I absolutely love this place. For a genuine vintage haircut there's few better places I've tried loads and I always come back to Carnaby St. Rockabilly tunes on the jukebox, tiki and leopard-skin decor, rock'n'roll memorabilia all around this is a corner of rock'n'roll heaven.
Mr Ducktail is an artist with the scissors and flick-knife. A perfect haircut every time. And it's value for money: I'm lucky to have hair that pretty much does what it's told, but I once had a cut here that lasted 7 months before I needed it cut again.
A gents cut costs around £25, and you can get your razored back and sides neatened up for less in between full cuts. You can also pick up Mr Ducktail's own pomade (made by Hairgum) which has great hold, plus Mr Ducktail's own cola-scented grease-stripping shampoo for when Head & Shoulders just can't cut it.
Actually getting in is a bit of a lottery: there's no appointments (except Monday, for double the price); but we're talking personal service here, not a row of chairs shearing you and getting you out the door. Go when you have a day off, or be prepared to get up early on the weekend (especially if there's a rockabilly event on: I got there at 11.30 the other day, not knowing it was the day of the Rockabilly Rave, and there were 7 guys in front of me). But time it right and you'll get the best haircut of your life
I'm the fancy-dress queen. I can do makeup. I can customise clothes. But for the life of me, I can't make anything interesting happen with my hair.
So when we hit on the Blitz Party for New Year's Eve, I knew I was going to have to get my barnet sorted out professionally. Since the Powder Room abandoned their Soho premises, I was a bit stuck, but It's Something Hell's has a loyal press following and that (along with the fact that I'd left it far too late and was incredibly lucky to get an appointment) was the deciding factor.
Most non-Yelp reviews and comments appear to be from incredibly up themselves male rockabilly hipsters, so I had considerable reservations. Luckily this pretentiousness hasn't pervaded the salon itself. Despite the raspberry-hued walls, leopard-print lampshades, vintage film posters, staff in full 1950s clobber and general Shoreditch vibe, they didn't flinch at my unmadeup face and Primark jumper. I was given a look book for inspiration, but unlike the salon at TopShop you don't just pick one of six retro-inspired styles and hope it works; they'll work with your requirements, decade of choice and hair type to decide what's best for you.
Service was slow and a bit scatty; I was left waiting for quite some time, although they did apologise and everybody was super friendly. In the end my actual style didn't take long at all, and I was delighted with the finished result. Miss Betty put a hairnet over the curls which I didn't remove until the last possible minute, and it lasted (at least in essence) through drizzly rain, gale-force winds, multiple sweaty tube journeys and then the Blitz Party itself. Seriously impressive.
I was slightly annoyed that they couldn't tell me exactly how much it would cost (all Mr Ducktail said on the phone was that styling prices started from £30, I think). Also the card machine was broken but nobody told me until I came to pay, so I had to go out in the rain with my newly-coiffed 'do and find cash and then come all the way back. Considering I arrived ten minutes early for my appointment, it would have made sense to mention it then.
However it really is a lovely place, not remotely condescending or judgemental, and everyone who entered left looking fabulous. For future fancy-dress hairstyling emergencies, I'll definitely be back.
These guys make the most adorable couple of French rockabilly haircutters I have ever met, ok so they are the only ones I have ever met.
So I know it was a couple months ago since I went, but I still think about it all the time. I have managed to mantain the haircut that she gave me, and i plan on going back to her. Unfortunately I can't afford to have her cut my hair everytime I need a trim, so I have been trimming my own fringe and I couldn't make the trek all the way to Carnaby street, so i went to a shop behind my house (which I wrote a review for, and I will probably never go there again.)
But I loved it, I wanted everything in the shop. i want the shop to be my house, I want mr and Mrs. Ducktail (if that's their real names) to be my friends and I want them to invite me to their house in hopes that It's just as rockabillied out as their salon.
This is a wonderful place to get your haircut!! Straight out the 1950s! They have a Jukebox instore playing all my favourites too and the decor is delicious.
Miss Betty and Mr Ducktail can produce pretty much any hairstyle for men and women from the 50's... Miss Betty convinced me to go for a "Bettie Page" bangs and hairstyle the first time I went in and I've not looked back over the last 18months or so!
Well worth a treat for a special occasion - but be warned, it's addictive!
Oh what a joy this salon in Carnaby Street is!!! I recently visited with my fiance, and found the salon to be clean, bright, and totally rockin. Mr. Ducktail and the fab Miss Betty made us both feel welcome and we left looking a million dollars
Try this wonderful salon, you'll not be dissapointed!!!
OK, so I haven't actually had my hair done here (I could never pull off that retro pin-up model look), but this shop is such a hoot. Run by two french hairdressers (Mr. Ducktail and his wife Miss Betty), it's all red velvet and animal print, with a jukebox playing in the corner - think Hollywood glamour meets rock n' roll meets a hint of punk (a modern day Marilyn Monroe/James Dean/Elvis). Indeed, Mr. D specialises in "bad boy" cuts, including a special "Switchblade Cut" (yes, using a knife), and Miss B does classic Von Teese coifs and other glam updos.
They do "regular" cuts and colour as well... but if you find yourself in this rockabilly parlour, how could you resist something a little out of the ordinary?
So I didn't get my haircut here...but I was sent on a mission by my brother to visit them while I was in London and get a picture of Mr. Ducktail and get some of his pomade. It's a really cute spot (careful - the address doesnt match up. It's really on the 2nd floor of a mini mall.. and to us Americans, thats the 3rd floor) with red velvet & leopard. Mr. Ducktail was such a nice guy and so was his staff. They thought it was funny that we wanted a picture of them but they were very nice and understanding at how amazed we were with everything. Wish we could actually get our haircut there next time - not just admire!
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