A Haircut in Rome

When in Rome…get a “hair experience”. I have had two “Roman” hair cuts in the past two years.

Last year, my hair experience was at Jean Louis David’s Salon….
Just a few steps from Campo di Fiori in Rome I found THE place to get my hair cut. I had been searching…maybe more like eyeing up every hair salon (parruchieri) that we walked by.  Luigi’s comment was “Are you sure you’re brave enough to get a hair cut in Rome?”  Why not?  It will be another first, plus, I was going to do this alone… yeah right.

I walked through the doors of the Jean Louis David Salon and asked the cool looking male receptionist if he spoke English.  He said “Yezzzzzzzzzz”.  I asked if I could get my hair cut.  He said “Yezzzzzzzz”.  Perfect English.  I asked if I needed an appointment etc.  He said… well, he didn’t say anything.  He looked at me with a blank  “I don’t have a clue what you just said” look.  Luigi came to my rescue.

There was no backing out. I was in the hands of Ivan, the Stylist.  I don’t know what happened to Jean or Louis or David. I got Ivan. I had Luigi translating to both Ivan, the stylist and Raffaele, the cool receptionist, that I was a little nervous about my haircut.  The discussion went on for a good five minutes before I was finally whisked off to the shampoo chair.

Luigi was going to leave me there… in the hands of Ivan, the Stylist and Raffaele, the cool “yezzzzzzzz” man, but he decided to stay and bring out his camera to “shoot” the cut, at the same time acting as an interpreter.

This turned Ivan, the Stylist into Ivan, the Actor.

Ivan “performing”

  I think he missed his calling.  There I was, sitting there, letting Ivan “perform” and in the mirror I could see Luigi snapping photos, Raffaele, the cool “yezzzzzzzz” man standing beside Ivan, the Actor/Stylist, watching the performance, as well as another cool looking (but unnamed) stylist.  Oh yeah… I also spotted a lady obviously in the middle of having her hair dyed sneak over to see what the show was all about.  I have to admit Ivan was entertaining. My haircut? I have had better, but none as entertaining.

Things never change. This year, once again my hair was out of control. Not long after arriving in Rome, Luigi and I walked past the Jean Louis David Salon to check on Ivan, the Sylist. Ivan had moved on… maybe into acting? In fact, the salon name had changed too. But Mr. Cool Receptionist was still there.

That’s okay, I found José in Trastevere. I dragged Mr. Translator/Interpreter to “Taverna Di Bellezza” (who names a Hair Salon “Taverna”?) to get a “taglio capelli” appointment.  Done.  I was then in the Italian hands of Mara, the Stylist.  José was booked so Mara, the Stylist swooped me up.  It appeared that her English vocabulary was limited to “O-kay”.  When Luigi and I walked in for my appointment, half the staff rushed to greet me/us… none speaking English. I was reassured that one staff member spoke English…kind of.  She did nails, feet and moustaches – not hair. Great.

Taverna Di Bellezza in Trastevere

Luigi was not allowed to go home. I was put in the chair to wait while Luigi went from Italian to English to Italian trying to translate “foils”, “highlights” etc. He did amazingly well.  I was approached by the kind of English speaking Esthetician. “Do you want a manicure?” “No”. “Pedicure?” “No”…but I point to my overgrown eyebrows. She got it. In a few minutes, without leaving Mona, the Stylist’s chair, I had perfect eyebrows.

Mara, the Stylist

Mara, the Stylist took overhand Luigi was “off duty”. Two hours and still working on the “foils” Mara, the Stylist said “Tanti capelli!” (lots of hair!).  After almost four hours in the hands of Mara, I was highlighted, cut, dried and hair sprayed to a crisp. I liked my haircut and would recommend Mara but I would also like to try José. Next time.

Luigi had returned to the “Taverna” to pick me up so before we left the salon I suggested he make an appointment with José, the Stylist. He said “No way, José”


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