A bad haircut is wholly unpleasant, as is a poor dye job, accidental Sun-In overdose and/or singed ends courtesy of a candle catastrophe. Thankfully, this city is full of stylists ready to turn your DIY highlights into something that doesn't resemble Pepé Le Pew. Here are our favorite salons in the city; leave yours in the comments (though we'll understand if you don't want to make it even harder to get an appointment for yourself).
Best Salons For Curly Hair
DEVACHAN SALON: Those of us curly-haired humans who have NOT followed in the footsteps of Curl Traitor Taylor Swift have a hard time finding stylists who aren't baffled by our ravishing natural tresses (no, the solution to taming curls is NOT to blow hair straight first, thanks for making 1998 THE WORST, Cozy's Cuts for Kids). Enter Devachan, a salon specifically targeted to curly folk yearning to let their hair run wild and free. Cuts here will certainly run into the triple digits, but it's worth it if you're only getting one every six months or so (and they last a while!). Stylists cut your hair dry and go curl-by-curl, plus they'll teach you how to keep your hair healthy and hydrated long after you hop off the chair.
The Devachan crew are also the masterminds behind the DevaCurl hair product line, so if you're a curly person looking to go suds-free, you can pick up No and Lo-Poo gear from them post-appointment.
Devachan has two SoHo locations: 425 Broome Street between Crosby and Lafayette Streets (212-274-8686, devachansalon.com), and 560 Broadway between Prince and Spring Streets (212-274-8686, devachansalon.com).
HEADCHOP: Though HeadChop will handle all types of hair, they specialize in curls or waves, and stylists here certainly know their way around a ringlet. Martha Ellen and Elma do dry cuts here (post-cut wash & style is an added option), which is perfect for anyone whose hair isn't pin-straight, not that you should avoid this spot if it is. They like to focus on cuts that'll grow out well, so you'll never be stuck with that weird triangular hangover after a few months. Plus, the prices won't kill you—dry cuts here run $60 for women and $40 for men, though added style, color and the like will cost extra depending on the treatment.
HeadChop is located at 86 Berry Street between North 8th and 9th Streets in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (347-844-9635, headchop.com).
Best Salon For Color
THE PAINT BOX: The Paint Box is a color-based salon, so it's not necessarily the sort of place you should commit to if you're, say, looking to chop off eight inches. But if it's a sexy ombre you seek, colorists Mayumi and Jenny will do the job right—plus they'll ply you with alcohol, which is something you need sometimes when you agree to a single process color job. Color work runs $110 to $350 depending on the treatment, plus Mayumi will do cuts for $80 (men $50) if you're looking for a quick style update along with the dye job.
The Paint Box is located at 156 Driggs Avenue between Russell and Humboldt Streets in Greenpoint, Brooklyn (347-501-0253, thepaintboxbk.com).
Best Men's Cuts
Persons of Interest, Smith Street (via Facebook)
PERSONS OF INTEREST: For menfolk looking for a stylish treat, Persons of Interest does slick cuts, shaves and beard trims out of their hip Williamsburg and Carroll Gardens spaces. True, the place is a little trilby-chic, but the haircuts are great, they play solid music, and you get to enjoy a cold beer pre-cut, which is always a bonus. Prices run $40 for a cut, $40 for a shave and $15 for a beard trim, though you can score a combo shave/cut for $75.
Persons of Interest is located at 82-84 Havemeyer Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-218-9100, personsofinterestbklyn.com) and at 299 Smith Street between Union and Sackett Street in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn (718-858-5300, personsofinterestbklyn.com).
TOMCATS BARBERSHOP: Tomcats got a mention in our Best Men's Shaves roundup last year, but it's worth giving a shout out to their cuts, too. It's "rockabilly" themed and there's a good chance you'll walk out looking like Carl Perkins or Buddy Holly, but there's nothing wrong with that! Cuts are $30, though a full wash, cut and blow dry will run you $60. And yes, they will feed you free beer if you so desire.
Tomcats is located at 135 India Street between Franklin Street and Manhattan Ave in Greenpoint, Brooklyn (718-349-9666, tomcatsbarbershop.com).
TOMMY GUNS/LUDLOW BLUNT: London transplant Tommy Guns landed on the Lower East Side in 2008, eventually cementing itself as a stalwart style spot—complete with a barbershop stick and old school chairs—when it comes to men's cuts and shaves. Tommy Guns has since opened a Williamsburg location and changed its name to Ludlow Blunt, but the LES standby still remains one of the city's best barbershops. Cuts are $75 for men and $95 for women, with color and conditioning treatments prices varying.
Tommy Guns/Ludlow Blunt has two locations in NYC: 138 Ludlow Street between Stanton and Rivington Streets on the Lower East Side (212-477-1151, ludlowblunt.com); and at 85 North 3rd Street between Berry Street and Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-388-8288, ludlowblunt.com).
BUMBLE AND BUMBLE: This SoHo salon (with a UES outpost) tends to top all the best cut lists, and for good reason. They employ expert stylists who specialize in everything from razor cuts to short cuts to curly hair to color, and they've been known to save a few heads that have been ravaged by bad hack and dye jobs in the past.
Prices here are no joke—basic cuts run $99 to $250, and style and color cost extra. But if you opt for their "Model Project," you can get a free cut, style and color, provided you do not mind putting your hair in the hands of a cosmetology student.
Bumble and Bumble is located at 415 West 13th Street between 9th Avenue and Washington Street in the West Village (212-521-6500, bumbleandbumble.com) and at 146 East 56th Street between Lexington and 3rd Avenues in Midtown East (212-521-6500, bumbleandbumble.com).
WHITTEMORE HOUSE SALON There are a slew of stylists at this West Village spot that are ready to transform your bedraggled hair into something that won't cause your date to abandon you midway through. Trims, cuts, color and the like await you in a salon fashioned after an old-timey English parlor, and though prices are steep—women's haircuts start at $150 and can climb much, much higher—if you need to update your look and have cash to burn, this is the place to do it.
Whittemore is located at 45 Grove Street between Bedford and Bleecker Streets in the West Village (212-242-8880, whittemorehousesalon.com).
THE DRAWING ROOM: As its name suggests, The Drawing Room's stylists, helmed by owner Clyde Elezi, like to look at hair as an art, with each strand looking to be molded into a MoMA-worthy masterpiece. The curly-haired are welcome, as are those in need of color, straightening treatments/perms, or any exciting style update. Cuts here run anywhere from $80 to $200, with color, extensions and other treatments priced from $75 to well into the triple digits, so save a visit here for something special.
The Drawing Room is located at 148 Spring Street between Wooster Street and Broadway in SoHo (212-226-2600, thedrawingroomny.com).
Best Quick Cut
FOX & JANE: Fox & Jane, which debuted on the Lower East Side in 2011, has since spread all over the city (and to San Diego), which is convenient if you like getting cuts close to your house, though finding the right stylist might be more of a crapshoot. Still, Fox & Jane does a more than solid job on most heads of hair, providing customers with funky cuts and stellar color work for less than a fancier salon. Prices here start at $64 and go up to $84 depending on hair length, though a blowout is included, a bonus for those of us who've accidentally forked over $50 extra for straight hair.
Fox & Jane has a number of locations in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Visit their website for details.