How To Talk To Your Barber (& Not Look Like A Newb)
What To Say To Your Barber
If you’re new to the barbering experience, you might not know the vernacular to serve your style best. You probably know some of these terms and tips already; here are a few more for your arsenal.
- Bring in a picture - and then listen. Let your barber advise you on how this particular look will either suit your face and hair type, or won’t.
- Know your clipper guard numbers for the sides and back. This is key to consistency.
- Use inches. How many inches do you want off the top? A half inch, ¾ inch? More? A “little off the top” is a crapshoot. Be specific.
- Texture & Layers. Ask for “razored” to make it lay flat and remove bulk or “choppy” to add volume. Layers are another way to increase height.
- Arches. These are the hairlines around your ears. Most men use a “natural arch” versus the “high arch.”
- Sideburns. Do you want them hitting the top, middle, or bottom of your ears?
- Finally...your neck. Block, rounded, or tapered? A tapered neckline helps it grow out cleaner without needing to go back in for a clean up in between cuts.*
If you have these seven categories in mind, you’ll have just the right look every time. Remember, be as specific as you can. The more you can relay your ideal look, the higher chance you’re going to walk away confident. If you don’t know about an area (or three), let your barber know so he can give a recommendation.
*Some shops give neckline clean-ups in between cuts for free. Just ask.
A few barber shop etiquette rules to keep in mind:
- Be on time. It starts off the cut on the right foot. If you’re not, it could create a domino effect for the rest of the barber’s day. If you’re going to be late, at least give a common courtesy and call.
- Stay off your phone. It creates too much movement with your arms and makes it more difficult to complete the cut.
- Don’t be afraid to engage in conversation. Most barbers enjoy it, or they likely wouldn’t be in this profession.
- Tip. The average is similar to restaurants: 15-20%. If you really love your experience, tip 25-30%. Generous tipping is an “in” for possible special treatment next time.
Next month is our favorite. Socially acceptable overeating AND not shaving? It’s more than an excuse to look like unkempt. It’s also a way to remember those who lose their hair during cancer treatment and raise money for research. We’ll have something for you to commemorate the month. Be on the lookout for next week’s email!