Earlier last week, I got a haircut at Victor Ortega Salon & Spa, Boni Ave. Branch. I have read good things about this place and I’ve seen it when I pass by Boni Ave. It has a big sign that you just can’t miss!
I actually wanted to get a haircut the night before, but upon calling them up, found out that they were already working on their last call, and would not be accepting new customers since it was already past 8pm. I like that they were open late, until 10pm (remembering that info for future sudden urges to get a haircut). My sister had been bugging me and telling me that my hair was too long, and it has been a long time since my last haircut, and that’s why I wanted to get a haircut.
I was actually thinking of getting more things done to my hair – like maybe get some highlights, cellophane or hair spa, but a quick look at the prices had me backing out. They are not that expensive compared to pricier salons, pricing is mid-range, but I color my hair often since I started getting a few white hairs in my 20’s, and I didn’t want to pay a lot of money for something that I would have to color over in a few weeks. Sad. Sad. Sad.
I could probably go for the classic hot oil next time, right after my next at-home color session, since it’s only P300++.
I drove to Victor Ortega after lunch. Parking is available. There’s a guard who can assist. When I entered the salon, I was pleasantly surprised that it was big. I didn’t get to tour the place but there were many “stations” to accommodate A LOT of customers, maybe 20-30, if I had to guess.
The vibe was professional. Please don’t expect uber-fancy salon level ambience, the place only charges P100 for a haircut, after all. The place is clean, well-lit, with lots of windows.
There staff wasn’t loud. You know what I mean. They were professionally going about their work cutting hair, blow drying, etc… No loud laughing, no squealing, no haughty air. No staff went out of their way to condescendingly tell me “Dear, dry ang buhok mo, gusto mo magpa (whatever treatment they are trying to sell)“.
It’s not as exciting as parlors where the staff are loudly discussing so and so starlet’s latest lovelife escapades, but some of us really do not want to listen to such conversations. I’m pretty sure most people do not want the people who service them making kwento to each other while blow drying, cutting their hair, doing their nails or while doing a facial cleaning (yes, this happens a lot at Let’s Face It!).
A lot of the hairstyling staff looked like regular guys. I noticed that right away because when you enter a salon or parlor, you kind of expect to see the staff to be mostly gay. The staff here all wore uniforms, they didn’t have makeup, piercings or cross-dress. Everyone was just busy cutting hair or doing things to hair, and they all seemed to know what they were doing. I didn’t notice anyone making small talk! So refreshing.
The guy who cut my hair asked me what style I wanted. I showed him pictures on my tablet to give him an idea of what I wanted, and we talked about bangs and how long I wanted my hair left. He listened to what I wanted and didn’t try to impose his ideas on me. He got it right away. There was no “dear, dapat ganito ang buhok mo kasi bilog mukha mo” or some shit like that. Once that was done, he started doing his thing and cutting my hair. They didn’t wash my hair first. Nor did he spray water on my hair to get it wet before cutting. Shampooing customer’s hair before a haircut used to be standard but these last few years, it seems it’s not anymore. Is it to lower cost? It doesn’t matter. I always wash my hair again because I don’t trust the cleanliness of the parlor/ salon’s shampooing, anyway. I always feel like they weren’t able to rinse off all the shampoo / conditioner and that there’s still residue on my hair and scalp. And you know that the tools they use have been used on the general public – you wouldn’t even consider using a random hair brush you just found in a public area, right? So why would you want to use a hairbrush that’s been used on countless people you don’t even know? Be better safe than sorry and wash your hair properly when you get home.
My hair cutter guy had a quiet confidence that made me feel like he knew what he was doing, and the way that he cut my hair, how he did the layers, made me feel like he was doing it the proper way – systematically. And he used both regular hair cutting scissors and hair thinning shears. Sometimes you just know when a parlor person doesn’t really know what they’re doing – when they haven’t been properly trained and just cut hair based on their own ideas of how to do it. I was glad it wasn’t like that.
While he was cutting my hair, he was quiet and didn’t attempt to make any small talk. I just hate it when I have to make small talk with hairdressers, cab drivers, etc… because I don’t like lying. They always ask where I work, what I do, where I live, if I’m married, have kids, etc… I’m not paranoid but I am not giving that information to random strangers! No small talk means not having to lie and make up false info about myself – it also means I can freely come back! See, if I lie during small talk, and if I come back to that parlor and they remember me… I would have to perpetuate that lie, IF I can even remember what I said! Sure, I can create one persona just to use for parlor/ salon small talk to keep everything consistent. But omg, isn’t that just too much?
Of course I can just tell them I don’t want to talk – but they are working on my hair. And I really do not like being rude. Also, if they think I’m rude… they could ruin my hair 🙁 So lying it is, then.
So, it’s a very positive thing for Victor Ortega’s salon that the staff don’t try to engage their customers in small talk. This means I’m more likely to return!
After the haircut, my hair was blow-dried. I really like my haircut! He did ask me if I wanted to get a hair spa, but he wasn’t pushy about it when I asked him how long it would take (3-4 hours, yikes! I can’t spare the time).
The whole thing took less than 30 minutes! The price was P100 for a Women’s Haircut and I just gave the guy a tip before I left.
Overall, I’m quite satisfied with my experience at Victor Ortega’s Salon. Since I went in the early afternoon, I didn’t have to wait – someone was available to cut my hair immediately. I was there and back home in less than 45 minutes! This experience and their affordable haircut price makes me think I would actually keep going back there and get a haircut more often.
I wasn’t able to get a picture inside the salon – I didn’t want the the staff to get nervous or suspicious and make a big deal out of anything!
Here’s a list of their services:
Victor Ortega Salon, Boni Ave. Branch:
Hours: 8:00am – 10:00pm
Last call: depends on service, but for haircut, is 8:30pm
Contact Number: 943-0276
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