Been on the road for a while before your arrival in Langkawi and feeling the after-affects of dusty trails in Laos or beach swimming in Bali? Although wearing your scruffiness is often a badge of honour for the backpacking explorer, sometimes even the hardiest of travellers needs a haircut. Langkawi’s Kuah offers two salons — they’re about a five-ringgit taxi ride from the ferry building — which are affordable and reputable.
De Cut Salon, located in the vast shop block of the Langkawi Mall on Kuah’s main drag, have been seeing locals, travellers and even salt-laden cruising sailors for more than 19 years — that’s a lot of experience with all types of hair and clientele. This isn’t your “10 ringgit special” salon, so if that’s what you want, save your money and go elsewhere. But if you’d like to upgrade your road-weary look with a clean modern cut, some highlights or colour, then this professional service option is a bargain compared to what you’ll find in big cities elsewhere — finding the same service outside of Langkawi could easily cost you double.
Haircuts start at 35 ringgit and go up to 200 ringgit for highlights, straightening, colour or other more specialised services. They are also well versed in cutting children’s hair. Although usually quite busy, they do take walk-ins, but it’s advisable to call ahead as a courtesy and to avoid a wait. And if you are simply looking to replace a hair product that has run dry, they have a great assortment of high-end hair products that you will not find in the local pharmacy.
Just down the same main road is recently relocated Zero Cut Hair Studio, with perhaps an edgier stylist philosophy. With nearly five years at their previous Pantai Tengah location, they too have expertise in Western hair types and styles thanks to their repeat expat clients. For those ready to embrace something more exciting and hip, they have the resources to create a new you at bargain basement prices.
Easy to locate by the KFC landmark, their shop is nestled a few doors down among a few older shops on the adjacent sidestreet. Their new non-pretentious salon is low-key enough to make even the most non-vain individual feel comfortable about a bit of pampering. Personable as well as inexpensive, they offer ‘beginner’ cuts from as little as 3 ringgit and highlights and cuts for less than 150 ringgit, depending on hair length. They also specialise in rebonding, straightening and perms, and sell hair products imported from Korea and Japan.
Those travelling to and from Langkawi via ferry can easily pop by en route, and although they do take walk in customers, double checking availability with a call can be a time saver.
By Vanessa Workman
Last updated on 27th August, 2014.