When you are staying in Tokyo, finding the perfect hair salon for you might pose a challenge. A Western friend of mine lived in Tokyo for years, and she said that finding hair dressers was especially difficult, since they were all used to working with thicker Japanese hair. Average Japanese salons would fry her hair. So not only will you need an English-speaking hairdresser, you also may need a hairdresser that can cater to thinner Western manes. Here is a list of our top ten salons for foreigners.
Tokyo Hair Salons : Assort International Hair Salon
According to Assort’s website, they are, “recognized as Tokyo’s #1 English-friendly hair salon with great services with international experience.” They are located in Minato. A standard cut is ¥6,000, and they also do eyebrows, styling, treatments, color, perms, and make up. First time clients can receive a free treatment and a ¥1,000 discount. Reservations can be made on their website.
Nearest Station: 5 minute walk from Gaien-Mae Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
Gold Salon Tokyo
Nearest Station: 4-minute walk from Azabu-Juban Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
Hayato Salon has branches in the USA and the UK, so they have a lot of experience working with thinner hair. Most of the staff is bilingual and have worked in either London or New York. They offer a relaxing environment. Cut prices range from ¥5,000- ¥15,000, depending on the stylist. They also offer straight, wavy, and curly perms, coloring, styling, conditioning treatments, and hair extensions. If you share your new hairstyle to social media, they will even give you a ¥500 discount.
Nearest Station: 6-minute walk from Roppongi Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
Warning: Derek’s Editorial Intervention to Follow!
Have you seen the prices at some of the other places in this article? It’s going to cost you at least 5000 yen to get your hair cut at one of those salons. This is fine if you’re one of those guys with gorgeous locks who is still grinding it out on the dating treadmill. Me? I’m not that guy. I have a sports cut, which requires no maintenance and makes a neat scratching noise when I move my head back and forth on my pillow at night.
That’s why I prefer the QB House. 1080 yen gets you a serviceable cut in 10 minutes or less. Obviously, this is not the place to get fancy–they got a barber chair and a barber and that’s it, friendo. If you’re looking for a shampoo or highlights or whatever, go somewhere else. But if all you want is to keep from having to comb your hair in the morning, this is your spot. Some rudimentary Japanese will be required (“suportsu-cutto“) but you should be able to handle it. And if you can’t? Well, it’ll grow back. Until the day it doesn’t.
QB House barber shops are small businesses, but they’re all over the place. I prefer the one on the Keikyu train platform at Shinagawa Station, but you can find your own here (or have someone find it for you, because the QB House’s only English websites are for Singapore and Hong Kong).
And the “How-to” is even printed on the outside, for your convenience.
And now, back to the fancy places.
Shinka is an originally Australian hair salon with a branch in Roppongi. It serves customers from all around the world, and features happy customer reviews on their website. A regular cut is about ¥6,250 for women and ¥5,750 for men. Shinka also does coloring, perms, airwaves, straightening, hair treatments, highlights, hair styling, eyebrows, and head spas. They will also cut children’s hair for less.
Website (English) ||| Phone: 03-5575-6768
Nearest Station: 8 minute walk from Azabu-Juban Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
Sin Den is a salon that specializes in foreign hair, so no matter what hair you have on your head, Sin Den will accommodate to your needs. Many of their hairdressers are foreign themselves. Located in Shibuya, basic haircut prices range from ¥6,500 to ¥9,500. Discounts are given for children, and special styling is an extra cost. Sin Den also can help you with make-up, bridal packages, hair treatments, hair coloring, and nails.
Website (English) ||| Phone: 03-3405-4409
Nearest Station: 8-minute walk from Gaien-Mae Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
VIP Creative Hair International
Vip Creative Hair International is a foreigner favorite salon, and their website features many positive testimonies from English speaking clients. A haircut for women costs ¥7,000 whilst a men’s haircut is ¥6,000. They will also do styling, color, perms, hair treatments, facial waxing, make up, and eyebrows. You can find detailed directions to the salon on their website.
Website (English) ||| Phone: 03-6408-6132
Nearest Station: 9-minute walk from Hiro-o Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
Although the website’s English may not be perfect, Watanabe Hair is regarded as one of the top hair salons in all of Tokyo. Women’s and men’s standard cuts are both ¥5,500. Prices may vary based on the stylist, and children’s cuts are discounted. Watanabe also can color and perm your hair.
Website (English and Japanese) ||| Phone: 03-3405-1188 ||| Facebook (English and Japanese) ||| Twitter (via Google Translate) ||| Instagram ||| YouTube
Nearest Station: 9-minute walk from Harajuku Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)
WEC Hair is a salon located in Ebisu. The owner has worked in London, New York, and on Hollywood movie sets as a stylist. He also speaks English fluently. A regular cut is ¥5940, with discounts for kids. They also do color, perms, straight perms, hair treatments, hair sets and blows, and head spas. Appointments can be made on the website or by calling the salon number.
Website ||| Phone: 03-6277-4344
Nearest Station: 5-minute walk from Ebisu Station (plan your route at the link and click on the Google Map below for walking directions)