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Barber Interview: Daimon Johnson Of Cut Throat London Talk Barbering…

Today, I get the chance to speak to Daimon Johnson of Cut Throat London in Peckham. Cut Throat London is a shop that is very minimal, trendy, and slick to a point barber shop that is also mixed gendered. Naturally, I want to get the scoop on Daimon’s journey into barbering and where he plans on heading in the future. We start, of course, at the beginning.

Asked about the beginning of his journey, Daimon explains, “My story is a little bit different. To cut a long story short, I was kind of made homeless up north, and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I fled to my hometown with a bag of clothes, and no idea what to do. I always had an interest in men’s style and fashion, and men’s hair is obviously a part of that. One day, I was in a friend’s barber shop and watched the head barber do a whole haircut: scissor over comb, very Italian, and very particular. I thought it looked like a real skill I could get down with it – it ticked every box in terms of learning a trade for me. I came to London, started training under a couple of guys who then went on to form the London School of Barbering and Gents. That’s it, really. Since then, I’ve been grafting and I’ve loved every minute of it.”

He reveals that it has been about six years ago since he began back in 2010. I ask him if he was academy taught or self-taught to gauge his phenomenal skills. “It wasn’t really an academy at the time,” he tells me. “Like I said, Michael from the London School of Barbering went off and did his own thing, but before that, he taught me in central London. It was at that primordial stage before London really had any academy, and before barbering started becoming a legitimate choice for people as a career. I hit it on the right side.”

 

Asked about what styles he is specializing in at the moment, Daimon reveals that he enjoys being a jack-of-all-trades. “I like to be good at everything. I like to push myself to do stuff that is well out of my comfort zone. I’ve learned a lot more since being in Peckham because we have such a wide demographic of people and styles, as well as people more willing to do unusual things with their hair, which is great. Before here, I tended to lean more towards classic styles: more ‘20s and ‘50s styles. Nowadays, I’m doing a lot of ‘90s stuff, which is quite unusual: severe undercuts, a lot of steps, a lot of curtains, and things like that. We’re quite ‘80s and ‘90s vibes in here just because James and I are kind of stuck in the past.”

I bring up the longer hair in the ‘80s and how it seems to be making a comeback. Daimon agrees with me, “We’re seeing a lot of trends happening, and we’re seeing a lot of longer hair on guys. The beards, I’ve noticed, have been getting smaller and smaller. You’re getting guys with massive lumberjack beards and they’re now going to a nice cropped and tidier aesthetic.”

 

As I brought up earlier, Daimon’s shop has a very minimal and trendy look to it. I ask him about what led to the shop’s aesthetics. “That’s a good question,” he tells me. “There’s one thing I can’t stand, and that’s gimmicks. I don’t like the starch or razor blade motifs. I wanted a space that was really comfortable and would suit everybody. I want every single person who walks in the door to be cared for, and I want them all to feel equally as comfortable.”

 

The subject then turns to the allowance of women in his shop. “We’re quite adamant that a barbershop is a place for a woman. We definitely cater for all genders and walks of life. We don’t want the shop to feel masculine or feminine. We have a mixture of disciplines here. I’m a barber by trade, so I don’t tend to cut long hair at all, but the people that work here are skilled in different areas, so when someone comes in we can pair them up with the best person for the job.” As for the name of the shop, Daimon reveals it is named after the street they are on, which used to be called Cut Throat Lane or Cut Throat Alley for the highwaymen that robbed people in old Peckham.

 

Daimon also has a line of pomades that are his own creation. I ask for the backstory on those and he tells me, “One day, my brother Leo and I went for coffee while I was freelancing and doing business stuff. I remember thinking how easy it would be to create a product, because I felt like there wasn’t really anything out on the market in the UK that catered to what I was looking for our of a hair product. We basically said, “Let’s do it, then”. We went home and got pots and pans out and came up with that first formula with a little help from someone else. We had a few ingredients that we wanted to use that we knew had been used before. We got a nice, unique formula made, got a bunch of jars, had labels made for them – it all happened very quickly. Next thing we knew, there were rave reviews on forums all over the world. It just blew up.” His products also include a cow horn comb, which he demonstrates. They are typically designed from the horn of the cow, and do not cause any friction when running through hair.

I ask him how he went from mixing pomade in pots and pans to his latest discovery, and whether it was done via his Facebook group. Daimon tells me, “It’s just hard work, really, but social media does play a part. We had a couple of really good reviews in America. We had a particular guy called The Pump that is well-known in the states and divides a lot of opinions on products like it. Then, we started a Facebook group called Everything Pomade. It’s got thousands and thousands of followers now – I just can’t believe it. People from all over the world come together and talk about their hair grease. Not that we started it or anything, but people started making their own versions of things from home and they were making these really amazing products that never have the financial backing to make it big.” Considering the regulations and testing required, Daimon admits he was in the right spot.

