Business is booming for Scottish barber shops as they make a return to High Streets across the country – and it’s all thanks to men going back to their roots in search of a more traditional grooming experience.
Research conducted by the British Barbers’ Association and men’s grooming brand The Bluebeard’s Revenge has revealed a surge of 15 per cent in barber shop openings over the past 12 months with the total number of those trading on Scottish High Streets now standing at approximately 1345 – an increase of 175 compared to this time last year.
The return of the short-back-and-sides hairstyle made popular by the likes of celebrities Cristiano Ronaldo, David Beckham and Gareth Bale has sparked a rise in the number of men paying frequent visits to their local barbers with such high-fashion looks requiring regular maintenance to keep them in shape.
With men now willing to put a greater level of trust in their barbers thanks to rising standards, many are also choosing to part with cash for more indulgent treatments such as the hot towel shave.
It seems Scots are even willing to pay more to maintain their improved image with the average price of a haircut now standing 90p higher than a year ago, at £12.05.
Mike Taylor, director of the British Barbers’ Association said: “Men are looking after themselves a lot more and have finally realised that the barber is the best person to cut their hair, rather than a hairdresser
‘‘ There is also a rising demand for hot towel shaves and salons fail to offer this service.”
To coincide with the new findings, the British Barbers’ Association and The Bluebeard’s Revenge have joined forces to launch an exciting new competition this week, in a true celebration of the nation’s outstanding barbering talent.
Launching this week, Scotland’s Best Barber will see a search the length and breadth of the nation to track down the ultimate skill in men’s hair cutting and styling, with Britain’s Best Shave 2015 winner Luigi Caterino, of The Italian Job barbershop in Galashiels, preparing to take his place on the judging panel.
Luigi, who was crowned king of the wet shaves earlier this year in a competition run by the same duo, has since been named official barber for Rangers FC - and his success is a testament to the honour that comes with receiving such an industry-respected accolade.
The competition is open to anyone currently practicing their trade on Scottish soil, with the top 25 barbers facing an online public vote where examples of their work will be up for scrutiny. The top 3 scoring barbers will then go on to perform in the national final at the 2016 Scottish Barber trade show, held at Edinburgh’s RHC over Sunday and Monday April 24 and 25.