If you were counting on a haircut or style ahead of the Katherine Cup this weekend you are all out of luck.
Katherine hairdressers have been booked out for on-the-day appointments and pre-race touch ups for months now.
It is not an uncommon situation for Katherine's few hairdressers to find themselves in.
With just two shopfronts which take bookings in a town of more than 10,000 people the salons are in a constant state of busy.
New on the block, S&M Hair has been booked out for the races since it opened just four months ago.
Samantha Batchler, the owner of the new salon, is no stranger to the hectic race day lead-up.
She previously worked at Visions Hair Design, but ventured out on her own to cater to the escalating demand for cuts, colours and styles.
There was a time in Katherine, not too long ago, hairdressers dotted the main street. The remnants of signs still remain.
But high rents and a dwindling customer base forced some to relocate, and others to shut up shop and re-open as home salons.
Some of these still exist, while others pop-up intermittently, flowing with the transient nature of the town.
It appears Katherine is short of hairdressers, a notion made more telling in the lead up to the biggest social event of the year, the Katherine Cup.
"For the past two weeks we have been booked out with people prepping their hair," Ms Batchler said.
S&M Hair has just six lucrative appointments on race day, and they were all snapped up within weeks of opening earlier this year.
Visions Hair Design is booked out. July Barberz and Deadly Cuts both don't take bookings but are betting on queues over the next couple of days.
"People are having to go to Darwin for last minute colours and cuts.
"We are getting phone calls from people who have called everyone, there are no more bookings until Tuesday."
Samantha will likely be styling sleek barrel curls with a clean finish for the lucky few who have their ducks in a row and made race day bookings before anyone else was even thinking about it.
"Last year was all about messy curls, women wanted a grungy look to go with their floral dresses," she said.
"This year it is all about a classy look, tidy waves rather than messy curls to suit a busy dress."
She is also tipping blush, emerald and red wine colours to be prominent of those vying for a winning title come Saturday's Fashion on the Field.
For race day inspiration, check out all the pictures from last year's Katherine Cup.
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