We all know those barbershops on our local high street, right?
The one's that are £5 for a haircut and have a queue coming out of the door on a Saturday morning.
And then there's the barbershops in places like the West End of London that you feel like you need to take a loan out to get your hair cut.
But surely it's just a haircut, how can there be such a difference in price?
What's the difference?
Please note - I am speaking from a general perspective. This does not apply to every single barbershop out there by any means!
The most important part of a great haircut is the consultation.
It's important that both you and your barber are on the same wavelength and your barber understands as much as they possibly can about how you like your hair.
Cheaper barbershops are often walk in only, which means that you don't have a booked in specific time slot.
This can lead to consultation times being dropped significantly or even not being included at all, especially when there's a queue.
If you sit in the seat and just say a number 2 on back & sides, little trim on top then you're not really giving your barber enough information to get you the perfect haircut (unless you've been with them time and again and they understand what you want).
Well first of all you'll often find that the time you get in the seat becomes a lot more generous once you go for something a tad more expensive.
Normally you'll get between 30 minutes to an hour in the seat, which means a thorough consultation and a more tailored haircut.
If your barber only takes walk ins without turning anyone away and is rushed with a queue then it's likely that the haircut won't be as tailored.
It's worth spending the extra if your barber takes care and attention with your hair to give you your haircut.
There's always a chance too that if you were to pay extra for a haircut that extra time and attention may mean you only need a haircut every 4-6 weeks, whereas with your haircut you might need one every 2 weeks.
Now we get onto what people may perceive as the main reason for the difference in price.
But in fact there's nothing to say that a barber in a £100 barbershop will give you a better haircut than a barber in a £5 barbershop.
Especially as what is the better haircut is all open to interpretation by you.
Maybe a £5 haircut is all you can afford and for the price you pay you're happy with the cut.
Or you may just find an absolute gem that charges less but is an amazing barber!
It's the same as anything, there will be barbers who are great for you at £5 or £100 and barbers that aren't great at £5 or £100.
Price doesn't determine a great haircut so never think this.
The only thing that really changes is the expectation level. If you were to pay £5 for a haircut and get an average one then you're probably not as disappointed but if you were to pay £100 for an average haircut then you're probably a lot more angry.
But, as above, if the barber has more time then it's likely that they'll be able to give you a proper consultation and spend more time on your hair meaning that the quality of the haircut should be better for you.
Just like the quality of a haircut, service is open to interpretation too.
Maybe you want your barber to remember your name and have a chat about your holidays or maybe you want a full luxury service where a receptionist takes your coat as you walk in, gets you a whiskey and you get a hot towel and massage when you're done.
Normally as you go up in price the service gets more luxury.
And this isn't for everybody, some of us just want to go in get a trim and go home, we don't need all the added extras.
There's no right or wrong, it's just the vibe of the barbershop that you personally want.
But of course with these added extras and time comes an extra cost.
The final huge factor in price is location.
If your barbershop is next to a major tube station or a famous landmark then it's likely going to be more expensive unfortunately.
The more convenient or central the location is the more expensive the haircut is likely to be.
That's just business, so if you can afford the time to travel half hour out of your way for a haircut then it may be worth doing if saving money is more important for you!
But if time is your biggest asset and you want to only have to pop next door to your office on your lunch then you may just have to settle for paying more for your trim!
Once again, just because a barber is located centrally and is busy it doesn't mean that they're a better barbershop for you than a shop in the middle of the countryside.
1. Never think that just because the price of a barbershop is more expensive that they are automatically a better barber. This is simply not the case.
2. Make sure you're getting a full consultation with your barber and your barber is spending time on your hair. Unless you're happy with what you're getting already then stick with it!
3. Find a barber at your price range. If you can only afford £5 for a haircut every 2 weeks then that's what you'll need to go for, but think about if you could spend £15 and get a haircut every 4 weeks instead.
4. If you're getting a great consultation and a great haircut and it's only £5 then congratulations you're onto a winner! Don't worry about ever changing and keep that barber close.
5. Ultimately the barber that's right for you is the one that works with you to do what you want with your hair. If you have found that then that's the ultimate goal whatever the price.