Thursday, July 7, 2022

Urban men jumping on the Bald Bandwagon

From the sophisticated guy in the sleek Mercedes Benz convertible to the young student in neatly polished grasshopper shoes, going around Gaborone, one can’t help but notice the high number of people sporting shaven heads.

Even local celebrities like Yarona Fm Programmes and Acting Productions Manager, Uyapo Big Duke Khupe, have jumped on the bald bandwagon, joining international stars like actor Bruce Willis and musician Joe Thomas, who have always opted for a clean shaven head.

Until recently, bald haircut, also referred to as chiskop, letwadi or chisel, has not always been the first choice of a haircut for most Batswana men.

Instead people with such a hair cut were rather made fun of, earning them names like lepanditi (convict), as that is what people used to associate one with a chiskop.

“Back in the days, high profile people as well as Socialites used to come in only for S-curl, brush cut or Pomade but these days we get very few clients for those styles and chiskop is the in thing,” says Thema Pipadibe, a hairdresser at CJ’s, an upmarket hair salon located at Game City Mall in Gaborone.

Osman Mohammed, owner of The Barber shop at BBS Mall, who said in an interview that this change in trends has made a positive impact on his business, echoes Pipadibe’s words.

“We are getting more upmarket clients who come in for chiskop than we had a few years ago and business is booming,” said Osman, who also revealed that “haircut is therapeutic and can build up confidence”. “It’s simple, if you are not feeling good or stressed up, I would advise one to come in for a haircut and you will feel much better afterwards. Men with no hair also have the advantage of showing off their full facial features and women find this very sexy if not masculine,” Osman declared.

According to Osman, there are two ways of fashioning chiskop. One is with a hair clipper, and the other is with a razor, depending on the type of skin.

Quizzed on the safety of the latter, Osman is quick to point out that there is a skill involved that prevents the client from getting razor bumps on their heads.

“We use a new razor for every client,” he said. “With the clipper we shorten the hair first then wash ones head with shampoo using warm water, this helps to open the pores for an easier hair cut. After that, we massage oil onto the scalp.”

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