 

As for education, Daimon has plans for the future. “My partners and I are close to moving down under, and I’d like to perhaps set up some sort of academy or a nice shop where I can do some really nice things. There’s definitely a scope for it. We’ve done great things with this shop, and I really want it to continue on. The thing is, with New Zealand and Australia, I noticed that there’s a lot of good ideas and a lot of good people, but they don’t execute their ideas in the right sort of way. The branding is kind of off point, but the opportunity is there. You have to think of yourself as a consumer, I suppose.”

 

And what is Daimon liking about the industry, at the moment? “There’s a lot of things I like about it, really. It’s amazing to see so many incredibly talented people on Instagram and whatnot – they inspire me to carry on doing what I’m doing. It’s a bit overkill in some areas, though. There’s a lot of crap going on as well.”

Asked about said crap, he explains, “I think the whole “masculine” attitude sucks. Maybe I’m a feminist, I don’t know, but I can’t stand behind the idea of barbershops being only for men or barbering being only for men. I want to see things merge and for the lines to blur a bit more, because it’s not just male and female, its race as well. I’m not seeing enough white barbers doing Afro hair, I’m not seeing enough Afro barbers doing white hair – I want to see more of that, more merging. It’s 2016.”

 

Daimon recently went down the American taper route. I ask him why he felt the need to do this. “I didn’t want to use Super Tapers anymore. They’re just not powerful enough. I like being able to have a kit that I can do different things with. I need something that does bulk work, and just an arsenal of a toolkit that does everything. I read a lot of things, particularly about the Andis Masters, which I’ve always loved because you can do a ton of techniques on the clippers. Everybody in America uses them, and I’ve always wanted a pair. I got some of them off of your good self, Larry, and I’ve been using them ever since.” I ask if he feels as if they have upped his game, and he tells me, “Definitely. Since then, I’ve customized my kit to get the best out of every piece that I use. There are still some things I want, and I think I’ll continue collecting things because, if you’re passionate about barbering in general, it is good to have a knowledge of different kits and tools.”

 

I was flipping through a Belmont Maker’s brochure recently, and saw that Daimon had actually been featured. Daimon also tells me that they’ve gone on to make a video. I ask Daimon why he felt Belmont chose him to be a part of their marketing, and he gives me a fantastic answer. “Because we’re just awesome, basically. A client of mine, his partner works with Belmont, she saw the shop and was really impressed with the way it looks. They got a whole camera crew in and did a day’s shoot. They’ve done this really beautiful video that tells the story about our shop – you should check that out through Belmont’s Twitter and Facebook feeds. They basically used to champion their UK market, which is obviously very flattering.”

 

He also talks about a pop-up shop event that he and his crew did awhile aho. “We did a thing for CalAid, which was for the refugee crisis in Calais. We put a chair in Copeland Park while the buses rolled in and cut hair for donations. We’d like to do more of that this summer, maybe get some DJs in on Saturdays. We’re big on our music here.”

 

And what is next for Daimon? “I think what is next for me is adventures in other lands. Priorities first: family first and then we’ll think about a decent scale project down under, I think.” With a thank for you for his time, I bid farewell to this enterprising barber who lives the barber life in all new ways.

 

 

If you enjoyed this interview, please be sure to subscribe to see more interviews, tutorials and content! For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com. I’d also like to invite you to follow me on Instagram @larrythebarberman for other free barbering content. You can also email me at info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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Always Innovating: A Talk With Chris Foster

At the Refinery Salon, I get to meet with Chris Foster, barber extraordinaire. Where to even begin with Chris Foster and all he has accomplished? He has been awarded a Master Craftsman award, been a finalist at the British Hair Dressing awards, is a three time winner of the Black Beauty Magazine Barber of the year and has been granted a spot in the Barbering Hall of Fame – it goes without saying that Chris is on top.

 

Naturally, I ask him where he got his inspiration and drive to become a barber, curious about what has pushed him to such great heights. “Let’s go back a little bit,” he tells me. “I did a work experience in a barber shop, and there was one particular gent who I focused all of my attention on. His name was Auggie Cummins, and I focused on him because he was exceptionally good at barbering, and was a fantastic mentor to me. At that level of work experience, I left school and realized there was a sort of hap in my life. I wanted to do something with my life. See, I grew up in Hackney, which is notorious for gang violence. I realized if I didn’t find something productive to do with myself, I might slip into places where I didn’t want to be. I asked Auggie to take me on, and worked for him for about six months for free to learn the craft. I worked in a small barbershop in Topman called Auggie’s Professional Hair Studios where we dressed smartly, and really looked the part of the business to make sure it was professional as it could be. That was the philosophy I built my career on, as well as my education philosophy.”

