Many schools and hospitals may struggle to stay open in Vladimir Putin’s Russia, but churches and all things religious are booming, and now the Orthodox Cossacks’ Society of St Petersburg has opened a hairdressers to cater for believers who reject modern western subcultural cuts.
Clients will not be getting the traditional cossack short back and sides via the razor edge of a cavalry sabre, but they can choose from a range of traditional styles.
“We, as the Russian people, the great Russian people, should strive for our own tendencies in fashion and not only in haircuts, but also in clothes, in music, in culture and in cinema,” said the Cossack-uniformed salon manager Andrei Poliakov.
Some customers joke that their distinctive barnets disappear under the traditional kubanka hats anyway. Cossacks and seniors get special discounts, and the city also now boasts a cossack taxi service and a cossack college.