For a while it may have seemed like barbershops would become another antiquated relic of a bygone time, but no longer: Old is new, folk music is popular, Star Wars is in movie theaters again, and hipster men love barbershops.
In an article recently published by The Art of Manliness, a website dedicated to “the lost art of being a man,” Drew Danburry was interviewed to discuss his barbershop practice in Povo, Utah.
He discussed the rise of cosmetology in the 70s, after the clean-cut style went out of fashion with the hippie movement. Barber work and cosmetology were once licensed separately, barbers focusing on male hairstyles and straight-razor shaving and cosmetology on longer hairstyles and the dyeing of hair. As those clean looks went out of fashion, so did the men who cut them.
But in the new millennium, we’ve seen a shift back towards the old styles alongside the new. Men are free to wear their hair long, wrapped up in a man-bun, or dyed to a whole range of colors, but the world has made room for a sleek, clean cut look again.
Where barbershops might have recently been filled with older gentlemen looking for a straight-shave and a conversation about the good ole’ days, these establishments have seen a surge of younger, more diverse clientele.
Hipster culture values reclaiming old ideas, styles, and ways of living, for use in the modern world. Barbers might benefit from integrating some cosmetology in their work, but that old-timey flair is now the selling point of their work for many customers. After all, in a mass of men with unruly hair, a good shave and a masterfully styled haircut goes a long way.
These new barbers, like Drew, know their craft and its appeal.