Cutting hair on the wrong day can lead to bad luck and other misfortunes, according to various superstitions and folk beliefs. So what day should you avoid trimming your locks? Here’s a look at some of the supposedly unlucky haircut days according to different cultures and traditions.
In parts of Europe, it’s considered bad luck to cut your hair on Saturdays. One superstition says that anyone who does so will meet with misfortune. Another belief states that cutting hair on Saturdays can stunt its growth. This superstition stems from the association between Saturday and Saturn, a planet that astrologically represents misfortune and limitation.
Tuesday is considered the unluckiest day of the week in the folklore of multiple cultures. In ancient folk astronomy, Tuesday was associated with the influence of Mars, the God of War. This connection to bloodshed and violence made Tuesday an inauspicious day for various activities. Haircutting was included – a Danish proverb states “on Tuesday, no new clothes you should wear”.
This superstition may have arisen from Greek mythology. Some versions say that during the war between the Olympian Gods and the Titans, Zeus’s son Ares (Mars) was nearly killed in battle on a Tuesday. Haircutting on this day was considered offensive to the wounded God. Tuesday’s association with bad luck persists today in modern superstitions.
During Mercury Retrograde
In astrology, Mercury rules communication, travel, contracts and the mind. When it appears to move backward across the sky (retrograde), these matters are believed to go awry. Mercury retrogrades occur 3-4 times a year for about 3 weeks. Many advise against getting haircuts during Mercury retrograde because miscommunications can lead to botched hairstyles.
However, others say the caution about getting haircuts is overblown. Mercury retrograde mainly exacerbates existing problems. If you get your hair cut by a stylist you trust at a familiar salon, things should go smoothly during these periods.
While some consider Sunday the best day for a haircut, others avoid haircutting on the Christian Sabbath out of respect for its solemnity. Russian superstition considers it a sin to cut your hair on Sunday. Ancient times viewed Sunday as the day evil had power. Since cutting hair was risky, it was best avoided on the Lord’s day.
During the early 20th century, barber shops in Christian nations would often be closed Sundays due to religious blue laws. The long Christian tradition of Sunday observance lent credence to superstitions about ill fortune from haircutting on the holy day. However, strict prohibitions on Sunday haircuts have faded over time.
Friday is another day surrounded by superstitions. As the day when Jesus Christ was crucified, it’s associated with sorrow and misfortune in many legends. There are various Good Friday taboos related to haircutting and shaving. Additionally, since Friday represents Venus and love, haircuts may get botched due to the influence of beauty and vanity.
However, partner charity Hairdressers Journal International debunks myths about Friday the 13th being an inauspicious haircut day. Most Friday superstitions stem from religious taboos and outdated notions rather than evidence of genuine bad luck. Many modern professionals see no issues with booking hair appointments on Fridays.
Chinese Lunar Calendar Taboos
For centuries, Chinese almanacs have dictated auspicious and inauspicious days for activities like weddings, funerals, travel and haircutting. Cutting hair on taboo days marked by the lunar calendar can bring bad luck. However, views vary on harmful consequences – some warn of possible accidents, while others only advise caution to ensure a smooth haircutting experience.
One lunar haircutting taboo is the Ghost Festival month. The 15th day of the 7th lunar month is when ghosts and spirits are believed to roam the earth. Haircuts during this time may invite possession or attack from malicious entities. Monthly taboo days like Grave Sweeping Day (Qingming Festival) are also sometimes included.
Examples of Chinese lunar haircutting taboos
|Taboo day||2023 Date|
|Lunar New Year’s Eve||January 21|
|Qingming Festival||April 4|
|Dragon Boat Festival||June 22|
|Mid-Autumn Festival||September 29|
Hindu and Buddhist Holidays
Devout followers of religions like Hinduism and Buddhism refrain from haircutting on holy days and festivals. Important Hindu haircut abstinence days include:
- Krishna Janmashtami – Krishna’s Birthday
- Mahalaya Amavasya – Pitru Paksha ghost festival finale
- Deepavali – Festival of Lights
Cutting hair on significant Buddhist days such as Losar (Tibetan New Year), Vesak (Buddha’s birthday) or Bodhi Day can also be considered disrespectful. However, views on haircut restrictions vary across cultures and traditions.
Full Moon and New Moon Days
Folk wisdom cautions against cutting your hair on the full moon. Some believe the moon’s magnetism during this phase causes extra bleeding and delayed healing. Others say the full moon’s bright light makes precision haircutting more difficult.
Haircuts on new moon days are also ill-advised in many cultures. The new moon represents beginnings, so it’s considered bad luck to cut hair at the start of a lunar cycle. Darkness during the new moon may hinder haircut accuracy as well. However, scientific evidence for lunar haircutting taboos is scant.
Getting a haircut right before or during special events is deemed unwise in various superstitions. Important occasions where you shouldn’t trim your locks include:
- Day before wedding – Bad luck for the bride, groom or both
- Day before photo shoot or event – Hair may look off in photos
- During honeymoon – Cursed marriage
- Before job interview – Lower perceived professionalism
However, many now ignore these fears in favor of well-groomed hair for big occasions. Some suggest avoiding drastic style changes prior to important events as a sensible precaution.
While various cultural taboos suggest days to avoid haircutting, few are based on evidence of genuine misfortune. Superstitions around unlucky haircut dates often stem from ancient religious beliefs, astrological lore or unfounded notions. However, those who follow traditions rooted in these customs may still adhere to prohibitions on trimming hair on certain days.
In modern times, many disregard folk superstitions for the convenience of professional hair care any day of the week. But taboos surrounding Sabbath days, festivals, lunar phases and special events persist for the spiritually inclined. If you’re unsure of auspicious haircut dates, consult your horoscope or a qualified astrologer – or just use your best judgment based on your personal beliefs.