Hope my hair, ICU bed head edition, Portland
November 6, 2014 9:02 PM   Subscribe

My long hair is a casualty of a recent ICU stint. I am ok with going short and starting over. But... There are complications. 1, I am still in hosp, and when I leave will be in a skilled nursing facility. 2, I moved here two days before ending up in hosp and have no friend base. 3, I have $40. I am hoping to find someone who would be willing to work in those confines to cut and style my hair, who does have experience. The nurses have no suggestions. I don't even know where to start, and am over whether by enough life changes in the past three months to last a lifetime. I need this to be as simple as possible. Please forgive not doing all the requisite searches, limited by tablet and energy. Thanks for suggestions on who might be able to help.
posted by batikrose to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (14 answers total)
In the short term, plaits! I stuck to really cute pigtail plaits and french braids or simple low plaits. There are many adorable plait tutorials on pinterest and the nice thing about a low plait is that you can sleep in it and leave it for a couple of days when you're too tired to do hair stuff and brush out your hair easily, and it still looks nice.
posted by viggorlijah at 9:12 PM on November 6, 2014

Response by poster: Let me clarify the damage is done, my hair is felted into a big knot on top and sides by people who meant well...
posted by batikrose at 9:13 PM on November 6, 2014

What city are you in? If we know where you are then locals can offer more specific suggestions.
posted by Jacqueline at 9:15 PM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

She says Portland in the title (and when it's unqualified, I tend to assume Oregon).

If it were me, I'd email some reputable beauty schools and explain your situation (confined to a hospital, suffering from an extended illness, just want to look nice again). I bet someone will be willing to do it just for good karma and Facebook likes.

I'm sorry about your illness.
posted by showbiz_liz at 9:17 PM on November 6, 2014 [7 favorites]

Can you tell us which Portland? (and which part?) I used to live in one of them and might have friends who would have ideas and suggestions.
posted by spelunkingplato at 9:18 PM on November 6, 2014

Sorry about your hair, that sounds distressing. Have you asked the hospital social worker about your options? I would be surprised if the hospital didn't have a regular visiting hairdresser. It probably wasn't a priority while you were in the ICU, but surely they have someone who looks after the hair of extended stay patients. The nursing facility may have someone who does this too - you could call them and ask to book in for a haircut once you get there, or you could ask for their hairdresser's name and see whether they're willing to come to you at the hospital.
posted by embrangled at 9:30 PM on November 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: Sorry for being so scattered. Yes, Portland Oregon. West side (St Vincent's hospital), skilled care, Hillsboro.
posted by batikrose at 9:31 PM on November 6, 2014

At the skilled nursing facility that a family member is residing currently, there is a small room set up as a beauty shop and they have a beautician that comes in twice a week. The cost is reasonable for the residents. So if you can wait until you are back at your skilled nursing facility, you might want to check with them.
posted by coolcoolkitty at 9:37 PM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

Oops, sorry, I read the text and missed the title.
posted by Jacqueline at 10:22 PM on November 6, 2014

Check out Thumbtack, Styleseat or Taskrabbit for amateur/ad hoc hair stylists. Contact one of those folks listed that do mobile haircuts and let them know the situation (or create a job with your pricing on it and accept bids on Taskrabbit). A simpler method could be posting this as a gig on Craigslist. Good luck!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:41 PM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

It was also my experience that a skilled nursing facility would have someone who comes in a regular schedule to do hair, although you might have to wait longer than you would like to get an appointment. Also your case worker/social worker in the hospital might very well be able to help even if the nurses didn't have an answer.
posted by metahawk at 11:00 PM on November 6, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I presume the nurses would have told you if there were a hairdresser available, and you asked them already.

I think your next step is to connect with ADRC (Aging and Disability Resource Connection). It is their job to help you with things like this.

Since you are going to transfer to a skilled nursing facility, it's because you need assistance with ADLs (activities of daily living) which is why these assisted living facilities exist in the first place. Self-grooming is one of those ADLs so I am sure they will be able to help you.
posted by rada at 4:38 AM on November 7, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I used to see a great stylist on Belmont named Randy Block. He is independent but he rents a chair from Propoganda Salon. He talked often about how he goes to nursing facilities and he does conditioning treatments every time you see him. His page says he charges $25 for a haircut. His number is 503-481-4627.

One thing that helped me when I was unable to wash my hair was using these shampoo caps. They seriously work and they condition a lot. Walgreens in Portland has them. Combine with a detangling spray and/or leave in conditioner (or just something simple like coconut oil) and be patient with your matts. Brush your hair with a soft bristle brush, natural if you can. Really sorry for your injury.
posted by sweltering at 5:03 AM on November 7, 2014 [5 favorites]

I presume the nurses would have told you if there were a hairdresser available, and you asked them already.

Not necessarily. ICU nurses are concerned primarily with patients' immediate medical needs - they are there to keep seriously ill people alive. Personal grooming is not going to be top of their priority list. Social workers are there to take care of you as a whole person, and they may be more informed about the various services that are available across different wards of the hospital. They may also be able to refer you to charitable services that can help.
posted by embrangled at 4:10 PM on November 8, 2014

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