Ah, the first haircut. A milestone both looked forward to and, often, feared, by parents. It represents some of the first steps of your baby, well, not being a baby anymore. It’s something that inevitably has to be completed or else, sooner or later, your little one is going to have a hard time seeing or becoming a walking tripping hazard.
When it comes to the first haircut, you can go a variety of routes. You can go the DIY method. While cost-effective, it might result in a hack job that makes others wondering if your little one got ahold of the scissors.
You can go to a local hair salon or barber shop, maybe even stopping by one that specializes in children. This will often result in an adequate haircut, but most likely it will be lacking something.
That something is usually, 9 out of 10 times, pixie dust. There’s only one place to get a baby’s first haircut and be confident that you are going to get some much desired pixie dust.
Enter the Harmony Barber Shop on Main Street USA in Walt Disney World.
The Harmony Barber Shop calls the Magic Kingdom home. Located just to the left once you step foot on Main Street USA, right next to the fire station. Licensed barbers and hairdressers are available to cut the hair of little ones all the way up to those young at heart (or older ones).
First haircut celebrations and everyday trims are both services provided at the barber shop. The Harmony Barber Shop typically operates from 9 am-5 pm and walk-ins are accepted, but appointments are encouraged and definitely can make your visit run smoother.
We love the Harmony Barber Shop and cherish how it created a memorable experience for our both boy’s first haircuts. Being a smaller service option at the Magic Kingdom, not many people are familiar with the Harmony Barber Shop. It can be very easy to miss. It wasn’t until I had kids of my own that I realized it was a fully functioning barber shop. I thought it was just another shop facade designed to make you feel like you were in a small town USA. Through my visits I have learned a few things regarding the Barber shop, so here are a few tips to help your little one’s experience run smoothly.
1. Make an Appointment
We have utilized the Harmony Barber Shop three times over the course of three years, twice for my older son and one for my little guy. (I’m now realizing, dang, these boys have quick-growing hair!). We always have an appointment for each visit which translated into never waiting more than a few minutes.
While walk-ins are accepted, as mentioned above, we have overheard guests being asked to return much later in the day for same day scheduled appointment times. We really appreciated having a specific time scheduled as it helped us plan other aspects of our day at the Magic Kingdom.
Our favorite time to schedule an appointment is right when the Harmony Barber Shop opens. Making sure to get the haircut done before our kiddos experienced sensory overload from all the sights and sounds of the Magic Kingdom was a sanity saver.
If you care about a specific time, be sure to make an appointment.
2. Crazy Kid
Let’s say you’ve planned the appointment so it is perfectly timed with your little one’s morning or afternoon nap. You front loaded your kid with snacks and drinks. You make sure their diaper is changed and their clothing is comfortable. Nothing can possibly make your kid crabby and you’re looking forward to the perfect first haircut experience.Many of you are already laughing as you know that it doesn’t matter what you do to prep your little one, his or her haircut experience can be a crap shoot. The barbers at the Harmony Barber Shop do their best to ensure your little one has a great time, so don’t fret too much about whether or not your little one is going to be a perfect angel.
The barbers will work hard to distract from the actual haircut that is happening by covering your little with Mickey stickers and giving them fun toys to keep their little hands busy. Your kid might be distracted by these things or he or she might not. I’ve had one little boy who was head over heels in love with being covered with stickers and a light up Buzz Lightyear (Which we did end up purchasing after the haircut. I see what you did there, Disney. Smooth move.)
I’ve also had one little boy who would not sit still, no matter the number of Mickeys covering his little body. He was so wiggly, I held him to have his haircut completed. Don’t stress it. There are workarounds for almost every situation and your little one’s hair will get cut.
3. Certificate and Lock of Hair
If you opt to have your baby’s first haircut at the Harmony Barber Shop, at the end of the experience you will receive a certificate and a lock of your baby’s hair (in a small muslin bag). The certificate is super cute and makes a nice little memento of the experience. It is, however, made of paper. Paper doesn’t tend to hold up well in a stroller all day at the Magic Kingdom, nor does it travel well in carry-on or checked luggage. I know I am full of facts that you most likely couldn’t find out on your own. But, wait, there is a point to me pointing out these obvious details.
If you plan to preserve your certificate, you’re going to want to start the preservation process as soon as you receive the certificate. We’ve found that a simple folder, a sturdy one made of plastic, usually does the trick to help prevent any unwanted creases in the certificate. For each of our ‘First Haircut’ appointments, our barber attached my baby’s lock of hair to the back of the certificate with a few Mickey Mouse stickers. We found this helpful in order to keep tabs on the lock of hair and to prevent baby hair from getting all over our other Mickey shaped souvenirs.
Especially the Rice Krispie ones…
4. Mickey Ears
Receiving a pair of Mickey ears was definitely my favorite part of the first haircut experience. I mean, my boy’s favorite part, because the haircut is for them, not me! (Yah right, it’s totally for me).
Each boy received a set of Mickey ears embroidered with the words ‘My First Haircut’ on the back. At the time of our appointments, the first haircut packages cost $25 each.
This included the haircut and the Mickey ears. When you calculate an average set of Mickey ears costs about $20-$30, the first haircut package is definitely a steal. You basically get two firsts out of this event: first haircut and first Mickey ears.
5. Pixie Dust
Let’s say you don’t need to first haircut package, but you just want to have a special haircut. You thought about doing Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or the Pirate League, but opted to do something a little simpler. Following your little one’s first haircut, you can request a little pixie dust sprinkled on his or her head.
Pixie dust of this variety comes in the form of glitter and gel, making it very sparkly and magical. For our oldest son he received pixie dust without us asking, but for our youngest we realized later in the day that he didn’t get any. Be sure to ask if you want a little extra glitter in your little one’s life.
6. Best Photo Opportunity
Your little one is all trimmed up and looking pretty spiffy. Tears may have been shed, but hopefully they have been replaced with smiles once your little one sees him or herself in the mirror. You’re going to want to whip out your camera for this moment. The best photo opportunity to get will come from behind your little one while they look into a mirror in front of them.
Be sure to capture their expression as they check out their new doo. During our oldest kid’s first haircut a citizen of Main Street USA happened to walk into the Harmony Barber Shop. After asking permission, she donned our little man with his first set of Mickey ears!
7. Monetary Tips
At the Harmony Barber Shop you are able to pay for your haircut services by Magic Band, but you are unable to pay your tip this way. Be sure to have cash on you if you want to tip your barber for their amazing service
. Honestly, these men and women should probably get a extra tip for somehow trimming the hair of some extra wiggly kiddos. …speaking from experience here with my littlest man who would NOT sit still.
We loved each of our experiences at the Harmony Barber Shop and highly recommend them for a first (and second) haircut experience. During our last visit we wrestled with if we should be taking the time out of our day to complete the haircut.
Was it really worth it to be spending precious Magic Kingdom hours in the Harmony Barber Shop? Looking back over the three haircuts, we’ve come to realize they have been some of the most precious memories we have made on our recent Walt Disney World trips. We wouldn’t trade the experiences for the world. And, honestly, the haircut itself doesn’t take much time, maybe 20-30 minutes tops. The barbers are good at what they do!