“I’ve come a long way from where I used to be. When I started out, I started charging seven pounds. Now, I charge seventy pounds. With a cut and a shave, one hundred and ten pounds. I looked at this industry and realized being at the top of the game is really important. That kind of progression is a kind that happens over the years.”

What is it that makes The Refinery different from other shops in the area, I ask Chris. “We try and establish a good rapport with our clientele, and from there, we take the client on a journey. You find out what they want, offer your input and say, “Next time, we’re going to do it. Here’s a slip that will help you on your journey”. I think that’s key, because you want the client to stick with you. That’s what we do here – we try to take our clients on a journey. Is that different from other barber shops? I don’t know.” I point out its more service driven, and Chris agrees that is what they try to do.

 

Chris also does plenty of work outside The Refinery that keep him busy. Asked about some of his other gigs, he tells me, “My career is so varied. I do advertising work as a session stylist. As a session stylist, I get called to do gigs like London Fashion Week, Moscow Fashion Week, etc. In the past, I’ve done New York Fashion Week as well. I’ve gone on tour with celebrities like Usher, Rihanna, Chris Brown, Mary J Blige, and Fat Joe. My career is just one of the most eclectic things, and that’s what I feel is important. That a young guy from Topman, or from Hackney, originally, could do the things that I’ve done. Even this year, my academy, Foss Academy, did some training out of Moscow with the BPA, and I plan on doing a show in Dubai as well. I do lots of shows in the UK as well, and it’s just a roller coaster.”

 

What could barbers expect going into Foss Academy, is my next question. Chris tells me about a little something called The Foss Philosophy: “My thing is, when I started out, I got to a point in my career where I wanted to inspire others. I believe we all need to continue the journey of education, learning, and expanding the repertoire of skills we have. We need somebody to push us on our way – top athletes have their trainers, for example. When I stated out, I couldn’t find an organization to help me with my pain. My pain being that I wanted more. I decided to focus all of my energies on The Foss Academy, because I realized if I am going to do this, then other people must be doing it as well. From my years of doing fashion week all around the world and touring with celebrities, as well as all the work I do in The Refinery and for other groups, I realized I had an incredible body of knowledge here. I created The Foss Academy as a finishing school for barbers, because you can be doing it for many, many years but there comes a point where everyone hits the wall. What I offer in my academy is that extra touch that gets you to the right places. It’s not just barbers, either. Even hairdressers get frustrated. I want to show people that they can travel the world, and get paid to do it. They see big names in the industry and they want to be like them, and to access the things I’ve seen, I want to share that with others.” Chris considers setting up Foss Academy and being able to pass along his knowledge one of his greatest moments, and achievements, in his twenty year long career, as well as being in charge of the largest menswear show for London Fashion Week. People who want to experience that knowledge for themselves can check out Chris’ Youtube channel Hair by Chris Foster.

 

Coming back to his many awards and accolades, I ask Chris why he thinks he has achieved all that he has. “I think the very first thing that I wanted to do, and I advise anybody in the industry to do, is try to be the expert. Try and put yourself in the position where you are seen as the go-to-person,” he explains. “I’ve done a lot of advertising gigs where a company is hunting for somebody who they as the expert. Guys, that person had better be you. You’re as good as your last haircut. Obviously, there’s politics involved, but I think, ultimately, if your work is really good, that is the most important thing. I’ve been called on many TV programs for my expert positioning, and for being seen as an expert in the producer’s eyes. It’s really important that the industry sees you as an expert, I can’t stress that enough.”

Not only is Chris an expert, but he is a gentleman that is constantly pushing the boundaries in men’s styling. Is there something he is specializing in at the moment? “I will say,” he answers, “my philosophy is innovate or die. I’m constantly innovating, my work is constantly changing, especially photographically. I try and look at certain things, and am constantly inspired by movies. I go to a lot of art shows and hang around with creative people. What happens when something is no longer in vogue? You have to keep experimenting an innovating. If you are the go-to person in the industry, you have to disturb what is going on. If everybody is doing something, there’s no point in doing in.”

