A day in the life of a Barber

We go through a day in the life of Ajay Rai, a humble barber.


Ajay Rai. You might have heard this name before. But no, we are not talking about the UP based politician. But, today, we dive into the daily life of a humble 27 year old barber, Ajay Rai. Ajay works at “Twinkle Hair and Beauty Family Saloon”, with his wife. They handle all the customers; and on busy days they call more barbers as reinforcements.

Ajay and his wife hail from Darjeeling, West Bengal. They have been together for three years and married for one. He came to Bengaluru around 3-4 years back, and used to do simple hairstyles for people back home.  When asked why he chose to come here, he very gratefully thanked his employer, saying “actually I came with a friend. This parlour gave me an opportunity. The man who runs it is a very good person, he is very helpful.He can understand people.”

Mr Rai also recounts the experiences he has had with customers. He says There are stories; some people are very good, the people who think about others. Some are really rude, no? Maybe they are unhappy with what is happening in their personal life. Most people who come here are friendly, but some who come are very fussy.”

Ajay’s salon opens up at 10am; therefore he must keep it clean and get ready for service by then . Weekends and mornings are packed, but afternoons and weekdays don’t bring in a lot of customers. Sometimes, Ajay brings a quick snack or ice cream, for the staff, to keep them energised. It seems like a positive environment to work in.

Ajay does not consider himself to be a master of hairstyles; rather, he likes to keep things simple. Simple volume reducing, undercuts, mushroom cuts and basic dressing. He likes to learn and observe.

When we asked Rai about his future plans, he said that he was going to pursue this career for about 2-3 years here, and after gaining experience, he will go back to his hometown, and  start a salon in his house. “I like to keep it simple; partly because I am not that experienced, and partly because I am minimalistic. My shop won’t be like a salon. Only a pair of scissors and a friend is required.”