Business feature: Hairdresser stays a cut above

By Mickey Winfield: PNT staff writer

Judy Hallford, a hairdresser in Portales, recently observed the 30th anniversary of her business.

Hallford grew up in Floyd and graduated from beauty school in Portales in 1970, before opening “Judy’s Swirl and Curl” in Portales in 1978.

On becoming a hair dresser: I did people’s hair off and on all the time, so I thought, ‘Well, I might as well get paid for it.’ People like the way I do their hair. You’ve got to like working with people. You’ve got to like to keep up with the styles. You’re kind of like a psychiatrist to the ladies.”

On her customers: You get so close to your customers. Some of them get to be like mothers, and they’ll take care of you.

Some of my customers have come to me for as long as I’ve been a hairdresser. And they’re just like family. Whenever anything happens to their family, you feel like it’s your family. It’s been real good. I’ve made a good living.

On doing friends’ and relatives’ hair outside of the shop: That does get annoying. If you don’t have your scissors, you end up cutting with some strange scissors. I’ve cut hair with pinking shears (fabric scissors) before. My cousin was desperate for a hair cut. I’ll never do that again.

Shop talk: We talk about people’s health and people’s troubles.

“This is one business that you don’t repeat what you hear. If we told everything we knew, it would be bad.”

On her location on South Avenue D: I really like where I’m at because you get people who are traveling through. They’ll see the sign and stop. You have your standing (customers) every week. And then you get your walk-ins.

On eventually retiring: I will probably be a hairdresser until I couldn’t stand up because the economy is in a difficult situation and I’m sure Social Security will come through for me. I would miss the work when I retire because I won’t see the people.

“You’ll see them when you go to the stores and stuff like that, but you don’t see them constantly. It doesn’t seem like it’s been 30 years.”