“I’ve got a steady collection, and one of the collections I’ve done was something called Sin City. If you check out my website, hairbychristfoster.com, you can see that I took on the role of creating a graphic novel of men’s hair. The main thing was the story behind the hair. My most recent collection is based on Star Wars. Use the light and the dark side of the force, things like that. You have to constantly do things differently, and that’s what I’ve noticed in the industry. I’m doing a mini seminars between this year and next year for guys who want to change the game. Collections are really important, because to be seen as a big influence, to be seen in the right places, people have to see your creative philosophy. For instant, I just got a big advertising gig. Can’t tell you who it is, because it isn’t out yet, but they saw some of my work online – not on Instagram, not on any social media outlets, and said “We want that person to do it”. There is a creative thought process behind that. I’ve put elements together: photography on the right models, makeup, a general synergy when it comes to forming a collection. Putting a picture up of your fade is great, but certain elements are missing. Someone needs to see how you got to the end goal. That is what led to me being able to go to places like Moscow, Dubai, and I’ll be off to Singapore in eight months. That’s what they look at.”

 

My next question is on the state of the barbering industry: what Chris is loving and hating about it at the moment. “When I started out, barbering wasn’t a proud place to be. Twenty years ago, it was totally different. The game has changed completely. I used to do shows like Sela International, and people were impressed because they hadn’t seen that kind of work before. I’m proud to be a barber.”

“What I don’t like about the industry, well, it’s funny. With the re-emergence of British barbering, it brought a lot of bad mouthing and a lot of jealousy in people. It’s sad, because when we come together we can do a world of good. This is the oldest profession in the world, we didn’t invent the wheel, so there’s no point in being jealous of other people. That is why I mentor, and pass along my knowledge to other people, because it will be someone else’s’ time soon.”

 

Chris also plays a role on The British Barber Council, and is a vocal advocate for registration. He shows me is Ambassador Award from The Hair Council. “I feel very proud to be given this, because I feel it is important that our industry is seen as a legitimate profession. Barbering is one of the first professions that ever existed, and our industry is so unregulated at present. If you’ve got a bit of money, you can set up a shop, and it isn’t seen as a profession because anyone can do it. I took the hit in the ‘90s, and spent something like five hundred pounds per week to go to college; I had nothing. But I can call myself a state registered barber for it. I was really honored to receive my Master Craftsman at The House of Commons. I urge anyone in this industry to get yourself registered. I’ve been a part of a few think tanks that have gotten involved with state registration. I’ve done a few events. Last year, for November, we did a shave off with Gary Machin and the MPs who, funnily enough, had no idea our industry was so unregulated. The message I want to get out there is to get registered to show you are a professional.”

 

Finally, Chris offers his parting advice to barbers: “Train to be the best, be your own best, learn from the best.” I add that if you need to travel to find the best, you pack up your suitcase and you travel. Chris adds, “Sacrifice is key. I haven’t achieved everything without sacrifice. As a man of faith, I believe that when you sacrifice, when you give to others, the rewards will come back. When you get to the pinnacle of your career, share it with others.”

 

A truly inspiring interview from the amazing Chris Foster, a man who constantly pushes boundaries and really shows what it takes to get to the top of the industry. I wish him the best, and can’t wait to see what innovations he brings next.

 

For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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BarberNV: Barber Of The Month – Baldy’s Interview With Larry

I’m here with a barber that needs no introduction, but I’ll introduce him anyways: Baldy of Baldy’s Barbers, multi-shop owner and international educator for Andis, as well as nominee for Barber of the Month for BarberNV. With his impressive resume, I wanted to get the latest on his story since our interview last year. Needless to say, he does not disappoint.

 

Our conversation first turns to registration of barbers within the UK. Baldy is one of few barbers who has joined the #get registered movement, and is indeed state registered. I ask him about his experience with state registration, and feelings towards UK barbers being unregulated, at present. “I don’t think it’s a bad thing to be associated to something. I think for someone like me that has no qualifications, I think it’s ideal to be registered somewhere, to have an association behind you. I think it’s good that your clients can come in, and go, “Alright! They’re state registered.” At some point, it’d be nice if the various associations could merge together and make it more compulsory. I don’t see why a representative from each couldn’t form a board.”

 

“The reactions I got in America, when I told them that there are no regulations in the UK, well, they honestly saw it as a bit weird. Out there, you have to have a barber license for barbering, then you have stylists, who can’t use an open razor because they aren’t licensed to do it. You tell them that anyone can open a barber shop, which is both good and bad, and they obviously have a lot of questions. As for the criteria I would suggest, I would think proof that you’d been in the industry six years or longer would suffice – older blokes would get grandfathered in. When they’re starting school, newcomers will know they need to be pre-registered. That gives people enough time to get themselves in the right mindset.”

