9:58 AM on April 7, 2010 [3 favorites]

I'm a short-haired gal and I usually cut my hair myself at home. I use a sticky lint roller to get the little bits of hair off of my skin; this should also work pretty well on your head, though you may need to use two or three sheets. Lint roller + quick shower = all of those little itchy bits of hair are gone.
posted by kitty teeth at 9:59 AM on April 7, 2010

Are you sure you're not freaking yourself out by pulling out hair that's just part of the normal shedding process and interpreting that as leftover hair from the cut? Unless you have the world's saddest water pressure (and it would be sad all the time, not just post-haircut) I think you're possibly in a stray-hair freak out feedback loop.

Failing that, maybe try a bath or find a place to swim instead? Maybe in the free floating water of the pool some more little hairs will get free.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 10:11 AM on April 7, 2010

Vacuum or compressed air.

Ask the barber to vacuum your head, or hit it with a blow dryer on high while you hang your head upside down and run your hands through it vigorously. Usually, for me, just hanging my head upside down and going at my hair with my hands for a few seconds after stepping out of the chair does the trick.

If you've got a compressor in the garage, put an airgun tip on it and blow through your hair a bit before you go in the house to shower. That'll get rid of any loose hairs for sure.

Maybe use a can of dust-off the same way, but it won't be as effective as a compressor.
posted by chazlarson at 10:28 AM on April 7, 2010

nthing the vaccuum and compressor tips. Plus, they feel nice on the scalp.
posted by werkzeuger at 10:53 AM on April 7, 2010

My my new haircutter washes my hair both before & after the cut. He costs more than either of my two previous places, but is more convenient.
posted by MesoFilter at 11:05 AM on April 7, 2010

Vacuum. I trim my hair to a quarter of an inch all the way around. It's usually a full half inch by the time I get around to cutting it (every 10 days or so), so there's a ton of tiny hair pieces floating around my head. I vacuum my head for about a minute, then shower with the water pressure all the way up there and spend about half a minute running my hands through my hair. When I'm done and towel dry my hair, I get confirmation that all bits of hair have been removed because I see none in my (white) towel.
posted by Brian Puccio at 12:00 PM on April 7, 2010

Response by poster: Are you sure you're not freaking yourself out by pulling out hair that's just part of the normal shedding process and interpreting that as leftover hair from the cut?

Ah, you know, that's probably at least part of the problem. The water pressure's not the greatest, but it's not bad. And I'm probably somewhat exaggerating on the half hour thing. I haven't actually timed it, it just feels like forever. :-)

I guess I should try a new barber or at least more services at my usual place. <ashamedly>Great Clips.</ashamedly> I know I've seen stuff like a post-haircut shampoo on the menu, but I've never tried it.

But thanks most of all to DetonatedManiac. Great detailed answer!
posted by kmz at 12:03 PM on April 7, 2010

Girl with short hair here. Can your barber blow dry your hair before you leave? This takes most of the stray bits out of my hair. Also, if I can't get home to shower, baby powder on the back of my neck eliminates most of the itchies; sometimes stylists even powder my neck for me.
posted by sarajane at 12:30 PM on April 7, 2010

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