Barbers are always learning how to cut your hair.
No matter how little or how often you may have been to them.
They may spot something different with your hair on the third, fourth or even tenth run.
Or they may realise that your hair can do something that they didn’t think it would on the first go.
But whether it's your first visit or your tenth visit, it's important that you and your barber are working together as a team.
After all, your barber is not your enemy, they are there to make you look good.
We’ve been filming haircut videos with some of the best barbers around for the past year now, and we’ve really dug deep in conversation with them about their motivations for doing the job that they do.
And believe us when we say it, the majority of barbers are just as passionate about you looking and feeling good as you are, if not more passionate!
"Gone are the days when you just have to sit in the seat and say a “Number 2 on back & sides, little trim on top” to hurry up and get out of the seat."
How can you help your barber to give you the best haircut possible on the first run?
The most important part of the haircut is the consultation.
But it's also often the most undervalued part.
A proper consultation is designed for you to talk to your barber and tell them as much as you can about you, your hair, and what you want to achieve with it.
You need to give your barber as much information as you possibly can, while at the same time allowing them to have some elements of freedom.
Gone are the days when you just have to sit in the seat and say a “Number 2 on back & sides, little trim on top” to hurry up and get out of the seat.
Of course if that works for you, then do it, but if you're always unhappy with your haircuts then clearly that isn't working so make the most of the consultation and talk to your barber!
If your crown always grows out funny then tell your barber.
If your hair was too short the last time you had it cut then tell your barber.
If you want to grow your hair out then tell your barber.
If you’re afraid that the style you want may not be suited to your job then tell your barber.
If you struggle for 15 minutes trying to style your hair every morning and you only want to take 5 minutes then guess what.. tell your barber.
The more information your barber has about you, your hair and the haircut you want the better.
But at the same time as important as it is to be as precise about what you want, it’s also important to give your barber some creative freedom.
It’s great that you have an exact idea of what you want, but maybe that David Beckham haircut just won’t work with your hair or face shape.
Listen to your barber’s advice, if they say this won’t work but they can do another variation on it then be open and willing to change.
The barber is the expert and they do this every day, so they will have some initial ideas as soon as you sit in the seat on what your hair will or won’t do.
But at the end of the day, it’s your hair!
No matter what your barber says, the final say is with you.
So if you do want to try the newest trend then feel free, but don’t blame your barber if it doesn’t look the way you wanted and they’ve given you that advice beforehand.
"Your barber will still be learning more about your hair every single time you get in their seat."
What can a barber do to make sure you get the best haircut?
The secret for barbers is to go in safer when unsure on how hair will react to something.
That may be softer fades, or not going as high up the head with the clippers initially, or just something as simple as taking even more time than normal with the first run to see how your hair reacts.
By doing this it will help them to judge what your hair will or won’t do.
You wouldn’t want your barber to just go straight in with a harsh cut and realise too late that what they were trying to just doesn’t work with your hair.
It's worth the extra 10 minutes to get a great cut, right?
Of course, if you’re willing to just let your barber be creative and free from the start then I’m sure they’d be more than happy to do so.
But again be ready that this may result in something that you don’t necessarily like, may grow out too quickly or that you can't recreate when styling for yourself at home.
It will likely take your barber, on average, 3-4 times to really get used to your hair, especially for us gents with more difficult and unruly hair.
And even after this, your barber will still be learning more about your hair every single time you get in their seat.
So have some patience with your barber.
If your haircut didn’t come out exactly as you wanted the first time, or it grew out too quick for your liking then go back and tell your barber the next time and see what you can work on together as a team.
And now don't get us wrong, this is no excuse for a terrible haircut!
If it truly is a terrible haircut then you shouldn’t accept it! (unless you asked for something ridiculous and were advised not to).
But you have to have some level of patience, the same way you would in any other job.
Barbers are normally cutting hair every day from 10-7, it’s inevitable that some of their cuts just won’t be as perfect as others at times.
"Communicate with your barber and work together to find YOUR haircut. The haircut that works best for YOU, to suit what YOU want it for."
What should you do now?
I know we all we want to sit in the barber chair and get exactly the same hair as we saw on Instagram.
But almost every single time, it’s just not possible. Unfortunately unless you’re Tom Hardy, it’s going to be almost impossible to get Tom Hardy’s exact haircut.
Head shape, face shape, bumps, moles, the shade of your hair, uneven colouring in the hair, hair type and hair thickness are just some of the long list of differences that have to be considered.
These all have an influence on our haircuts.
And these are the things that make us unique, so why would we want to change that?
Next time you go to get a haircut, communicate with your barber and work together to find YOUR haircut. The haircut that works best for YOU, to suit what YOU want it for.
Give your barber as much information as you possibly can the next time you go in, don't rush the consultation and don’t be afraid to say you don’t know if your barber asks you anything that you’re unsure on.
You should both be helping each other out.
You by telling your barber as much as you can, and your barber by giving you the best advice possible.
The ideal goal for you is to find a regular barber.
Find someone who you can work with regularly to get exactly what you want.
If you get that nailed then you will be well on your way to getting the best haircut for you every time!
1. Use the consultation wisely
- Tell your barber your issues with your hair
- Show your barber a picture of the cut you want or the best cut you've had
- Tell your barber what you do for work or anything else that could influence the haircut you get
- Never rush the consultation to get out of the seat quicker
2. Be patient
- If your barber doesn't get your hair perfect straight away, it may not be the end
- It will take your barber 3-4 tries on average to really get used to what your hair will do
- Never accept a terrible haircut, that's when it may be the end
3. Listen to your barber's advice
- If your barber advises that this won't suit you or your lifestyle then be open to change
- At the end of the day though your decision is final. Just don't blame your barber if it doesn't suit
4. Work as a team
- Your barber is not your enemy, they want you to get the best haircut too
- If your barber is not sure on something then they can work with softer shapes to avoid going in too harsh in areas
- Your aim should be to find a regular barber who you trust
Other Posts You Should Read Now:
Josh G. Review on Regal Gentleman Matte Clay