Every issue, we will interview someone living in Reykjavík or just visiting the city, so as to share with you, dear reader, the trials and tribulations of daily life here in the capital.
This issue’s human: Haraldur Bogi, Barber at Barber Bar
What’s it like cutting hair for Icelanders?
“Not here, but the last place I worked at, I had a 90-year-old man sit in my chair. I had just finished his cut, placed my middle and forefingers on his temples, and examined the mirror to check his sideburns were even.
“I notice a single eyebrow hair sticking out of his right eyebrow. It must have been over ten centimetres long, a single white strand. Without even thinking about it, I pick up my scissors and snip. The old man leaps from the chair, ‘What are you doing? That’s my wisdom hair!’
“He freaks out. He keeps shouting. I had to give him the haircut for free and pay him off with a few bottles of free shampoo before he finally left.”
What about tourists and visitors? What do they want when they get a haircut in Reykjavík?
“They want a haircut like an ‘Icelander.’ It’s mostly fades, either high or mid-taper fades. It’s all about classic looks from the 1940s and 1950s. Actually, I don’t think men’s haircuts have been so clean and cool since the 1940s. It’s sick.”
Why hair? What got you into this?
“At first I worked on cars. I was a mechanic, but I didn’t like it. My girlfriend got tired of me complaining about work all the time and one morning when I woke up she said, ‘I enrolled you for hairdressing school.’ And that was it.”