Amid COVID-19, Calgarians are getting haircuts at home

Fresh Look: Wilhelm Dambitis, 19 months old, shows off his new look in Calgary on May 24. Jessica Turner recently gave her son his second-ever hair cut and his first at home. Despite wiggling in protest during the cut, Wilhelm is more than happy to show off his new look. (Photo by Dawn Ilg/The Press)

In Calgary, restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19 have left people stuck at home for months without visiting their local hairdresser for a haircut.

People have flooded YouTube for all sorts of how-to videos, leading YouTube to create a themed ad of “We’re all in this together”, featuring videos on how to garden, how to bake, and even how to give yourself a homemade haircut.

For parents, even before the pandemic, it wasn’t unusual to give their children haircuts at home, because it is more familiar to the child and it saves money.

Jessica Turner, a Calgary mom, recently gave her 19-month-old son Wilhelm his second-ever haircut and his first one at home.

“It was a venture and a half, we attempted scissors first but it didn’t go so well,” said Turner, recalling the event.

“We put Paw Patrol on the phone and we got the buzzers going, but then the buzzers died and he had half a haircut. We had to wait for the buzzers to charge a little more and by the time we tried to get them in again he was a wiggly little monkey trying to get through his father’s arms.”

This was Wilhelm’s second-ever haircut, his first one being in January. Turner added that the first haircut was a lot easier because he wiggled less.

“It turned out pretty good, there are some questionable spots, some long spots but we don’t feel like trying to hold him still again,” said Turner.

Turner had just come off of her maternity leave and found a new job when the pandemic started. She’s now staying at home with her son while her fiancé continues at work.

Turner has no big plans for any self-haircuts on herself, other than fixing any split ends that may occur, and her fiancé is happy leaving his hair to the professionals.

“You got to just do it, there’s no sense in trying to set anything up, it’s just a matter of catching them in a good mood and pinning them down when you get the chance,” said Turner, advising any parent thinking of giving their child a haircut from home.

Turner plans to continue giving Wilhelm haircuts from home to “spare” hairdressers from having to deal with the wiggly boy.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, government officials have asked the public to stay home as much as possible and avoid unnecessary travel. To some people that has meant spending a lot of time at home trying new things.

Rebecca Stedel, a cannabis budtender in Calgary, has decided to take this time at home to try a new haircut she’s always wanted to try and shaved her head entirely.

Stedel has decided to self-isolate at home and take time off of work and has been taking up new hobbies at home such as gardening.

“I’ve always wanted a boy’s haircut because I am gender-fluid but also growing up and seeing G.I. Jane,” said Stedel, speaking about her inspiration for shaving her head.

Cool Cut: Rebecca Stedel enjoys her new clean look in Calgary on May 24. In her time a home during the pandemic, Stedel has picked up new hobbies and a new look, and currently enjoys gardening and feeling the sun on her head. (Photo by Dawn Ilg/The Press)

Stedel credits quarantine for the final push to try her new look, because no one will see it until she goes out publicly, plus it gives her time to adjust to the haircut herself.

“I’m worried how it’s going to grow out in a couple of months, I don’t want to look like one of the Beatles,” said Stedel, referring to Ringo Starr, otherwise known as Sir Richard Starkey, famous drummer for The Beatles.

“I was worried there would be more dents and bumps from every time I’ve hit my head but I’m pretty surprised how smooth it is.” – Rebecca Stedel

Stedel has received a lot of positive feedback on her social media from friends and family on her new look. She says that she has not received any messages from men hitting on her like she used to, and she considers that a huge bonus.

Stedel’s advice to anyone thinking of shaving their head is “bend over the tub and shave your head upside down so you don’t get any hair on your back because it gets so itchy.”

Stedel plans to keep up her shaved look for now and looks forward to going back to work and seeing the reactions of customers to her new look.