People have only been in quarantine for less than two months, and they are already getting heebie-jeebies and have no peace. People grow hair and cuticles, they mix up the days of the week, have day/night confusion, and forget to sleep. In other words, people run wild in quarantine.
This is no empty talk: right now, I, Martin Scotch, am not talking about an abstract remote worker, I am talking about myself. I am a specific representative of the biological species who, while being locked up, is rapidly losing his human appearance. During self-isolation, I turned out to be helpless in terms of everyday problems. How to get a haircut if all the barbershops are closed? What to eat so that I do not want to lie on the couch all the time and gain weight? What are nail files for? To put it briefly, how to stay smart and handsome during the lockdown?
The Internet is replete with videos of good-looking bloggers telling us about beauty and muscular strength. I suggest that we focus on the latest online instructions made by people spending time in self-isolation who created their tutorials for those running wild in quarantine, like you and me.
Standing in front of a mirror during quarantine is a major challenge. Having decided to do my haircut, I started with searching by keywords on YouTube: quarantine, self-isolation, handy tips, etc. I found some good pieces of general advice on the channel of the University of California in San Diego.
Before growing as a personality, shaving, and getting a haircut, these guys advise you to pull yourself together and calm down in the first place. To do this, put your smartphone in a box for 30 minutes, don’t turn on the TV, and just spend some time alone. Then call your friends or parents, then take a deep breath, exhale, and proceed to the beauty procedures. I did everything according to the instructions and began searching for a right and clear hairdressing instruction.
I decided to begin with an excellent course.
This video goes on for 30 minutes and tells about how to properly hold the scissors because this is claimed to be the basics and the key to a successful haircut. The guru’s pretty convincing: “Wrist should always be very relaxed, and don't stretch it. Relax the wrist and apply scissors gently and hold them tightly. Keep same shape of the wrist. Then bring the scissors to you, also, your little finger has to hold them very firm, otherwise, scissors will never stay hold still.”
Despite all the absurdity of the situation, after watching how to hold the scissors properly for 30 minutes, the hairdresser’s instructions firmly settled in my brain. Firstly, it’s only the thumb that is below should move because it opens the scissors (by the way, they need to be opened as wide as possible). Secondly, the scissors themselves must be held parallel to the collarbone or mouth. Otherwise, the client may stab you. Or you can accidentally stab yourself, for example, from laughter.
To quickly get used to the fact that you are Scissorhands now, you need to practice regularly. It turns out, the most effective way to do this is to cut long newspaper ribbons and then cut them into small transverse strips, holding ribbons vertically in front of you. If the position of your hands is correct, the strips bounce off the scissors. It’s an entertaining way, but where can I get newspapers amid the quarantine? And after all, all I want is to get a haircut and not play Freddy Krueger.
Next, I went on to watch the instructions of a Canadian hairdresser. He is trying to explain how to shave sideburns with an electric razor.
I liked the idea of drawing out straight guidelines on the skin with a white pencil (any cosmetic pencil will do) and then “tracing” them with a trimmer like in a coloring book.
I have already grabbed the trimmer, but the truth, as usual, came from the East. A young Asian man in a respirator turned out to be the best teacher. It’s not an ordinary online lesson, it’s a whole philosophy lesson.
“Step 1 is to wet your hair fully. This is gonna help make your hair much easier to cut,” a young man named Jensen Tung taught me. “Step 2 is to observe your hairstyle. See what you’ve got to work with, what foundation you have. Step 3: fade your sides. If you have any hair clips, this is the perfect time to use them to separate that longer hair that you probably have at the top of your head with the shorter hair on the sides. Fading your sides is a really simple process. How you wanna look at it is in terms of layers. Imagine that there are layers that create the side of your head from the bottom to the top of your forehead. And within each layer is a different clipper size that you are going to be cutting it at.”
The young man reassured his audience and asked not to be afraid of scissors. It turns out that the eastern principle of holding scissors is different from the western one. Plucking his bangs, Jensen Tung was holding the scissors with their ends up almost vertically. At the same time, he stated that this way, the haircut ends up being more natural and cooler. Just make sure you don’t rush and enjoy the process.
I liked this oriental hairdressing samurai so much that I was just about to get a pair of scissors. But then I accidentally came across this short video.
The legendary groomer-hairdresser Jonathan Van Ness shared his thoughts on cutting hair in self-isolation.
“Just do not do it!” he assured, sitting relaxed on a sunlit veranda. “The average human head grows between a quarter of an inch and a half an inch of hair a month. So, worst-case scenario, this is going to get you, like, what, two inches? Three inches of hair? It’s, like, try a new look. Maybe you need a shag. Maybe you need a little bit of length. Yeah, save your haircuts. Because what you don’t want to do is mess up your hair so bad that you’re still growing that thing out after the quarantine.”
And I totally agree with him.
In this sphere, mankind has clearly succeeded more than in cutting hair themselves. Searching by keywords, I quickly and easily found two worthy videos shot at home.
Here’s the one where a dude is cutting his hair and beard with an ordinary trimmer, and he does it so carefully and beautifully that it hurts.
But I liked this one better, there’s less self-admiration in it and more useful details.
There are not so many things about this topic. I really liked the master class on easy at-home manicures for men and women by a perky Chicago lady.
“We know we’re stuck in a house, and when all this is said and done, we’re probably gonna look like hairy bears with long claws,” said the lady, encouraging us to do something. To combat overgrown cuticles, we need simple tools: a bowl with warm soapy water, nippers, and a wooden cuticle stick.
With a pedicure, things are no better. Surprisingly, for some reason, the Indians advanced the most in the field of an online pedicure. They move on from words to deeds right away. The video is not beautifully made, but the visual aid is what really matters. For example, here is a home-made video about a first-person pedicure using a toothbrush, accompanied by melodic music.
After all, if you don’t like music, here’s a detailed “army” story about how to take care of your nails on your hands and feet using nippers and a nail file.
Strength and calm
Now that you can be calm about your beauty, you can think of your physical appearance. Of course, there are a lot of apps that help to keep fit, but I decided to find a workout suitable for doing in quarantine conditions so that everything was clear and obvious and without additional equipment.
Your breathing gets heavy after the first few exercises, but it’s a good thing. As scientists from San Diego advise, call your parents, and then start over.
If you prefer the peace of mind over physical strength, here’s an excellent quarantine yoga course.
In this video, a person is taking inhuman poses for 40 minutes in the sunlight. And next to him, there’s a huge shaggy dog. I prefer the dog’s yoga, but this course is quite alright.