Every barber finds themselves following a slightly different route into barbering, and for Tony of Esquire Barbershop, it all started when he saw a programme about hair shows on the TV. He was blown away by the skills of the Constantinou brothers from Cardiff, and watching them style the pompadours and classic cuts he knew that that was what he wanted to do. Although his school didn’t exactly encourage him into the profession, Tony took the initiative and found himself a hairdressing apprenticeship.
The transfer into barbering really started when his boss asked him to stay behind after work and cut his hair! This must have been terrifying, but Tony proved himself to be worthy of the job and started cutting men’s hair in the salon. Since then he’s specialised in the classic Gentleman’s haircut, offering almost anything that his clients could want – but steering clear of the ultra-modern techniques such as patterning. Although Tony tells me that he has nothing against these styles, he is aiming for a certain aesthetic with his shop and likes to see customers leaving his shop representing its values.
As well as his haircuts, Tony offers something which is becoming quite rare: the wet shave. I was especially interested to see him outline his technique, which includes the use of hot towels from the machine for extra comfort, and the finishing touch of a massage with the Oster Massager. Tony suggests shaving with the grain rather than against the grain to reduce irritation for clients who don’t usually get a wet shave.
When it comes to inspiration, Tony likes to follow both up and coming barbers and those who know the ropes, and he cites barbers such as Dale Ted Watkins and Cutthroat Pete as people that he likes to draw inspiration from. Like Cutthroat Pete, he has started to operate on an appointment only basis, which has helped his clients to feel like they are getting personal, private time with his full attention and no need to worry about holding up other customers. For Tony, the biggest moment of satisfaction comes as he lifts the mirror and gets that nod of approval from the client, although he adds that he also gets a lot of enjoyment simply from being part of the friendly and vibrant barbering community.
Tony is one of the British barbers to have jumped on the trend for US clippers, and he tells me that seeing other barbers use them online inspired him to check them out. Before he had a chance to use the Frequency60hz converter he had troubles with the noise and the vibration of the American clippers, but after joining Instagram he discovered that there was a converter out there to help. In Tony’s work, the US clippers have been especially useful for lining up the cuts – so now he rarely has to use a razor to clean up the edges of a cut.
His message is “if you want to get serious about your barbering then get some American clippers”. You simply can’t get the same result with the models that are available in the UK. With the Frequency60hz converter to power them you really can’t go wrong, and they’re a fantastic tool to help you up your barbering game.
Looking to the future, Tony is planning to continue in his work as an educator as it’s something which he finds especially rewarding – passing on knowledge gives him a great sense of fulfillment in his work. He also looks forward to the chance to do more stage and platform work. If you want to keep up to date with all the latest news about barbers like Tony then you can follow me, Larry the Barber Man, on Facebook, Instagram or YouTube. Alternatively, to find out more about the Frequency60hz converter why not email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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