Hair today, gone tomorrow

  • Student Guide
  • 15 September 2008
Hair today, gone tomorrow

The best hairdressers in Glasgow and Edinburgh

Shelley O'Neill talks you through where to get the best bang for your buck

A good hair cut usually gets put to the bottom of the to-do list when you're a student. It's hardly surprising when a cut and colour can cost more than your monthly food bill. Bad dye jobs and drunken fringe trims are regular occurrences when home hairdressing is attempted but there are plenty of ways to get your hair styled cheaply and we're here to help.

First, try your student discount. That little card is your ticket to hair heaven. Most salons offer a discount although there may be restrictions on when it can be used. Medusa Hairdressing in Edinburgh will knock off a whopping 20% at its three branches across the city between Monday and Thursday. Call round a few salons and ask about discounts, you might be pleasantly surprised.

The idea of becoming a model at a salon or academy may fill you with fear, but all students are supervised and most will be fully trained and just need someone to practice on. Saks Hair Academy in Glasgow are always looking for guinea pigs, sorry, models for their busy school, call 0141 222 2662 to book an appointment. The Rainbow Room also have a branch on Howard Street, Glasgow with a special academy price list where a cut and colour starts from £43 and permanent straightening cost only £42 from an Academy Director.

Boys often have an easier time when choosing hair cuts, it's normally cheaper and short hair grows more quickly so mistakes aren't such a traumatic experience. If you have particularly short hair or want a basic style, you won't be able to beat traditional barbers. They can do more than a short back and sides and you probably won't even need to make an appointment.

At the cheapest end of the scale, it is always tempting to try a DIY haircut when it's out of control and you're desperate but don't be silly. A trusted friend might be able to give you a tiny trim but don't let them get scissor happy. Home dye kits are also relatively easy to use, just remember to do a patch test to check for allergies and always follow the directions. Semi permanent or wash in wash out colours are the safest option and are great for trying a colour before taking the permanent plunge.

Your time as a student is the best time to experiment with your look, you don't have a proper job yet and there will always be someone with worse hair than you.

Edinburgh Hairdressers


37 Leith Street, 0131 556 9999
A trendy salon that is always looking for models for staff training. The models are required for colouring, cutting and make up treatments.

Bibi Beauty

118 Bruntsfield Place, 0131 229 9851
A fantastic and original salon, set up by Laura Nolan in 2002 to provide
a unique experience in beauty treatments. Another salon that offers 20% student discount.

Cheynes Hairdressing

45a York Place, 0131 558 1010
Branches across the city offer the best student discount, 40% off your first visit, restrictions on appointment times apply, ask when booking.

Craig Davidson Hair

200 Bruntsfield Place, 0131 228 2488
This award-winning salon also has a great 20% student discount and reasonable prices on all treatments.

Medusa Hairdressing

26 Bread Street, 0131 622 7277
A popular salon with three branches across the city, they offer a great student discount, 20% off between Monday and Thursday.

Glasgow Hairdressers

Beti Reilly

75 Bath Street, 0141 331 2241
This independent salon has been running for over 13 years and offers beauty treatments such as tanning and waxing as well as hairdressing.

City Barbers

99 West Nile Street, 0141 332 7114
One for the boys, they offer more than a short back and sides in the form of stencilling, designs artistically shaved into the side of your head.

Rainbow Room Academy

64 Howard Street, 0141 221 0400
Students at the Academy are graded from Academy Stylist to Academy Director with prices reflecting their experience.

Saks Hair and Beauty

178 Hope Street, 0141 333 9944
The chain of salons is headed by British Hairdresser of the year 2006, Andrew Barton, call 0141 222 2662 to book your place as a model.

Toni & Guy

96 St Vincent Street, 0141 248 9243
One of the originals, and probably one of the best, Toni & Guy have an excellent training scheme so their hairdressers have the best techniques in cutting and colouring.