01 May Forecasting Barbering Trends
The following barber forecast is brought to you by Master Barber Chris Jones. Chris is an instructor in our barbering program. Contact admissions to learn more about our program and how to become one of Chris’s students.
As barbers, when we look at haircuts, we often wonder what’s in style and what’s out of style. We are trendsetters – or better yet – forecasters. A meteorologist forecasts what the weather will be throughout the week. And similar to checking the weather, every day, I wake up to check which styles are trending and which are not. And I do this because, when I cut hair, I want to not only give my clients a high-class experience, but also provide them with my high-class expertise.
I do this by researching and asking questions to clients such as:
• What do you do for a living?
• Do you have plans for the weekend?
• What’s your personal style?
This personalized prep work allows me to figure out what would be the best haircut and style to fit their needs and reflect current trends. However, as a barber, I’ve also come to learn that there are some clients that simply ‘like what they like,” and in those cases, you’ll have to simply provide the service as requested.
Being a barber is a craft and it requires intentional forward thinking and retrospect to not only align with the barber industry but truly innovate the game.
In the 1900s, clients kept their hair clean cut with a nice lining – “neatness,” as I’d like to call it, was in. Then, in the early 2000s, styles in barbering trended long on the top with a slight taper or fade on the side. Around 2003, I can remember the mohawk being a popular style that a lot of rappers and athletes were sporting.
This haircut defied gravity and everyone wanted that look. However, though the mohawk is still very popular, due to some career requirements around hair/dress, people in diverse career positions realized that the haircut didn’t fit some of their professions. So, to address this, the barber industry came up with different mohawk styles ranging from the south of France and fro hawk mohawk to the faux hawk, just to name a few. And with these different mohawk styles, we, as barbers, are able to give our clients the cut they wanted while also fitting any professional guidelines.
In addition to workplace guidelines, it’s also important to note that forecasting barbering trends can also be dependent upon where you live. In states like Florida where the weather hardly ever shifts, neither do some of their haircut styles like the Caesar cut. The Caesar haircut has been around since Julius Caesar and it is described as a basic, all-around-even haircut, or a cut with a slight taper to give more definition and flavor (and it lasts longer). The cut is worn mostly by professionals like doctors, lawyers and most business men. Yet, if you are from the northern states, including the Midwest, where the weather can change every day, you’ll notice that hairstyles change as well. You’ll see haircuts like the afro, mohawk, low-fade, mid-fade, high-fade, bald-fade and so many others.
In my shop, the weather changes with every client that walks through our doors. Sometimes it changes so much that I have to keep a close pulse on trends daily to ensure the experience clients have in my shop is unmatched anywhere else.
And many may ask: How do you keep up with these trends? How do you provide an unmatched experience? What makes you stand out? And this is a great question! I’ll survey the mall, check the internet, search prime social media outlets (i.e., YouTube), and most of all, I connect with my clients. Even though I am a professional barber, I’ve learned that my clients also have valuable insights. Of course, it’s up to me to register for continuing education classes and to keep my skills polished by learning about forecast changes within the beauty/barber industry, but it truly takes a village.
So to my barber community, let’s stay tuned into forecast trends of the barber world, because it changes every day, but in order to change the lives of our clients, the prep work starts with us.