I’m about to become the best “backseat driver” as it relates to telling you how to be a barber, but I think I have the qualifications.
I have had a beard trim and/or haircut in 30+ countries and am qualified to say that 95% of barbers suc…could improve. This blog is a post of all the different techniques that have been used on me. Some orgasmic. Most average. A few a total waste of money.
As many barbers usually rely on repeat business, I figure I’ll provide my opinion on setting yourself apart.
Here is a guide to putting yourself in the top 99% of all barbers in the world:
Step 0 (optional): Offer a drink while the customer waits in your comfortable waiting area
Step 1: Trim/style beard, as requested, with clippers or electric razor
Step 2: Warm towel over face for 2 minutes
Step 3: Carve requested style into beard with a straight razor
Step 4: Trim mustache
Step 5: Trim hairs to the right and left side of the mouth opening
Step 6: Trim/Style hairs below the lower lip
Step 7: Shave with straight razor hairs on the forehead and around eyebrows (feels amazing)
Step 8: Trim eyebrows
Step 9 (optional): Add beard coloring
Step 10: Trim below the neck
Step 11: Head, neck, shoulder, arm massage
Step 12: Offer beard oil
Step 13: Style back of neck hairs
If the customer opted for a haircut, add these next steps:
Step 14: Straight razor to skim the top of head hair for evenness
Step 15: Shampooing with a head massage
Step 16: Styling
The barber used a straight razor trimming my beard into a perfect C-shape as I asked. He also added a bit of color to make it look fuller and show off that C-line. He added a hot towel over my face before getting started and finished up with a nice styling and trim of the area around and below the lips. To finish, he used an automatic massage tool on my shoulders for 2-minutes. This all took about 45 minutes. Cost: $4
The barber talked a BIG game yet takes the last place in my book because he used an electric razor only and still was able to make my neck bleed. He also fully ignored hairs around my lip. I was in and out in about 8 minutes. Cost: $15
You need a proper barber chair. This means that it reclines for the shave. The head should have enough padding that the back of the customer’s head doesn’t start to feel uncomfortable after 5 minutes. Barbers, you’ll know this if the customer slightly tweaks the position of his head more than once during the shave. If you’re doing things right (or, if the customer is just super tired) the customer should be in a relaxation daze during the shave.
If you want bonus points, get an adjustable footrest that can be adjusted upon recline with a padded side the customer can put up their feet on.
To transform your barbershop into a 5-star experience, use any of the following strategies.
Barbershops are notorious for NOT selling. Imagine going to a restaurant and NOT being given a menu. You’d probably buy something familiar to you. You probably wouldn’t buy things like wine or dessert. Restaurants are smart. They try to upsell you on things that make sense.
Barbershops, on the other hand, don’t. Yesterday, my barber shoved hot wax in my nose and then pulled it, along with all of my nose hairs, out of my nostrils. If I’m being honest, it was exhilarating. The insides of my nose went back in time 25 years!
These two services make sense. They pair well together.
What about if your client is thinning? Offer him a hair-growth shampoo.
Dandruff? Have a product ready to offer to combat this affliction.
If he has a beard, why not offer beard wax, beard oil, beard comb, etc.?
You’re the expert, right? So take some of your damn time, expert, and find the best products out there for the money and offer them to your customers.
…but I don’t earn any money from product sales or commission from upselling other hair services, so why should I? First, for job security. Trust me, your boss knows who’s bringing in what kind of money. Same as he notices how many repeat customers you have.
Second, propose a deal with your boss. Commission on sales of hair products and services. Bam. You just increased your monthly income by your selling abilities.The best thing a barber can do to increase his monthly income is upselling on those products/services that make sense. Barbers are TERRIBLE at selling. Click To Tweet
You know you’re a good barber if you have a nicely kept beard. Most barbers either don’t have a beard or have a disheveled one. This is my sure-fire way to identify a good barber as most will say they can do the job while we know most cannot.