 

“The industry is fantastic,” he continues. “For someone like me to go out to New York or IBS – it was something that I dreamt about doing when I was young. For us, we get to use fantastic gear, the best equipment that there is, and I get to tell my story. You put a part of yourself into everything that you do: career, education, dreams, and everyday life. The more people that want to listen, the more I’m going to tell them.”

 

The conversation transitions to his international UK presentation in New York featuring himself and Keiron. “Since we’ve been with Andis, which was a year ago, it’s been quite action packed. We’ve done lots of different events, presentations and appearances in the UK, and I was asked to do a live interview at Barber UK last year on the BBA stage. I said, “Yeah, I’ll do it. I’ve done worse.” Keiron, my stage partner, came up with me and we absolutely smashed it. We literally came off the stage to Karen, the vice president of Andis, waving us over to ask us if we fancied doing America next year. We said sure, and thought nothing of it. As the years went on, though, it got to the point where it was starting to look like going to New York was becoming a reality. We had a choice: either Orlando or New York. In hindsight, I’m glad we chose New York. We had such a great reception from people. We had people coming up and say, “Oh, I know who you are!” It was strange, but so fantastic. Actually took the opportunity to swap numbers with some really cool people. I was at the Andis stand with Keiron, and across from us was the Layrite stand where Julius was. Julius, an extremely well known barber, and the even more famous Donnie Hawley, was demoing the Layrite product line. It was super exciting to see and chat with them a bit.”

 

I remind Baldy of our trip to ground zero on his off time, and he recalls looking up at the sky scrapers and thinking “I’m just a barber.” It was an awe-inspiring moment, and absolutely worth being a part of our discussion. “That’s the thing. We’re barbers,” he explains. “You’ve got to stay grounded, because this is my everyday job. I come here every day, and I charge twelve pound fifty to walk in my door and go, “There you go, mate. There’s a nice haircut, thanks very much, and see you in a few weeks”.

 

Baldy has been barbering for thirty years, which I feel is a big part in why he has been nominated for BarberNV’s Barber of the Month; it is hard to stack that kind of experience. As I tell him about the time he has clocked, I explain: “To get a degree it takes three or four years. To become a professor, it takes eight years. You, must be a grand professor in your game, and as much as you have to stay grounded, you have to think about your experience. You know how to market a business. You know to keep a customer happy, and you know when they have problems.”

“That’s part of my everyday life, and it helps that we treat our shop a bit like a stage” Baldy replies. “It’s the same when we go on stage. We go up there, and tell the audience, “We’re going to bring you into the barbershop.”  People will associate with it, and they’ll know that’s what it is like in the shop. We go on that basis and then chuck in some technical knowhow; little things like that. When I came off the stage once, I spoke to Simon Shaw, who told me, “Do you know what I really liked? It is like a barber shop. It’s a good concept the way you do things.””

 

Since the last time I spoke with Baldy, he has visited the London School of Barbering on several occasions.  From his time there, he reveals, “I think what they do down there is great. The ability that they teach to people over a short period of time is fantastic, and it’s good for us to go down and see what other people are doing. I like that they get guest barbers in. I’ve changed the way I’m cutting after going new places and seeing how others are doing it. I’ve watched Danny Arborin, who was an ambassador on stage for Andis at IBS, for some time and the way they do their fades with a slightly softer look is really cool – I’ve started cutting my own fades more like that. The blurry fades are softer, whereas waves might be a bit sharper. I honestly think it depends on how high you are wanting to go, so the transition from, say, the temples downwards. We do a thing called the skull fade, which everyone knows about by now. We would ordinarily take it up quite high – that’s our thing, that’s how we do things. We leave a slight wave line in it, and it starts lower and builds up. It leaves a heavier shadow on the templates, and you get a sharper look, more contrast.”

 

What is next for Baldy, I ask, curious to see what the Andis educator will be up to. “Right now, I’m just going with the flow. There’s certain companies I want to work more with. If people contact me to do something, and it’s feasible, then I’ll probably do it. I love the pop-up barber shop stuff, and I love doing commercial week.  I have some other stuff in the pipeline.” Curious fans should be advised to keep an eye on his Instagram @baldysbarbers for exciting news, and possible product presentations down the line.

 

As for his parting advice to those who want to reach the same place he has out there, Baldy advices: You have to work at things, get good at what you do, first. Contact people in your industry, go and work with others that you can learn from, or who are doing similar things. It’s not about the money. It’s about getting to where you need to be. Pick up knowledge where you can, and get yourself out there. It won’t happen overnight, but keep at it and you’re sure to get somewhere.” With that, I thank him for his time. It is easy to see why BarberNV nominated him – Baldy is a truly inspiring barber, and I know many are excited to see what he will do next.

