How to talk like a barber

Posted by Jimmy Figg's on

Today, we're going to help you talk like a barber. No, not the sweary talk, though you'll hear a lot of that around a barber shop, no, I'm talking undercuts, tapers, and all of those other terms that get thrown around. So here's a quick breakdown of some of the phrases you'll hear our barbers throwing around.

Undercut: traditionally a shorter length around the back and sides with the top longer and completely disconnected (that is, not blended in). 

Taper/ Fade: this is where the hair is blended up from shorter hair length near the neck up to a longer hair length near the top. 

Neckline Square, rounded or tapered: necklines are very much a personal thing and can be either squared off to give the illusion of a wider neck, or tapered- where the neckline is quite short, and follows the natural hairline. Tapered necklines generally grow out more neatly, while square necklines might be preferred if you have a messy hairline.

Hard part: this is where the part in your hair is slightly widened by clippers or a blade to give a harder line

High Fade: where the transition from different clipper lengths is quite high on the sides and back, around the temples. Sometimes you'll hear high and tight which refers to a high fade that starts super short.

Low fade: the transition is quite low on the head- just above the ears from the front

Skin fade: This is where the fade starts at 0 around the top of the neck, tapering up to a longer length

Thinned out: this is where the barber will use thinning scissors, which are designed to only cut some of the hairs, leaving others untouched. Some men with bushy hair like to have their thinned on the top every cut but most hair only needs to be thinned out every couple of haircuts.

Sideburns: Generally barbers will ask what you want done with your side burns and most commonly there are three options- bottom of the ear, middle of the ear or top of the ear.



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How to get the best haircut from your barber

Posted by Jimmy Figg's on

Visiting your barber should be an awesome experience. You do it regularly and pay for the privilege, it's only right that you leave with exactly what you are after. We want to help you get the most out of the experience so here's six tips for you to get the best haircut you can when you visit the barbers. Next week, we'll go in depth with some barber talk so that you can speak the same language, and drop the right terms to get exactly what you want.

Be on time

Barbers generally work to an allocated time for each haircut. Our barbers only have 30 minutes allocated for a haircut and can't go beyond that without throwing our their schedule and other customers. Unfortunately you are late that means that you won't get the full time allotted for you, which will affect the quality of your cut. When you're ready to go on time, the barbers can spend that time doing a full consultation with you before cutting.

No need to wash your hair ahead of time

While it's always nice for our barbers to have clean hair to cut, seeing how your hair naturally sits is great for us so that we can work with your hair, not against it.

Bring ideas and photos of what you'd like.

It really helps if you have a general style in mind. Think of a celebrity/ actor/ character/ sports tar who's hair you like and mention that to the barber. We can look the photo up for you, and we'll then talk to you about what you like about the cut and what you'd change.

Trust your barber

Sometimes you are going to pick a style that just isn't right for you- it might be a different hair texture that you just can't achieve, or it might be high maintenance for you. If you'r barber suggests the hair style won't work- trust them and work with them to come up with a better one.

 During the consultation

Be honest about your hair routine- do you use product, how long do you spend styling it, what kind of activities do you do that might affect your haircut. This will help the barbers to come up with a style that works best for your lifestyle- you're more likely to keep it looking good that way. It will be much easier for you to look after it.

Ask questions

Don't forget to ask your barber any questions you might have- like how to do this style yourself, how to use your product, what product is best for you, how long to leave the cut before next appointment etc. We are here to make you look good everyday, not just when you walk out.


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Beard oil vs Beard balm- what's the deal?

Posted by Jimmy Figg's on

Despite the media trying to stop beards happening (no, they aren't out of fashion and no they don't harbour more germs than a dirty toilet) they are still a thing- we did well over 200 beard trims in July alone. While big, well groomed beards are still popular, we're seeing an increase of small, neat beards in the barbershop. No matter the size of beard, they remain well groomed and looked after and this is key to them looking good.

While washing them is really important (try Bearded Chap beard wash or Baxter of California's daily Facewash) beard oils and beard balms are really important products that our bearded friends need to be aware of. Both have super important functions and depending on your specific circumstances, you'll want to use either or in some cases both.

Put simply- beard oil is an oil based product, the equivalent to a leave in moisturiser or conditioner and the beard balm is wax based- more like a pomade for your beard. Both are going to provide moisture, but beyond that have very different benefits.

