8 Best Salons for Kids' Haircuts in Manhattan
Getting your kid's hair cut can be hard. Even a harmless trim can turn into an ordeal if you have a little one who squirms and squeals and refuses to sit still. Have you ever seen a stylist try to snip a moving target? Thankfully, NYC's top children's hair salons pull out all the stops to turn haircuts into a fun experience for families, plying young clients with balloons, bubbles, cartoons, toys, funky chairs, and lots of coddling.
Why trust us? As native New Yorkers and over 15 years of experience sharing the best of NYC with kids, our editorial team has tried all of these kid salons and more first hand. Here are our recommendations for the top 8 kid-friendly salons where you can take your tot for (hopefully tear-free) haircuts in Manhattan. plus some tips on how to pick the right hairstyle for your kid and hair cutting tips for kids with anxiety or sensory issues.
Top Children's Hair Salons in Manhattan
Cozy's Cuts for Kids – Upper East Side
1416 Second Avenue at 74th Street
When it comes to kids' haircuts, this local spot has thought of everything. Children get to pick out a movie or video game to watch or play during their trim, and the colorful shop is bursting with toys and other distractions. Cozy's has its own line of hair products and every kid leaves with a balloon and lollipop in hand. Stylists are used to working with squirmy or crying youngsters and can also check for lice and show parents how to do so at home. There are also cute add-ons like a "braid bar" and manicures, and a first haircut package.
Sit behind the wheel for a cut at Doodle Doo's.
Doodle Doo's – West Village and Chelsea
11 Christopher Street between Greenwich Avenue and Waverly Place
10 West 25th Street (inside Appleseeds Chelsea)
Boys and girls can sit behind the wheel of a taxi or boat as they get their hair cut at this children's salon. Stylists have bubbles at the ready to distract unhappy customers. First haircut survivors and their parents are rewarded with a gift bag. There is also a toy shop in case parents want to buy little bribes to keep little ones still.
Get Coiffed – Citywide
If going to a hair salon has been traumatic for your child, you may wish someone could come to you. Well, your wish is granted: Get Coiffed does at-home cuts and specializes in kids. Discounts available for multiple children. The company also caters to children with special needs.
Get a cut or a style at Kidville Salon.
Kidville Salon – Financial District
40 Gold Street near Edens Alley
The members-only kiddie gym franchise also offers cuts to anyone at their Financial District location. The stylists are patient and used to getting their work done even as their customers duck and weave or just sit in their fun-car chairs staring blankly at episodes of Dora or Sesame Street. Kidville members get 15 percent off cuts.
Milk and Cookies Spa – Upper East Side
1196 1st Avenue between 64th and 65th Streets
If your little one isn't a fan of haircuts, a cookie could certainly sweeten the deal. This kids-only salon offers everything from deep conditioning treatments with scented "hair toppings" to "chocolate milk" mani/pedis. There is even a Dessert Lab where spa-goers can create their own treats and the popular Cookie Café offers free fresh-baked cookies and milk.
My Little Sunshine – Chelsea and Tribeca
177 Ninth Avenue between 20th and 21st Streets
145 Hudson Street near Hubert Street
Stylist Denni has been cutting kids' hair since the 90s and continues to do so at both locations of this independently owned children's store. Tots can sit in a bright-red airplane while getting their 'dos. Since she shuttles back and forth between locations, it's best to call and make an appointment.
Sharkey's Cuts For Kids – Upper East Side
1359 Second Avenue at 72nd Street
This national children's salon chain has one outpost on the Upper East Side. In addition to simple cuts, it offers a wide variety of services (extensions, braids, shimmer) as well as a special first haircut package. Children can sit in a Dodge Police Cruiser, Barbie Jeep, Lightning McQueen Race Car, Buzz Light Year Vehicle, Hummer, Frozen Jeep, Fire Engine, or Mini Cooper while watching their favorite cartoons or Netflix.
Supercuts – Citywide
Visit the website for locations
This national chain is aimed at adults but knows how to deal with kids. You can find a Supercuts in just about every neighborhood in Manhattan and beyond. Walk-ins are welcome and (cheaper) children's haircut prices are valid up to age 12.
How to Pick a Cool Hair Style for Boys or Girls
Your stylist should be able to help you pick a hair style that suits your child, but going in prepared can help. Since trendy kids cuts change all the time, you can do a quick Google search to see what's popular now. Letting your child browse through the pictures to select what they like may also help them get excited for their upcoming haircut. Make sure to consider your child's hair type, personality and lifestyle when selecting your child's hairstyle. You can show the image to your stylist who should be able to replicate it.
Tips for Cutting Hair for Kids with Anxiety or Sensory Issues
If your child hates getting their hair cut here are some tips for things that might help make the experience a little bit better.
- Talk to them in advance to prepare them for what to expect.
- Bring a special or new toy along to distract them.
- Let them pick their own hairstyle to get them excited and involved.
- Go to a specialized kids salon. The haircutters there are really experts, have seen it all before and have lots of tricks up their sleeves.
Photos courtesy of the salons/spas
This post was originally published in April 2012; it has been updated for 2019. Katie Nave Freeman contributed additional reporting.