The binary challenges for non-binary and trans Montanans getting haircuts

Maria Toccafondo-Wisler cuts Shawn Reagor’s hair recently at Gent’s Dapper Cuts barbershop in Helena.

THOM BRIDGE, Independent Record

When you think of a barbershop, you might picture a group of men chatting about recent events as the sound of buzzing razors and the smell of coffee and cologne fill the air. 

When you picture a salon, the image might be a group of women sitting in front of mirrors chatting across the room as their stylists cut, perm, straighten, color and press their hair while bleach and conditioner perfume the air.

What you might not picture is someone in a barbershop or salon having a gender identity crisis because they don’t know whether to select a “women’s” or “men’s” haircut. Throughout history, barbershops and salons and the haircuts offered have been gendered and many are still today.

There is a movement toward androgyny with many barbershops, salons and haircuts catering to both males and females, but how does a person feel in these places if they do not conform to the gender binary of male or female (non-binary) or to their sex

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