Introduction: Get a Free Haircut - Fashion Styling 2.0 - Crowd-Sourced Hairstyling

Picture of Get a Free Haircut - Fashion Styling 2.0 - Crowd-Sourced Hairstyling

It's a dog-eat-dog world. Nothing comes for free in this world. So they say...but they clearly haven't been on the internet, where creative common licenses, knowledge sharing, yelp, and open sourced programs reign.

Web 2.0 seems to have a lot to share with life 1.0. This project is an attempt to show people that they should open up a bit and get out of their personal bubbles; there's no buddy list online. So get off your iphone, quit texting, and look around you, there may be a free haircut, and friends waiting.

How to get a free hair cut in San Francisco, short video:

Directors Cut

Step 1: Gather Your Materials:

Picture of Gather Your Materials:

For this instructable you won't need much:

1) A pair of haircutting scissors. I bought some nice ones from the corner store.
2) Some combs.
3) A printer and some paper.
4) Yarn.
5) Eye protection
6) A friendly smile.
7) Too much hair.

8) (optional) A friend to accompany you.

You should also make a sign so people understand what's going on... At least a little. I've attached my sign below, you could even use this if you'd like... Print it off and tape it to the floor near you. I put a limit on the number of snips people could take to allow more people a chance at my head.

Step 2: Sit on the Floor.

Picture of Sit on the Floor.

Once you've gathered all your materials and you've tied the scissors around your neck it's time to hit the road. Find a busy intersection in the nearest major city. I chose the Victoria's Secret near Union Square in San Francisco as it's a popular destination. Tape your sign to the floor and hold our your scissors as in picture 2.

You //will// need to be vocal about why you're sitting there with scissors around your neck. So have a script planned. For me it was, "Hey would you like to take two snips?" The fact that it was a limited number showed people that it was not a long term commitment, and the word snip did not imply immaculate haircut so more people were inclined to go for it.

Step 3: Troubleshooting

Picture of Troubleshooting

You're sitting on the ground getting cold and your hair is not getting any shorter:
You may need to prompt people by allowing your assistant/friend to take a few snips to show people that it's OK to mess with your head.

The Police come and ask you to get off the sidewalk:
Move over a ventilation grate.

Your hair is irregularly cut.
You need to be vocal about where people need to cut. Let them know that the front of your hair is still too long. Also you might need `to be cool with this bit.

Your haircut is patchy.
Wait, you'll probably come across a hairstylist.

The final haircut looks bad.

Step 4: Let It Happen

Picture of Let It Happen

Now that you know how to set everything up and how to solve problems should they arise, just sit back and enjoy your haircut.

If you find yourself in this picture stream. Please comment or write me. I'd love to hear about your experience. Thank you for cutting my hair!

Step 5: Enjoy!

Picture of Enjoy!

Enjoy your new haircut. Best part is you'll always be reminded every time you look in the mirror!


UbaidS2 (author)2016-05-23

Here you can find the material for Hair Cutting, Scissors / Shears

UbaidS2 (author)2016-05-23

Here you can find the material for Hair Cutting, Scissors / Shears

nanaverm (author)2016-01-19

A "safer" way would be to post a note at a barber school offering yourself as a subject/model for training on. I get my hair cut at a local cosmetology school (for $4.50) as a senior female.

CobyUnger made it! (author)2016-01-03

Ended up having to shave my head. As it turns out, my friends are not so good at this hair cut thing.

PowellMade (author)2015-02-03

Cool idea!!

fantine (author)2014-04-18

Why all this fear of the cutters? They are more likely overcoming their fear of getting involved and worried about giving a bad cut! Then I'll bet they are happy they stopped and did it and smiled and laughed. People with bad vibes are not going to get involved, especially in a case with a camera running, but even if people walking by are going to watch the show.

swildman (author)2013-08-18

This is awesome! Probably one of the best articles I've read! Love it! I have to agree with Plo Koon though. What's to keep someone from giving you a severe bald spot? Lol. But again dude! AWESOME instructable!!! Very much enjoyed reading it and looking at the pics!

