Chinese Hairstylist ‘Paints’ with Scraps of Hair

A portrait of Marilyn Monroe “painted” by Hailiang Li with human hair. (Photo: Getty Images)

We’ve always known that our hairstylists were artists, but 35-year-old Chinese barber Hailiang Li of Henan Province takes it to a whole new level. He uses scraps of human hair from work — usually discarded at the end of the day — to make detailed “sketches” of subjects ranging from Marilyn Monroe to a giant spindly spider to a 3-D building.

Hairdresser Hailiang Li working on a portrait of Marilyn Monroe. (Photo: Getty Images)

He got his inspiration from sand painting, and he likes the dust-like tiny scrap of hair from his male clients, which he sprinkles like sand on his canvas. None of the work is permanent and can easily be blown — or sneezed — away.

Hairstylist Hailiang Li’s portrait of Baishi Qi, a famous Chinese poet. (Photo: Getty Images)

According to Chinese-language publication, Li does not have any formal artistic training in spite of his childhood fondness for traditional Chinese painting, though people on Weibo (China’s version of Twitter) are saying that he must be an excellent haircutter considering his attention to detail and form. If he can play with light, shadows, and line with scraps of hair, imagine what he can do with the entire head.


Tackling Public Health, Self-Image, & Girl Power in One Art Project

100 Years of Beauty in China [Video]

‘China Rich Girlfriend’: The Novel that Explains Billionaire Asian Grooming Practices