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OS Staff Picks: Where To Get Your Haircut Downtown

In the beginning of the year, so much is going on that it doesn’t dawn on you until it’s almost too late: at some point, you will probably need to get a haircut in State College.

You don’t want to go just anywhere, though. Maybe you’ve gone to the same hairdresser your entire life. Maybe you’re on a budget. Either way, we’ve got you covered. Five of our writers debated on the best place to get your hair cut in State College.

Sean Gregory – Cuts by Christy

I’ve always been a sucker for a classic mom and pop business. The people that run them and stories they have will forever earn my money and patronage over any neon lit chain store. Such is the case with Cuts by Christy, a quaint one room business tucked away above Rapid Transit Sports. I’ve been frequenting the Allen Street location ever since receiving a tip from a friend freshman year, and shop owner Christy Orso has yet to disappoint.

One barber chair populates the space, offering a perfect view up Allen Street during your stay. And to top it off, Christy retains the type of wonderful conversation that you’d come to expect from a hometown barber shop. $17 will get you a great cut, some great discussions on the hot topics of State College, and a great new friend. Her only request? Follow her on Facebook so you can stay connected once your time in Happy Valley is over. This ones for you, Christy.

Allison Dolusio – Viva Bella Salon

If you’re anything like me, you have an at home go-to hair stylist. So, finding a reputable salon and stylist around campus was a must.

Viva Bella Salon is one of the more upscale salons around campus. Due to this, I figured it would be expensive. However, the prices are reasonable and I have been happy with them every time I have been.

It is located right on College Ave. so it is easy to access regardless of if you live on campus or downtown. Along with haircuts, they have an array of other services. Anything from coloring to styling, their services are broad and well done.

The salon itself is neat and spacious. Every hair cutter I have met has been professional and friendly. So, the next time you need it, Viva Bella Salon is worth checking out.

Kevin Cacela- For Men Only

I’ll tell you one thing – As a man who was spoiled by the excellent craftsmanship in the art of cutting hair at an early age, I know a good Barbershop/Hair Salon when I see one. Throughout my undergraduate career, I struggled to find a shop that will treat your hair as a living, breathing, sentient being with the respect it deserves.

At For Men Only, their slogan exceeded all my expectations. They will *literally* spoil you. $21 may seem pricey for your average bear, but who in their right mind would pass up a shampoo-scalp massage? The staff is well trained and knowledgeable with what you want, and even bounce ideas off you so you don’t walk out looking like The Weeknd. All things considered, you can enjoy your pre-haircut brew at this fine establishment, like a man.”

Sara Civian- Looks State College

I have gone to the same Boston-based hairdresser since my first haircut. I trust that lady with my life. After driving eight hours back home to get my hair done one time, I stepped out of my denial and realized I’d need to find a place in State College. My roommate at the time always had something cool going on with her hair, and she told me to go to Looks.
They quelled my very apparent anxiety almost immediately. The salon is state-of-the-art, and the hairdressers are all talkative and nice. It’s a little pricey, but as my mom always said, you wear your hair on your head every single day, it better look good. If you can afford to spend a little more and/or if you get your hair colored, Looks is a must.

Ethan Kasales – Evolve Studio

Looking for a nice, relaxing environment for your next haircut? Well, I got that in spades when I decided on Evolve Studio — located next to Kung Fu Tea and the Palmerton — a few weeks ago. In nearly a year and a half I had only gotten my hair trimmed once and figured it was time to tame the mane.
I was a little hesitant going into my appointment, as I had grown attached (literally and figuratively) to the golden flow I had been sporting for the past 18 months or so. But I knew it was time to change things up, especially because I was tired of the wind blowing my hair in my face all the time.
I definitely recommend asking for Ellie. She did a great job figuring out what style would work best with my hair, leaving a little more on top than the sides. You can’t go wrong at Evolve.

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About the Author

Sara Civian

Sara Civian is one of Onward State's three ridiculously good looking managing editors, a hockey writer at heart, and an Oxford comma Stan. She's a senior majoring in journalism, minoring in history, and living at Bill Pickle's Tap Room. Her favorite pastimes are telling people she's from Boston, watching the Bruins, and meticulously dissecting the My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy album. She's seen Third Eye Blind live 14 times. If you really hate yourself, you can follow her at @SaraCivian or email her at [email protected]


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