A beard balm, like our favourite Scoop Deluxe is the best starting point for an all in one product to moisturise and style a beard. Applied straight after a shower, it will seal in the moisture and make your beard look thicker (making it especially ideal for longer or sparse beards). It's great for longer beards that need styling as it will have a light hold.

Beard oils, such as The Bearded Chap and Handsome Devil will moisturise the skin underneath your beard and are great for that irritating beard itch you get in the first six weeks of growing a beard. They'll tackle unsightly beard-druff- patches of dry skin in your beard and will also soften the beard hair. Beard oils are especially good for new beards and can even make your beard hair grow faster. Don't fall into the trap of using too much oil- 4 drops for an average sized beard- more for longer beards, less for short ones is fine; any more will make you prone to breakouts. You'll also get less breakage in the beard hair with the oils provide moisture and protection.

Beard oils can be used daily- even more in extreme weather conditions and should be preferably applied to dry beards so that they don't look greasy. With both products a small amount is applied to your hands and rubbed together to warm the product and make it easier to distribute through the beard hair. Come up from the bottom with your hands and smooth it through the beard- concentrating on the roots and then spreading it through to the ends of the beard. If you are going to use both apply the oil first and then the balm over the top- this will allow the oil to get to work, while sealing it in.

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How do I get this oil based pomade out of my hair!

Posted by Jimmy Figg's on

We had a question just the other day, from a guy who had bought an oil based pomade from the supermarket (yes, I know, guys. Mistake!) and wasn't able to get it out of his hair. He was used to using water-based Uppercut Deluxe, which as you'd know, from our previous article on water vs oil based pomades, is far easier to wash out of your hair.

As we said in that article, oil based pomades are designed to wear in your hair for 2-3 days, over which time they should begin to break down a bit and will be easier to wash out. That's one of the beauties of oil pomade for some people, but for others they prefer an easy wash pomade that just washes out in the shower.

Unless you are a barber or hairdresser, you might find our solutions a bit strange, and rest assured, you wouldn't want to do it too often, but dishwashing detergent (and in particular Morning Fresh brand) is the absolute best at getting stubborn product out of your hair. It's also fantastic at getting a bad dye job out, but that is another story. If that doesn't work, an anti-dandruff shampoo (think Head and Shoulders) might do the job, and bonus- no dandruff. Ha!

The good news is that, recognising how difficult it is to wash out oil based pomades out of the hair, Reuzel have developed a deep cleaning shampoo designed for just this very purpose. We'll have that product available both in store and online later in the week. We'll let you know on Facebook and instagram when it becomes available.

We love it when we get reader questions, so feel free to send them in. You can contact us many ways- email, direct messages over social media, or even through the contact form on our website. 

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Why bother using a shaving brush?

Posted by Jimmy Figg's on

One area that we get asked about a lot is the need for a shaving brush. Lot's of people just use their hands, it's easier and doesn't cost money - we get that. So, is it actually worth your while to get a shaving brush and use it? Hell to the yes!

Hands do an ok job of spreading the lather out, but if your skin is sensitive, want better skin, or would like the closest, smoothest shave possible, then the shaving brush should be one of the first investments you make in upgrading your gear.

Let's break it down for you.

Badger hair brushes (the best kind) are water porous- this means that they take up the warm water into the bristles. When the bristle brush is swooshed around the shaving soap, the warm water is mixed with the soap to create a richer, thicker lather. This will do a far better job of cushioning your skin than the thin, runny lather you achieve with your hands.

When the shaving brush is applied to your face in small circular motions the bristles have a natural exfoliating effect. This means that they will slough off any dead skins cells as they move along. This has a couple of benefits - it will brighten up acne prone skin, but will also freshen up maturing skin. Just as importantly, in removing the dead skin cells you'll get a far smoother shave as the dead skin won't clog up the blades, keeping them sharper for longer.

Finally, the action of using the shaving brush will lift the hair away from the skin and soften it at the same time. This will allow you to get much closer to the skin each stroke, and also prevents hair from laying down and passing under the blade. A closer shave on the first pass means that you need to do less passes and your skin will be less irritated, while the whole shave will be much quicker. 

So, it's safe to say, shaving brushes do a better job, hands down. Ha!

Check out our full range of shaving brushes here.

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