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A Cut Above: How to Throw a Kids' Haircut Party

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Lara Shriftman:It's no surprise that children typically don't enjoy a day at the hair salon.Instead of having to deal with all of the fuss and screams that go along with forcing your child to get a haircut, make it a fun experience by hosting a haircutting party at your own house!

Although many parents near me have been sending their children to the upscale Topiary Salon & Day Spa to get their hair cut, I decided it would be more fun for my son, Lucas, and his friends to get their hair cut together, so the experience could serve as a playdate as well!

Here are some helpful tips on how to plan your own "haircut party" at home:
  • Since this should be a small party, it's not necessary to make official invitations. Instead, send your guests a casual Evite or simply invite them by phone.
  • In order to avoid spending too much money, I suggest inviting between 5 and 10 guests. That way, it won't get too chaotic, and your hairdresser will be able to spend sufficient time cutting each child's hair. Remember: Always over-invite to a kids' party, because someone is bound to get sick, get fussy or have a conflicting naptime.
  • Call your child's favorite hairstylist and see if you can hire them to come over during their off-hours to cut the kids' hair. For my party, I had Lucas' hairdresser, Ruzanna, come over and cut everyone's hair in the makeshift salon that I'd created in my house.
  • The great thing about a haircut party is that you can throw it at any time and on any day that you want! You can make it a one-time party, or, if it's a success, you can make it a monthly get-together!
  • Make sure that your hairdresser knows the directions to your house far ahead of time, so she doesn't get lost trying to find it on the day of the party. Have her arrive 15 minutes early, so she has proper time to set up and discuss any last-minute details.
  • It's up to you to decide how the party will be paid for. Since the amount of guests coming to your party will be rather small, you can opt to pay for the whole party yourself. If you would like to invite more people, it's always a great idea to divide the price of the party between the parents whose children will be attending.
  • For the decor, I set up a makeshift hair-salon station in one room, so the kids would feel as if they were in a real hair salon while they were getting their hair cut! I placed a sheet on the floor, then set up a mirror and a chair for the kids to sit in while Ruzanna cut their hair. For a special touch, I had each of the children wear a smock. To get them excited for their haircuts, Igave them their own customized combs with their names on them.
  • Have your hairdresser give each child a bag of candy after she cuts their hair, so they'll remember her and want to go back to her in the future.
  • Since only one child gets his or her hair cut at a time, set up a play area in your house where the rest of your guests can have fun while they're waiting their turn.
  • The main purpose of a haircut party is the actual haircut itself. Therefore, it's not your responsibility to provide your guests with a wealth of food. Instead, opt for fun, light snacks such as bowls of Sensible Portions Veggie and Apple Straws, Harry & David's Moose Munch gourmet popcorn, Hansen's Organic Junior Juice and cut-up vegetables.
  • For a fun memento of your party, give each of your guests a custom envelope with their name and date on it, so they can put a lock of their hair inside and take it home with them.
  • If any of your guests' hair is long enough, suggest incorporating a charity into the party's theme.This is an excellent way to support a great cause!One of the girls who came to my party had very long hair; she agreed to donate it to the charity Locks of Love, which provides wigs for children who've lost their hair due to chemotherapy. My sister, Erika Koopman from C by Me Clothing, threw a haircut party at her boutique last summer, wherein she worked with the charity Wigs for Kids, which raises awareness about children battling leukemia and other cancers.
  • Hire an animal groomer and invite your guests to bring their pets as well. For my party, I had a groomer come cut the hair of my miniature Shih Tzu, Lulu Flynn!
  • Remember, a kid's haircut is NOT the same as an adult's. Engage the parents who attend by hiring someone to cut their hair, too!

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