Plo Koon (author)2012-12-15

This dont seem like a very gud idea to me. wat if u get some nut who thinks its funy to CHOP CHOP on ur head and leave u with 2 bald spots? or worse, chop ur ear?

papayafrenzy (author)2012-10-06

Dude, you are a total babe magnet. Let me know if you ever need a wingman.

thaicares (author)2011-08-10

I LOVE THIS IDEA!!! if anyone has thought of how you can crowd source anything else like this plz PLZ plz PLZ tell me cause I don't have enough hair to cut and I JUST LOVE THIS IDEA!!!

ADIAN HERRERA (author)thaicares2012-03-30

you could crowd source a massage or perhaps any board game, you can set it up and have people play for a move or too and see if you or the crowd wins or a painting/street art, ask people to make a few marks on your medium and see the end result lol or even some soup (ever heard of the story stone soup? :D

acaig (author)ADIAN HERRERA2012-09-01

I suppose stone soup is the first crowd sourcee xample assuming of course that there was some fact in the folk tale I dont think it would work around here except prehaps in brighton people are slightly less uptight there and may not run a mile when confronted by someone carrying a sign let alone pointy sharp sissors the art sounds good though

lingersoll (author)2011-06-12

I LOVE IT! I may seriously consider doing this in the future if I can ever convince my partner that I don't need the long hairs. >^_^<

chicopluma (author)2011-04-10

look out, a cop
police officer- umm, can i cut your hair

caarntedd (author)2010-05-16

This is great. I wish I had some hair to cut.

mitchell931993 (author)2009-10-08

i just had the best idea. i was thinking in taking on the worlds greatest shave, and i could do this like the day before i do the final shave (complete thing). do like a two snips two bucks. and if i end up getting agood haircut out of it i could take some pics and just hand them to the hairstylist when my hair comes back

thanks for the idea bro

To be honest, if I saw someone with a sign that said 2 snips for 2 bucks, I'd pay just to take the longest two snips right at the roots. Because I would be mean like that if you're asking me to pay you to do something for you. Haha. :)

mg0930mg (author)mitchell9319932010-02-28

Who would pay you to cut your hair?

misses_soulful (author)2010-05-14

how fun!! I would love to sit there right next to someone that did this and watch people's reactions. As a woman, I wouldn't dare let just anyone touch my hair... its difficult enough to find a great hair stylist. But as a guy, its easy for you guys to wing it, have fun with it, because it'll grow back soon enough! Hey, worst comes to worst, buy a set of clippers and buzz it all off! Haha. LOVE the free spirit you had to do this!!! Wish I could've seen this being done in person.

janerazor (author)2010-05-13

Well, glad it worked out for you, but I wouldn't do this if you paid me. Way too risky.

clockworkdoorbell (author)2010-05-11

 Great idea.. bring it to the Fringe

Transquesta (author)2010-05-09

Yeah, this idea is all cool, edgy and stuff, but I'd be afraid some random psycho would saunter by, grab the scissors out of my hand, bury them in my skull and be-bop across the street before anyone recovered enough from the shock to realize what happened.

Um, call me Mr. Buzzkill as you will, but these ain't the times guys.

guggenheim (author)Transquesta2010-05-10

The thing that WILL happen is what you envision in your mind. So why not think everyone will give you a nice haircut? That's what you'll receive for sure.

Transquesta (author)guggenheim2010-05-10

Good plan for life in gen, but the trouble is what the other guy's thinking. :-)

guggenheim (author)Transquesta2010-05-11

You cause it too :)

djebel (author)Transquesta2010-05-10

its more like: aint THESE the TIMES? getting a free haircut and a spot on the local news for an act of random violence is "IN-TRE" (lookup 'outre', then think OPPOSITE).  anyhow, kids were gearing up for WW uno a century ago...we just have the speedy erosion of civil rights to worry about.  i canNOT believe that the miranda rights in the us were only sacrosanct for approx 46 years. yikes! where IS jack webb when ya need him??????

anything you type CAN and will be used AGAINST (not FOR...only AGAINST) you. remember that cuz the cops aint gonna be informing you.
sry for the off topic idea. kudos!

