A barber is only as good as the tools he or she works with. So if you want to be a top-notch barber, you need the best barber tools of the trade. Why? Higher quality tools can last longer and provide a better experience for your clients. They also show that you’re a professional and aren’t willing to compromise on quality. To select the best tools for you and your clients, here are some tips to keep in my mind:
Professional Barber Shears
Every barber needs a good pair of shears, but if you want to be a great barber, you’ll need several good pairs of shears. And shears are NOT one size fits all—you’ll need different types to achieve a variety of hairstyles and cuts:
- Shears: These should be five to seven inches in length and will be your main tool for cutting. These are great for blunt cuts and deep point cuts.
- Thinning shears: These shears typically have 27 to 40 teeth and can be used to thin out and blend sections of your client’s hair. Thinning shears, particularly those with 10-24 teeth, can also be used to add texture and tame unruly sections of hair.
- Narrow shears: Usually about five inches in length, this smaller pair of shears is better for detailed cuts.
To choose a good pair of shears, make sure the handles are a comfortable fit for your fingers. They should also be made of stainless steel, not titanium, which doesn’t hold up as well under heat and can wear out more quickly.
Choose the Best Clippers
Not every client—nor every haircut—calls for scissors, so you’ll also need a quality pair of clippers. The most important feature to look for is a powerful motor. You want a clipper that has a high motor speed (6,000 rotations or more per minute.) The other important feature of a good pair of clippers are the blades:
- Pick durable blades. Again, stainless steel is your best bet, but ceramic blades also hold up well to heat.
- Opt for self-sharpening blades, which run back and forth past each other to maintain sharpness. This can save you from having to constantly sharpen the blades manually, but it will only work if you keep the blades clear of hair and debris, and well-oiled.
- Look for rounded blades. The best clippers have rounded blades, a safety feature that protects skin from being cut.
Stainless Steel or Carbon Fiber Razors
Some of your clients may prefer a razor over clippers, so you will need a good straight razor, made of either stainless steel, which prevents rusting, or carbon fiber, which is durable. Make sure the razor is designed for barbershop use. To protect the blade, the razor should also have a water-proof cover to further prevent rusting.
Combs and Brushes
Two other essential tools that you’ll need are combs and brushes. A good barber’s comb is typically 12 inches in length with longer, courser teeth on one end and shorter, finer teeth on the other. When it comes to brushes, you’ll need a few different types:
- Paddle brush: Comfortable on the scalp and good for detangling hair.
- Vent brush: Appropriate for wet hair and for adding a natural wave to hair.
- Round brush: Classic go-to for blowouts, this brush has plastic quills.
- Boar bristle brush: Used for coarse and very curly hair.
Top-quality tools can’t make you a great barber, but the right skills and knowledge can! At Salon Success Academy, you’ll learn the technical skills you need, the right tools to use, and even how to build your clientele and be a professional in the workplace. Call 1-877-987-HAIR (4247) or fill out the form to get started on the path to this rewarding career.