More than a haircut: the barber's role in modern life
Throughout history, the role of the barber has included many things – shaver, hair cutter, surgeon, dentist. In ancient Greece barbers provided manicures for the elite, and in ancient Rome the role of the barber was tied to a young man’s coming of age, as he sat for his first shave. In the middle ages and beyond, the barber was the person you visited for the extraction of teeth and bloodletting. Today, while the call for surgery and tooth removal is reserved for medical professionals, the role of the barber and the barbershop is so much more than simply cutting hair and shaving faces.
How a man presents himself to the world is a vital part of who he is. How you choose to style your hair and your treatment of facial hair is tied to your personal sense of identity, and getting it right can instil confidence, balance, and happiness.
While in the past the traditional barbershop has been accused of being an overtly, intimidatingly masculine place, the modern barbershop is place where you can embrace your masculinity without anyone else defining what that is. As male grooming is quickly flourishing into a booming industry globally, it’s becoming clear that men are as conscious about their looks as women, and the need for men to be well groomed and able to express their identity and personality through their appearance is an important part of male life.
Not only does the barber cut, style and shave to help reveal the person you want the world to see, but we use our expertise to advise, consult and help you to find a style that is right for who you are.
Highly competitive workplaces, fast-paced living, and pressure from social and mainstream media to be both aesthetically and professionally perfect can grind a man’s confidence down and leave him feeling less than positive about himself.
A 2019 study by grooming giants Wahl has shown that 81% of men feel at their most confident in the two weeks following a haircut. It also showed that a third of respondents felt that a fresh cut gave them confidence in challenging work situations, while 84% of men feel negative or lacking in confidence when they go out without a fresh cut or shave.
This means that the job of the barber is about helping men to feel ready to face the world, giving them the confidence boost they need to take on whatever is thrown at them head-on, and providing all-important positivity about themselves.
Life has accelerated in recent decades, and everyone is feeling the pressure to life full work, social, and family lives. Finding a small pocket of time in which to relax and concentrate on your own needs without work calls, family issues, or social events making demands on you can be a challenge.
A trip to the barbers is more than a necessity for the sake of hygiene and social appearance, it’s an opportunity to take time for yourself, indulge in making yourself look and feel good, and unwind in stylish, comfortable surroundings, being treated by a professional. A good barber knows how to make their clients feel relaxed. The barbershop provides a full experience, and presents an opportunity for the modern man to take a break and spend a good amount of time focussing on himself.
Historically, the barbershop has been a place for communities to meet, share news and engage in discussion around the issues of the day, as well as receiving professional haircuts and shaving. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the barbershop was a place where people would come to play boardgames, make business deals and discuss politics.
Today, a modern barbershop has fewer chess boards, but the tradition of it being a space for social discourse and cultural sharing has endured. The barbershop is a place where opinions, experiences, and interests can be aired and shared, where men can interact with others of differing cultures, political persuasions, and interests, where they can learn, share, and debate to enrich and diversify their social life.
Within this, the role of the barber exists as participant, facilitator, and host, ensuring discussions are kept friendly, debates are healthy, and the conversation is kept flowing.
More than a haircut
The modern barbershop’s role is about providing an essential service in a man’s life, providing consultation, confidence, calmness, and companionship. And on top of all that, you’ll get a great haircut, too.
At ADAM we pride ourselves on the service we provide to our clients. For the full barbershop experience, book an appointment at your nearest shop.