Snip, snip — it’s time for a new ‘do! Whether it’s your tot’s first cut or a fresh back-to-school style, he or she will get five-star treatment at these kid-centric salons. They make it fun when the scissors come out. And it’s not all just cool cuts: Spa services, play spaces and birthday parties are also on the menu.
photo: Kidville via Yelp
Come for a cut; stay for play time. The salon at this huge play space/activity center is a bona fide kid-topia of DVDs, games and toys. If you love your experience, become a Kidville member and get 15% off your haircuts. After all the snipping and quaffing your child can show off his or her new look during any of the awesome classes or open play at Kidville. Create, groove, rock out or just spend an action-packed afternoon romping through the huge space.
1030 W. North Ave.
There are four locations of this small local chain, each with a personality of their own. On Clybourn Avenue, you feel like you’re stepping into a jungle. On Southport, it’s all about outer space. In Lombard, you dive under the sea. And in Northbrook, you’re swept to ancient Egypt. Each forgoes the typical barber chair in lieu of seats shaped like cars and animals. Flat-screen TVs show cartoons and movies, while video games keep busy minds occupied. First haircuts get extra-special treatment with the First Cut Package: a saved lock of hair, certificate, DVD recording of the event and bottle of Weep No More shampoo.
Main location located at:
2154 N. Clybourn Ave.
photo: Rock Candy Salon & Spa
Rock Candy Salon & Spa
For a walk on the glam side, visit this family-centered salon that has services for all ages. From styling to haircuts to ear piercing to makeup, there’s something to make every little prince and princess feel pretty. Choose ballet buns and dance ‘dos for the big recital, or settle in for a kids’ pedicure that includes a soak in green slime. The first cut includes a keepsake lock of hair, photo and certificate. Stop in on a Tuesday for half-price kids’ cuts.
4141 N. Lincoln Ave.
Started by a stay-at-home dad that was in a pickle about what to do during Chicago weather extremes, this hotspot solves more than a few problems. It provides a place for kids to romp around (in a large playroom complete with a six-foot-high slide) and keeps them well groomed in an adjacent salon. Kids’ haircuts include 30 minutes of playroom time, either for the haircut client or the bored sibling. An onsite cafe has free Wi-Fi and the caffeine parents need to get through the day.
2315 W. Lawrence Ave.
photo: Kid Snips via Yelp
Started in 1997 by two moms, Kid Snips has expanded to nine Chicago-area locations — still operated by the same two moms. Settle into a train, taxi or police car chair and let the fun begin. Kids pick a movie to watch during their haircut. Older ones aren’t shut out of the game, because there are special services for teens and adults, including hair extensions. First haircuts include a lock of hair, photo and certificate, and every young client walks out with a lollipop and prize from the treasure chest.
1953 N. Clybourn Ave.
North Shore location:
3232 Lake Ave.
Rock Hair Scissors
The hidden gem in Edgebrook makes kids smile from the get-go. You first notice the gorgeous hand-painted animal murals by Chicago artist Trish Page. Then you fall in love with the rest: kids’ seats shaped like cars and trains, two teen seats, TVs with family-friendly shows, and free goldfish crackers and apple juice. Rock Hair Scissors uses its own Utopia tearless shampoo, and you can fill up your own bottle to take home. First haircuts include a keepsake lock and certificate, and every kid gets a lollipop and balloon as parting gifts.
5508 W. Devon Ave.
Pigtails & Crewcuts
With more than 20 nationwide locations and three in Illinois, Pigtails & Crewcuts is a name lots of people know. It was cited as a top franchise by Entrepreneur Magazine for five consecutive years, and Parents magazine named it one of the top chains for kids’ birthday parties. Each location offers about nine signature party packages, which can be customized to fit your needs. Look to the private party rooms for haircuts, dress-up play, and hair and nail services. First haircut packages include a keepsake lock of hair and photo.
2660 Navy Blvd.
Take a seat in a vintage fire truck and enjoy the ride! Anxiety will melt away when kids are in the hands of these hair cutters. First timers get a keepsake box and adorable photo, and returning clients can nab other goodies, like stick-on earrings and glitter tattoos. A B C Cuts does birthday parties, handling everything from catering to goodie bags to specialty cakes.
7 E. First St.
photo: Lilies & Spikes
Lilies & Spikes
Get a fab cut — and a manicure while you wait. The bright colors, awesome stylists and fun atmosphere will put everyone at ease. You’ll keep coming back for the spa services like Mommy & Me mani-pedis. With make up, up-dos and nail services, your “little lily” can enjoy a birthday bash fit for a princess. But that’s not to forget your little dude; birthday parties can be totally rockin’ with temporary tattoos, a faux shave and MAN-i mini manis for mini men.
1105 Chicago Ave.
Jack and Jill
Stylists here take baby steps with timid kiddies, making them feel comfy before putting those scissors to work. The space is bright and inviting, which gets everything off on the right foot. In the front, there’s a kids’ salon; in the back, there’s a party room. Hop into one of four car chairs or go with a big-kids chair. First haircuts are commemorated with a lock of hair, photo and certificate, and every little patron leaves with a lollipop. If you want to throw a bash here, they’ll put together custom party packages or choose one of the existing packages: princess, pop star or tea party.
70 N. Northwest Highway
The fun haircut names (“Mega Monkey,” anyone?) at this suburban haven will make you go animal. So will the TVs with Xbox. While Safari Snips does haircuts, there’s much more to it. Look to the spa room when you want to plan a private parties at which kids get pampered. The Safari Stuffer room has a machine that allows you to create a custom stuffed animal. The private theater has a runway stage for dress-up and “rockstar practice.” Lastly, the Safari Art room is dedicated to ceramics painting. First haircuts include a lock of hair, photo and certificate.
24017 103rd St.
Where does your kiddo go for a haircut? Let us know in the Comments section below.
— Natasha Davis & Jessica Smith