Japanese-born hairstylist Masami Hosono doesn't believe that the way someone wants to wear their hair has anything to do with gender, so it simply won't be playing a factor at her salon, Vacancy Project, located in New York City, any longer.
At the beginning of April, Hosono decided to forego pricing based on people's gender identities, and clients no longer have to select "male" or "female" when booking an appointment online.
"I always wondered why we separate our hair styles based on gender?," the stylist wrote on Instagram in early March. "It's really diverse in a spectrum of preference! Many of my clients also identify gender neutral or transgender so...the aim is a gender neutral salon."
Starting April, I am equalizing women and men's hair cut. They will both be $80. I always wondered why we separate our hair styles based on gender? It's really diverse in a spectrum of preference! Many of my clients also identify gender neutral or transgender so...the aim is a gender neutral salon 💇 cheers !
Many of her followers are over the moon about this news.
"Yes!! This is such a good move and I've always wondered the same while working at a salon as a receptionist," one person said. "Kind of frustrating paying more as a woman even though men's cuts are cheaper and I have short hair!"
"I think it's only fair to have both the same price," another added.
But for Hosono, who identifies as queer, this decision was not just personal — it was political.
"I’ve been thinking about what I can do as a hairstylist, a creator, and a queer woman," she tells Allure. "Trump has said so many negative things to transgender people and women, I want to be like, ‘You are not helpless.’ I can make a change with the price of a haircut."
Last year, Halifax-based salon Kara's Urban Day Spa announced they planned to axe gender-based pricing, and now determines the cost of a cut based on how long it will take the stylist to complete.
"If I'm doing a pixie haircut on a woman or a short haircut on a man, it takes me the same amount of time to do it," the salon's artistic director Kevyn Martell explained to the CBC. "If it's a woman who has the same length of hair as a man, why are we charging her $20 more because she's a woman?"
We hope to see more hair salons follow the lead of these forward-thinking stylists!
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