The road to haircut hell is paved with good questions. Questions like: Is the coronavirus pandemic the Flowbee’s time to shine?
With the majority of the country under some kind of social distancing or stay-at-home order and many non-essential businesses shuttered, goods that are useful to people confined to their homes are selling like hotcakes. That includes toilet paper, weight lifting equipment, the Nintendo Switch, and, apparently, the Flowbee home haircutting device.
Those who watched late-night TV in the late ‘90s may remember an enthusiastic announcer pitching the Flowbee with footage of men getting haircuts that, at that time, were already out of style. The concept is simple: The Flowbee is a set of massive, adjustable trimmers that connect to your vacuum cleaner, thus enabling you to cut your own hair and clean up the mess at the same time. It is not a coincidence that this product is also marketed to dog groomers.
With barbershops shut down, the Flowbee seemed like a reasonable alternative to going at my hair with scissors or normal clippers—especially as it bills itself as the best way to get a medium-length haircut. Evidently, I’m not the only one who thought so. It’s currently sold out on its official website, Walmart, and Amazon. Older models are selling on eBay at considerable markups over its normal price of $98.95 to $139.95, but we managed to find one on Craigslist for 80 bucks. Being in desperate need of a trim, I volunteered to go under the hose.
Flowbee bills itself as a “Precision Home Hair Cutting System.” After using it, I have come to think of it as a terrifying precision home hair disposal system. I cannot say if this is truly the Flowbee’s fault or the result of my own poor comprehension of user manuals, but I can confirm that I have much less hair than before. Watch the video above and you tell me: Should I have gone with dog shears instead?