 

For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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Tuning & Service your Andis Masters for a kick ass performances

 

This is Larry the Barberman coming at you from barbers.tv with some more ninja tips for your barbering equipment. Today, I want to demonstrate how to perform a full service on an Andis Masters hair clipper. The particular Andis Masters hair clipper that I am working with today has been dropped, so naturally it is suffering from a lousy performance. What I intend to show you is both how it performs now and how it will perform later after we do the full service.

In the video, I demonstrate with a piece of hair. You can see my perspective from another camera, and what you will notice is that the Andis Masters hair clipper has very little cutting power, and its performance is severely lacking. Even after we adjust the power screw, which you can see in the demonstration, and which normally gives it more power, it is not actually causing any kind of change. What that tells me is that the mechanism is out of line.

 

Our first step to perform the service will require a flat head screwdriver so we can open up the Andis Masters. You can see the two screws on the hair clipper in the video – remove them and set them in an area where you will not lose them. I always recommend using a rubber mat, personally. If you lose your screws, you’ll no doubt have to order more from the manufacturer, which will lose you time and, by association, money. To show you a bit of clipper architecture, the part you will first see in this video is the clipper armature. This is the part that is responsible for moving the blade. The next part you will see is the tension screw. As I mentioned before, because the power screw wasn’t responding, that led me to conclude that the tension is out.

Now, when I say tension, what do I mean? In this case, the tension is how tightly squeezed together the bottom blade is, which is the cutting blade, from the comb blade. If the tension is too tight, you won’t be able to move the blades. If it is too loose, it will impair the cutting, even without hair being present. The objective today is to get the tension to the perfect amount and get the power up so it starts to cut properly once more.

 

Because the clipper has been dropped, our second step is to reset the position of the mechanism. For this, you will be using a pointed pair of pliers. As shown in the video, you will guide the pointed pliers into the two holes, and turn it clockwise to get it to the point where it stops moving. Funnily enough, it stops at twelve o’ clock in the video. Now, what I need to do next is turn it counterclockwise one rotation to reset the mechanism – so that is one full turn until it is back on twelve o’clock, or whatever area it landed on for you.

 

With the mechanism in the right place, we are next going to adjust the tension. To adjust the tension, we first need to loosen the screw as shown in the video, which is the tension screw. Next, we will turn the machine one. We want to use our flat head screwdriver, and get it underneath the fork – that is what holds the blade. As you can see in the demonstration, has two Torx screws. Underneath that is a black piece of metal, which is the fork, and it is what holds the blade. We are going to put the screwdriver underneath it. Now that we have loosened the tension screw and lifted it up, we want it to make a loud rattling noise, as you can hear in the video. When you have it making the noise, we want to turn the tension screw until the noise goes away; that is the sweet point for tension. So, keep turning it clockwise until you hear a powerful humming noise, and we are good!

 

Next, turn the machine off. It is time to reassemble it, and play with the power screw so we can get the best maximum power. You’ll remember me mentioning the power screw earlier when deciphering the issue. What we want to do is bring the armature closer to the motor to give the hair clipper more power. Mind, if it gets too close, it will make a loud noise. What we want to do then is turn it the other way to take it off the arm until it stops making said noise. At that point, we know we have maximum power. That means it will be right on the motor. We want it there, and we also want the cutting blades to be covering every single tooth.

 

Now, we return back to our piece of hair. Before our adjustments, it wasn’t cutting at all: there was little sound and the blades were barely moving. As a ninja tip, I also recommend a drop of oil to give it even more of a boost. As you can see in the video, once we give it another attempt, it is cutting beautifully now. There you go! One full service of the Andis Masters by Larry the Barberman. I hope you found this demonstration useful!

 

If you enjoyed this tutorial, please be sure to subscribe to see more interviews, tutorials and content! For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com. I’d also like to invite you to follow me on Instagram @larrythebarberman for other free barbering content. You can also email me at info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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Will The Andis Masters And T Outlinners Ever Reach The U.K./ Europe?

Today, I chat with Aileen Nunez and Bruce Bock from the Andis team. Aileen is the international education manager for Andis, and manages all education activities as well as eighteen talented individuals throughout the world. Bruce is a marketing and communications manager that handles all of the PR, social media and means to handle Andis’ brand. Getting both of these stellar folks together gave me the perfect opportunity to ask a question I am sure many of my UK friends wonder: when will the UK be getting similar equipment to the American Andis line?

