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Hearts & Robots Hair Studio
Hearts & Robots Hair Studio

Austin

Unexpected transformations make for compelling stories, like when Orson Welles turned into a giant planet-eating robot, then voiced one in Transformers. Turning a sculptor's studio into a hair-sculptor's hangout, Hearts & Robots

Tucked into an industrial zone-turned-art complex, H&R's staffed by a collective of cutters with surprisingly varied pasts who've brought the exposed red-brick vaulted-ceilinged space to life via 1960s furniture (sewing machine tables, mirrors, funky refurbished couches), barber chairs incorporating nuts & bolts from bicycle seats, and a giant exterior mural of a woman vacuuming a lawn -- yet another use for the amazing Dirt Devil. Appointments are a must (although they do same-days), and rates vary by stylist; the operation's led by Scarlett, a UCLA art history grad whose "architectural, deconstructed" cuts merge Austin affordability with edgier styles from her LA past, but not her "LA passed", because Lamar Odom has that under control. Shoot it! You're open! Other fixtures include Juan, who's produced a web series titled "Stripperland Diaries" based on his experiences doing hair for local dancers; native Austinite and "bionic hairdresser" Rachel, who's put in work for PBS's ACL series; and Melissa, who worked at salons seven years before picking up a pair of scissors -- presumably sending everyone running, as one does when someone studies you for seven years, then picks up your scissors

Because sharing is good, during cuts they're giving free wine to customers, as well as chocolate -- just be careful not to overindulge, or that planet-eating Unicron-Welles will turn his eyes on you.

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1. Hearts & Robots Hair Studio 1401 Chestnut Ave., Austin, TX 78702

Tucked into an industrial zone-turned-art complex, H&R's staffed by a collective of cutters with surprisingly varied pasts who've brought the exposed red-brick vaulted-ceilinged space to life via 1960s furniture (sewing machine tables, mirrors, funky refurbished couches), barber chairs incorporating nuts & bolts from bicycle seats, and a giant exterior mural of a woman vacuuming a lawn -- yet another use for the amazing Dirt Devil.

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