Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Getting Naked (Jimjilbangs) and Haircuts


So Shelley and I decided to check out a jimjilbang a few weeks ago. For all of you who don't know, jimjilbangs are Korea's version of a bathhouse. Here you can find saunas, showers, hot tubs, sleeping rooms, tvs, food and drinks, etc. Basically all of the fixings from home, but better and at a very low price (I think we paid around 4,000 won). The jimjilbangs are unisex because everyone is... wait for it.......... butt naked. Now, I have no problem with nudity, but I am not completely comfortable with being nude in front of dozens of strangers either.  Shelley's friend was also supposed to join us but decided to not go at the last minute. Therefore, we were left to figure out how a jimjilbang worked on our own. After paying, we were shown to the ladies area of the jimjilbang. We checked out the area to  figure out what we were supposed to do, grabbed some lockers, and stripped down. I was a little uncomfortable at first, especially when the old women decided to stare for minutes on end. Women were just walking around as if it was the most normal thing in the world. But as the minutes went by, I felt just as comfortable as these other women looked. There were large hot tubs (which I believe were infused with different herbs) that varied in temperature and had different kinds of jets. There was a wet and dry sauna, showers, and a large area where people were scrubbing themselves down. I think that jimjilbangs are things that everyone must try at least once. I am definitely planning on going back again, which is the consensus I've heard from my friends.

Korean Haircut 

I got my hair cut a few weeks ago as well. I was a little sketched out about getting my hair cut due to the whole language barrier. Getting a haircut can be stressful enough when the person actually speaks your language. Fortunately, Shelley knows the owner of one of the most famous salons in Daegu, Seok, and she had also gotten her own hair cut there a few weeks before. The woman who cut my hair knew enough English to understand "layers," "trim," and all of that good stuff. I also brought in a picture of some bangs that I wanted... they turned out more like Korean style bangs, but they still look ok. She pretty much implied my hair had a lot of damage and asked if she could cut it off. Sounded good to me, so off went a lot of my hair. So, to get my hair washed and trimmed it was only 15,000 won (about $13!). Even the worst haircut of your life would cost you more than that back in the states!...And my coteachers said that 15,000 won was WAY too expensive for a haircut here. I think not. My hair feels incredibly healthy and I like the cut. All in all I would definitely recommend going to Seok (www.seok-hair.co.kr). There are salons all over Daegu!


Vince said...

Hi, im wondering if you could tell me which jjb you went to in your post?

If u can email me the info. I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks.


Caitlin said...

Ok, so this may be of very little help to you because I don't remember the name OR exact location OR anything around it... but here goes (I'll email you and respond here just in case anyone else wants to know)

Go to Banwoldang subway station (downtown) and exit 18. Go straight. On the right there should be an entrance and right around the first corner there should be an entrance. The sign is white and green with leaves or something nature-ish on it. Hope that at least somewhat helps! Oh,.. and if you go into the first entrance, then you will have to walk a little while, through an underground parking lot, to get there.

Leave better directions if you actually end up making it!