Transquesta (author)djebel2010-05-10

If'n I needs a free hair cut, I'll get myself a soup bowl and a pair of garden shears. ROFL!

Anyway, you're right about one thing.  It's a quasi-cool 'statement' and a more-than-decent way to get people out of their comfort zone.  Getting people out of their pods is a GOOD thing.

Hiroak (author)2010-05-10

This is cool and all the girls that gave you the cuts were good looking, this is a great way to pickup the ladies. 

jhante (author)2010-05-10

I love it!  It's so hard to get strangers to interact with each other in a positive way -- this is a great way to let people open up and have some fun.

uglymike (author)2010-05-09

Awesome idea.  I may have to try this at the next First Friday Art Walk. 
Best of all, if your hair get's too screwed up you can always shave it.


Dr.Hax (author)2010-05-09

Those shoes in pic #1 are soooo cute.  I want!  Grr.

Awesome job on the crowd sourcing!

highwattart (author)2010-05-09

Lotta trust man but a pretty neat performance art..and a free haircut. These people seemed to respect your hair looks...Cool.

gustavo.leal (author)2010-05-09

Yaaaaaay! Aewosome! Gotta do tht. just wait a lil bit til my hair is fully grow again.

bonfire817 (author)2010-05-09

I would be afraid someone would just stab me with the scissors!

shizuyuki (author)2010-05-09

Man! I wish I was there to take part in this! So awesome and glad that your haircut actually came out pretty good, especially for a free one! Great 'structable!

MiriadaTheCarrot (author)2010-05-09

Awesome. 10/10 for craziness.

wingman358 (author)2010-05-09

This is an excellent idea! Get a haircut and meet some adventurous people at the same time! All for free! Spectacular :)

dominic.tarr (author)2010-05-09

way to go man!

how did it feel before you started?

you had no idea what would happen but went with it anyway... it seems like one of those times...

how come those always turn out really well?

moosofa (author)2010-01-16

i'm bringing safety scissors... that guy with the tag "scissors leash" looked a bit off his rocker.

ballagie (author)2010-01-09

I guess a lot of things can be free. A good attitude and a smile will get you a long way.  My girlfriend is a hairdresser though, so this particular idea might be considered "conflict of interest" in my case (and haircuts are always free around here). Good instructable tho!

Star Rust (author)2009-10-02

Reminds me of Yoko Ono's "Cut Piece" performance.

M4industries (author)2009-09-23

Big risk for murder or assault. They could just yank the cord around your neck. Or just use the scisors for what they werent intended for.

Foaly7 (author)2009-06-14

What if you get Arrested?

M4industries (author)Foaly72009-09-23

What if you get arrested!

Lol JK!

bellaessa (author)2009-06-19

Wow! That was seriously amazing. You are one ballsy man!! I'm not too sure how well this would go over on the streets of reno though. . . Maybe I'll give it a go?! I'll let you know, Maybe I'll do it with my group of friends. . . :) Thank You for Posting this. And ps You rock that hair cut!

XkidXhavocX (author)2009-05-13

absolutely brilliant

argentum86 (author)2008-07-23

wow!! very original idea... maybe I would stand by a bus stop and allow people to give more snips... it will be done faster, and perhaps the less people that snip the most homogeneous your style will look.. anyway, I'm gonna try it in Buenos Aires, Argentina. If it goes terribly wrong mommy will fix it lol....

jc817 (author)argentum862008-08-29

Terrible idea. Public transportation attracts insane people. It's a proven fact. It's the same people at every bus stop and every train platform. You might get an interesting haircut from them though lol

XkidXhavocX (author)jc8172009-05-13

or an insane stab in the throat... lol, kinda

kgtateddy (author)argentum862008-07-24

noo, aca te roban la tijera y te afanan!! Trans: Noo, here (argentina) they will steal your scisor and mug you!

About This Instructable




Bio: Bilal Ghalib is interested in doing things that surprise him and inspire others. Let's create a future we want to live in together.
More by lamedust:From Crap to Craft - How to Take Advantage of Disadvantage Robotic Music Player and Sequencer With LittleBits AKA Fruityloops IRLProsthetics Modification for Pain Relief of Pressure Points
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