Bruce speaks up first. “I can kind of shed some light on that, Larry. We know there’s been a huge demand for Andis clippers and trimmers in the UK market, and we’ve been listening to those needs. We have several exciting things under development that are probably going to roll out mid-summer and later into next year.” When it comes to what is already available in the UK, Bruce talks about a US Pro high-speed magnetic motor clipper, as well as a US Fade model. They are essentially looking to expand upon those two tools that have been in the market for over a year now.

I direct my next question to Aileen and she talks about the ProFoil Lithium Titanium shaver which was recently brought out. “I love it because it’s a cordless and lasts for ninety minutes of run time.” Aileen smiles, “This is great for barbers and stylists, because stylists can’t use a straight razor, so they need a way to get as close as possible. We also have the Supra ZR and the D8 in the UK market.”

Of course, the real question at hand is when will the UK be seeing the much loved Andis T-Outliner available? “We’ll have some really exciting things happening this year,” Aileen answers. When I ask her for dates, she adds, “Nice try, but nothing yet!”

As for other US equipment nearing its debut, Bruce talks about the Pulse ZR detachable blade clipper. This lovely machine comes with a high-speed lithium ion battery for maximum power: two hours of run time, five speeds, and generally shaping up to be a versatile and powerful tool.

It’s clear that Andis is going to have a lot to show the UK next time it comes around, which will be Barber UK and Barber Connect later in the spring. Aileen adds that they’ll be at Saloon International as well. Keep your eyes peeled, folks! Andis is sure to have some exciting things to share coming later this year!

If you enjoyed this interview, please be sure to subscribe to see more interviews, tutorials and content! For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com. I’d also like to invite you to follow me on Instagram @larrythebarberman for other free barbering content. You can also email me at info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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5 Lazy Barbers Hair Clipper Hacks That Will Change Your Barberlife

This is Larry the Barberman of barbers.tv coming at you with my five favorite hacks for getting the maximum performance out of your hair clippers with minimal tools and minimal time. As barbers, we all have those lazy days where dragging out the massive tool kits and disassembling our hair clippers just seems like a drag. Thumbs up from everyone who can agree with that statement!

Hack 1:

My first lazy hack, my favorite one: do you find there are times where you need to get the blade clean on your hair clippers and trimmers, but you can’t be bothered to get out a screwdriver to remove the blades from the trimmer or clipper. If that is the case, this simple hack is for you. All you need is some sanitation spray, some clipper oil, a pipe cleaner and a hairbrush of your choice.

 

Once you have all of those items, all you need to do is first brush down your hair clipper or trimmer on the front or sides to remove all of the loose hair. After that, get the pipe cleaner and fold it in half to double the cleaning area. On the side of your clipper, or trimmer, you will notice that there is a gap between the cutting blade and the common blade. Insert the pipe cleaner here and drop it slightly so that it can also clean the bottom. Move that in and out of the blades to get them properly clean. After you’ve done that, remove the pipe cleaner, and reach for the sanitation spray. First, turn on the clipper or trimmer, and spray the top as well as down the sides. What that does is sanitize the inside of the blade, and it also removes and loose hair that the pipe cleaner might have missed. Once you’ve done that, use your bed of tissues to wipe down the excess lubrication and sanitation spray. Turn on the hair clipper or trimmer once more and place some of the blade oul to the right, center and to the left so that the oil doesn’t run down into the actual unit. When you are done, just wipe off any excess oil and you’re done! That’s why it is my favorite – simple and clean.

Hack 2:

On to my second favorite lazy hack. Have you ever been to the USA, purchased some US hair clippers or trimmers, and then plugged them into a standard transformer (as shown in the video) only to experience a horrific noise. These transformers are 240 volts to 110 volts with a 40 hertz cycle, thus they are losing out on their full performance. All you need to do is plug it into a Frequcny60hz converter, which basically converts the UK and European voltage of 230 to 240 volts down to 120 volts, with a 60 hertz cycle; essentially making it as if you had plugged it directly into a US power outlet. Seamless performance and a perfect purring noise without the hassle of transformers – what could be better?

Hack 3:

Do you sometimes find that your hair clipper or trimmer has issues with the power cutting out intermittently, and just a simple bit of pressure from your thumb on the power switch makes it come alive again? Fortunately, this hack is very simple. All you need is some tissue, which you can see in the video I have used to create a soft bed underneath the affected clipper. You will also need some contact cleaner, a screwdriver, and a standard Phillips screwdriver. With those in hand, let’s get started.

