Dear Barber Shop Patron,
As a master barber, it is my duty to inform you of what your barber may not have the contrition to. This may come as a surprise to you, but we barbers know when we haven’t rendered our best work, thereby giving you a lackluster hair cut. But don’t be offended, you should try to sympathize with the barber artist and put yourself in his or her shoes. It has been my experience in my 18 year professional barber career that I have never intentionally given any client a bad hair cut, however, in my attempts to be self effacing, there have been several times where the client has unknowingly encouraged me to craft a lesser masterpiece.
The number one impediment to a good, consistent hair cut is when you, the client, talk on the phone while your barber is performing his craft. Some of you think that by switching the phone from ear to ear, maneuvering to the opposite side of where the work is being rendered is helpful. Let me be the first to tell you that in the barbers head, you are moving too much. Some barbers take it as a personal affront when you hold lengthy conversations while they are artisiting, much the same way a sculptor would if his subject kept moving, inhibiting his ability to fully capture his vision.
Barbers are sanctum artists, our sanctum is the chair, the back bar, the mirror, and even your body. All of theses have to be communal for the barber artist to create his best work. What I mean by this is that when you’re in the chair, you will notice that a barber may turn the chair often, while looking back and forth a the mirror and placing his body against the back bar to leverage his view of the cut. He may tilt your head in different directions, which makes your body move in the chair. Everything that I have just described are movements, and when your barber maneuvers your head and body, he is reading your body language along with his own, as well as the chairs movement language and all of these things work in one accord for the master barber. Therefore, when you interrupt the cadence, his rhythm you are compromising the art. Aside from the fact that you are constantly moving your entire head while you talk on the phone, when you hold a phone up to your head with your hand, it inhibits your neck mobility which is crucial to getting a good and consistent hair cut.
The number two impediment to getting a good consistent hair cut is coming in with greasy or oily hair. Some of you may be saying, “I don’t even put grease in my hair.” However, you should know that if you are black, and you haven’t washed your hair in three days by the time you see your barber, your hair is oily on account of your natural scalp oil that accumulating on you hair. When the hair is dry your cut may be immaculate, but when it is oily, all definition is lost because your hair is no longer malleable, or responsive to the comb or the clippers. Oily hair sticks to itself, the scalp and to the comb, which is the opposite of how you want it to respond when getting cut.
The reason a master barber combs your hair so frequently while cutting is to direct it the direction he feels it should go while simultaneously breaking down the hydrogen bonds in each strand, allowing the hair strand to reform in the direction in which it is combed, making for a seamless cut or blend. This only works when the hair is dry. Oil in the hair prevents the hydrogen bonds from being broken, thus the cut is unmanageable. The cut might seem crisp when you leave the chair, but when you wash your hair, it may look like a totally different blend or a bad fade.
The number three impediment to a getting a good consistent hair cut is when you dye your hair before you get it cut. You may not realize this, but dye is thick and makes your hair act much like it would if it were greasy or oily. It can be gunky, especially if you haven’t washed your hair in a couple of days after dying it, of perhaps you didn’t wash it out well enough because you want that extra black look. You should either dye your hair after you get it cut, or have your barber dye it so that he can wash it to the extent that the hair is debris free and can be cut crisply. Your hair cut is major part of your reputation, and a good reputation means good relationships and opportunities. Keep these hints in mind so that your reputation can be flawless.
Master Barber at The Loft La Brea Elite Men’s Grooming
351 S La Brea Los Angeles 90036