Getting a Haircut in Egypt

Ready to get your hair cut in Egypt? Mostafa shares some tips.

Hey guys! How you doing? If you are in Egypt for a very long time, there is something you will have to do… tiHla2 تِحْلق get a haircut. With the language barrier, it can be a bit scary to go to the barber’s in a foreign country. I will help you. You just need to know a few key words and phrases so you make sure you get what you want. And don’t worry, you don’t have to talk too much with ilHalā2 الحلاق the barber. Barbers in Egypt love to tell stories about everything; they’re very raghghayīn رغّايين chatty and entertain their clients, so you will come out with a haircut and some interesting stories. So, let’s go ahead and find a barber shop. 

First of all, you should know that the official day off for barbers in Egypt is il2itnēn الاِثْنيْن Monday, so you can’t easily get a haircut on Mondays!  But it’s easy to find a barber shop. You will see Hallā2 حلّاق “barber” written on the front window or above the shop. These are places for men only. (For ladies, you will see kuwafēr كُوافيْر.) When you go in, just say 3āyiz áHla2 min fáDlak عايِز احْلق مِن فضْلك I‘d like a haircut, please. The barber will offer to shave dá2nak دقْنك  your face. Or you can just say la2 shúkran لا شُكْراً no thank you. If you want short hair, you will say 3āyiz á2Sar shá3ri عايِز اقْصر شعْرى, but if you want to just have a little cut off, say 3āyiz shá3ri Twīl عايِز شعْرى طَويل. After you get your haircut, the barber will say to you na3īman نعيماً. You should reply aLLāh yín3im 3alēk الله يِنْعم عليْك . It’s a cultural expression said in this situation. Now you have to pay, and it will cost about 10 to 20 L.E.

There are some popular haircuts in Egypt, such as:

kabūriya كابوريا the crab, which is very short shaved sides and back of your head with the hair on the top left longer.

zīru زيرو zero , which is having all of your hair shaved off nearly á2ra3 اقْرع bald.

I hope you get a nice, clean haircut and enjoy your visit to an Egyptian barber!

Responses

  1. Hi good afternoon. I love this article I would like to know if it will possible you let me to do a translation in Spanish of it in order to Latin American people can know more about arab culture

    1. Hi Marvin! That’s a great idea to translate the articles into Spanish (and other languages). I’ll give it some thought. Thanks for the suggestion/request!

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