When we were kids we would get our hair cut from the local barber.
His name was Fred and if memory serves me he must have been pushing 70 years old at the time.
For a ‘short back and sides and trim on the top’ it would cost the grand total of £1.50 which, even back then, was cheap.
We nicknamed Fred Sweeney Todd after the fictional Victorian murderer of the same vocation who would use his cut-throat razor to slash the necks of his victims.
Fred was a gentle soul but he did have a tendency to cut your hair shorter than you wanted so the nickname, at least in our world, was appropriate.
Fred didn’t own a barber shop but would rent a room every Monday to Saturday at the local community centre where I and most of the other men in our village would get our hair cut.
Over the years, as more professional hairdressers set-up shop, with their cream walls and model headshot pictures hanging from them showing all the latest styles, more of us started having our hair cut there instead.
A wash, blow dry and hair cut by a ‘chief stylist’ seemed to appeal to a changing tide of the nation. Metrosexuality was in and barbers like Fred were on their way out. Thanks, Beckham.
This is the way it’s been over the last 20 years but increasingly we’re seeing a change and a return to the old, thanks to the influx of Turkish barbers in the UK.
My local Turkish barbers (pictured) is always busy no matter which time of the day I go and speaking to the owner he has plans to open up another two in central London.
Why are they becoming so popular? In short, because men are tired of going to female type beauty salons and because the experience is much more fitting for a man.
A man’s hair is different to a woman’s. For starters it’s usually shorter therefore requires less attention and secondly it’s has a more wiry texture to it.
The benefits of going to a Turkish barbers over a traditional hairdressers are:
- They know what they’re doing. They’ve cut thousands of men’s hair like yours so they aren’t going to give you a shitty basin cut
- They won’t make you look like a tit. Hairdressers usually want to try the latest styles out on you so will convince you to go for “something in style”. Don’t do this, chances are you’ll look like
- You don’t have to make an appointment and stick to it. Hairdressers, especially the popular ones, require you to make an appointment in advance but here you just walk in and wait
- You can get a cut-throat shave. No hairdresser does this
- You’ll get your eyebrows trimmed and your ear hair flamed. Let’s face it, men are generally hairier than women so sometimes we need a little fire to singe those thick hairs off
- It’s cheaper. Unless you’re going to some really shit hairdressers chances are you’ll pay less for a better cut at a Turkish barbers. I pay half price to my old hairdressers which allows me to get my hair cut more often
- It’ll make you feel more like a man. Get a man’s hair cut from a man’s barbers