 

First and foremost, in the case of the Wahl Senior I am using, we need to remove three screws. I recommend having a corrugated rubber mat so you do not lose your screws. With the front casing removed, we now have access to the switch. What we then do is just pop the switch out. Please ensure that the power is off. Now, these switches can often get clogged from dirt in between the switch. What you want to do now is use the contact cleaner and blast out all the hair and dirt that may have gotten lodged in between the conductor, which stops the clipper or trimmer from working effectively. What I do is pull the switch to either the left or right first and put the straw from the contact cleaner in the opposite side of the switch before giving it a good few blasts. You’re going to no doubt see hair and dirt coming out. Flip the switch to the other side and repeat this process. Just a tissue to wipe up the excess and we can move on to the next step.

Once that is done, simply pop the switch back into position. You want to make sure that it sits in the housing correctly, and is nice and snug. Once it is in, put the belly back on your clipper and, once the housing is back on, we can plug in the clipper and turn it on. I recommend letting a good five minutes elapse , but you will see that that clipper or trimmer is now running nice and smooth, no matter how much you wiggle the switch.

Hack 4:

 

            This one is for folks who persistently find that the lever arm is loose on their: Wahl Super Taper, Wahl Senior, Wahl Icon or any other Wahl that has the same shape as the aforementioned. All you need to do to remedy this problem is gather: a Philips screwdriver, some cotton swabs, contact cleaner, and (optionally) a hair blower.

 

First, we need to loosen the screw and set it aside. What I want to do now with the hair blower is basically blast out the hole, as shown in the video, to free any loose debris that may be lodged inside of the frame.

Second, we will want to use the contact cleaner, which is an alcohol based cleaner, to blade the inside of the hole to get any remaining dirt or debris. Just insert the straw and blast away. Now, we know that the contact is clean. Half the reason that this inconsistent power issue happens is due to loose fillings occasionally getting lodged in the area during the manufacturing process. The objective of this hack is basically to put a strong lock on the device so that it doesn’t happen again.

Now, we use the cotton swab to, again, clean out all of the area so we are sure there is no grease or anything still clinging on. Next, we’ll want to reach for the thread locker. Thread locker is basically a glue for screws and threads to lock. Well reach for the screw and the lever, and do a simple application of the thread locker by putting one line of it across the thread. With that done, we’ll put the thread locker screw back in.

Coming to the actual lever, you will notice that there is a notch. This notch needs to be lined up with the female notch, which is in the lever itself. First, we need to find it, as you can see in the video. Once you’ve found it, you basically start gently screwing it in with fairly firm pressure and slow movements. Afterwards, have a quick check that the lever is working: you’ll know that the female thread has met the male thread when all is good, so just give it one last tighten and then let it stand to dry. I recommend five to six minutes, and then you are good!

Hack 5:

 

            My finale lazy hack is just a little trick to tighten the tension in your hair clipper or trimmer to increase the performance. If you have clients complain that their hair is being pulled, especially when you are using the Wahl Senior, Super Taper, or Icon, even though you know the blades are sharp, than this hack is for you. Nine times out of ten, it is caused by the tension being off. When I say tension, I mean how tightly the top blade is pressed to the bottom: too tight and the blades will not move. Too loose and the performance will be impaired. Fortunately, this is an easy hack.

 

All you need for this hack is a Phillips screwdriver. Again, I would recommend doing all of this on a corrugated rubber mat for the sake of your screws. Once the casing is off, I’m just going to give the inside a basic clean – it’s always a good idea when you have your clipper or trimmer open. As you can see in the video, I just bring the sponge back. Now, to increase the tension of this clipper without undoing the rest of it, the hack is very simple.

This particular clipper is the Wahl Senior. You can see in the video which part is the belly and which part is the back. What you want to do is lie the clipper on its back. You can see in the video that there is a metal stump. What you want to do is use your thumb to pull it back slightly, until you feel a tiny bend and the metal arm attached to it. It’s as simple as that. That will give you a tension kick. Once you’ve felt it bend slightly, replace your blade as well as your common blade.

 

What’ve we done is pulled the stump up so that the cutting blade is more tightly squeezed to the cutting blade. This is a common problem that, fortunately, has an easy fix. In one of my other videos, I’ll go through the full procedure for increasing the tension, as it is a lot more involved than what I’ve shown you here.

 

This is the fifth and final hack from Larry the Barberman for lazy barbers out there. Utilize them and your barbering game is sure to improve!

 

If you enjoyed this tutorial, please be sure to subscribe to see more interviews, tutorials and content! For more information, you can email me at: info@larrythebarberman.com. I’d also like to invite you to follow me on Instagram @larrythebarberman for other free barbering content. You can also email me at info@larrythebarberman.com

 

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