An Afternoon Haircut in a Foreign Country

So you want to get a haircut in a different country??

My hair has gone through a lot of changes on this trip and right before it. One month before we started I had long brown hair for the wedding that I promptly chopped 13 inches off and dyed it bleach blonde! The blonde was fun for a while, but then my dark roots started growing out and I thought that having blonde hair might not be the best camouflage for Central and South America. Ryan is the only blonde we need in this relationship…

To get rid of the blonde, I box dyed it dark brown which began to fade back to blonde after 6 months. The ends were fried and instead of hair it felt like straw. I decided it was time to spend some money and go to a salon and get a proper cut and color.

The salon I went to was in Cartagena, Colombia. Since my Spanish is not that great I came up with a list of words that I thought might be helpful:

Extremos- ends /trim
Pelo- hair
Color- color
Similar – similar
Por favor-please


After stuttering those words out and with the help of Ryan and a random salon goer my hairdresser whisked me into the chair and immediately started cutting. Things were going great for a while until she kept cutting and cutting and eventually my little trim turned into a new hairstyle!
I was very apprehensive and nervous, I debated on telling her to stop or thats enough, but I decided to to let her do her thing- she is the professional and she knows what she is doing.


It was actually a really enjoyable appointment aside from her talking and texting on her phone, stopping to watch tv, and dropping the scissors and the comb on the ground. She even bought Ryan and I maiz con leche drinks from a vendor outside. (Maiz con leche is a typical warm drink in the latin-americas).

Next, it was time to color my hair. She matched it and showed me what color she chose and it was gray! Ummm… I freaked out. All my cool was out the window. I started saying loudly “Me pelo no gris!” (my hair is not gray!) She laughed and said not to worry. At least I think she did.

I thought again- it’s okay they are in charge if it turns out gray they will fix it or I will buy a box dye and make it brown later.


Finally, she washed, dried, and styled my hair and it turned out great- not gray, but great! She and I were both so happy how it turned out we took pictures together and we ended up becoming BFFs.



Getting your haircut is some serious stuff.


So the moral of the story is to just let go. I mean seriously, if you’re driving through the Americas I think we can handle a hair cut and color. It is just hair.

The whole cut and color only ended up costing $30. Just like everything else ask for the price first. Price is negotiable! I didn’t and I probably could have had it cheaper. Don’t get gringo-ed!


Leave a Reply