Monday 10/13/2014: Hattori Hanzo presents Clipper Cutting w/ Cream The Barber.

A couple of weeks ago, my buddy Chris aka Cream The Barber presented the opportunity to assist him in his Hattori Hanzo Clipper Cutting class. While at one point the opportunity to have my own haircutting class presented itself, I truly felt that (at that moment in time) I wasn’t fit to teach anyone “my” techniques. But, that was a while ago! And helping out for a class wasn’t something I couldn’t do. So, it was done!

The class was held at a salon in San Jose called Stocks and Blondes, which oddly enough was a salon I was relatively familiar with. The salon was set up to accommodate 40 or so stylists/barbers. At first, I was skeptical that it would be that big of a class, but as we got to the salon, finding an empty seat wasn’t easy! Pretty sure there were a few people left standing.

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GAMETIME!

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Since we were dealing with more stylists than barbers, getting them hip to clipper lingo was important. Funny enough, a majority of these gals probably have been doing hair far longer than I have, but weren’t well versed in barber terminology for the hardware we use. But… that’s expected… Since it’s not something they do on a daily basis, it’s not surprising that their knowledge of clippers wasn’t the same as a barbers, especially since a majority of them were used to scissor-over-comb everything! But, with a crowd this eager to learn, it wasn’t difficult getting them up to speed.

After the theory portion of the class, it was time for the fun part… THE DEMO!

Chris has his way of fading, which is similar to many barbers, but is also different from a lot of barbers… yeah, get it?

Now: How does he fade? WELL…That’s something you’ll have to learn by attending one of his classes! Trust me, it’s well worth it. Why wouldn’t you invest in education for yourself?

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The tools and implements he would use to perform the haircut.

What haircut would he demo? Of course, one popular one that you’ll see at least 3 of done in a shop: A zero fade with a sidepart/undercut/hardpart/combover/name that ‘do.

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Full attendance ready to learn!

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Demonstrating one of many ways to set a guideline.

Throughout the demo, questions were asked, and where I could shoot my feedback, I would. I also asked a few questions that the class wouldn’t have asked, but felt it were something that would benefit them. I mean, hey, I’m here to help in any way I could!

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Can’t be a Hattori Hanzo class without using some Hattori Hanzos!

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Quick before and after!

After the demo was finished, the salon cleared out and there were 6 stylists left for the hands-on learning portion of the class. Now I could help out a bit more!

For the most part, it went smoothly. Obviously, getting a hairstylist that is only comfortable doing scissor-over-comb to go as short as 000 was a mission! Hell, getting their clients to get comfortable with them going that short was a task in itself! But, with all learning experiences, it’s something you have to ease into. Definitely glad that a majority of them were up for the challenge. But the hard part? Was not having the right tools to perform the cuts!

Now, a lot of stylists usually have an Oster 76 with only a handful of blades, or the familiar Wahl Designers. But not everyone in the class had the tools on hand, or the right blade, or guards. So, for some of them, a bit of improvising was done. Others had to borrow blades from others. And getting them to be comfortable with handling the clippers was something that took a bit of getting used to. But hey, we’re here to learn.

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The overall experience of teaching someone how to cut hair was a blast. It makes me kind of wish I were able to have my own classes! But, that’s something that’ll happen later down the line!

Having people willing to drop everything they know and do what you tell them to do made the experience that much easier. You’re usually met with rhetorical or backhanded questions whenever you try .to “teach” an existing stylist how to cut hair a certain way. It’s a given… You have people who have been doing something one way for several years, it’s not like you’ll be able to change their views on haircutting in one go. But, once you let them know that 2+1=3 as is 1+1+1=3, they’ll get it and become a little more welcoming to learning a new trick or two.

Big thanks again to Chris aka Cream The Barber for the opportunity! I can’t wait to be cutting in his shop, where it’ll be like having a barbering class all day long!

Well folks, I hope some of you are excited to see me posting again. Trying to work in the time to blog, work full-time and be a father is a daunting task! But hey, it has to be done!

So stay tuned for more barbering related posts, backlogged pomade reviews, and more!

Until the next time…

POMP HARD!!

Barber Shop Update. 10/10/14

As most of you know, I’ve seen been cutting hair down in the Peninsula (20 minutes south of San Francisco) previously in Redwood City and now (currently) in Belmont. And for some of my San Francisco based clients, it wasn’t feasible to make the trek down to see me… which is perfectly understandable. But for those clients that have stuck with me through the transitions: I appreciate y’all! But… there’s some good news to be had!

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Starting October 21, I’ll be splitting my time from my Belmont location with the brand new barber shop in the Dogpatch district, Cream’s Barbershoppe, owned by none other than Chris Eliares. He was one of the barbers I worked with at the beginning stages of my career that helped me progress in this craft, so getting back into the swing of things alongside of him will only lead to more progression! I definitely can’t wait to be back up in San Francisco, cutting hair, no less!

For the time being, I will only be working on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, with the potential of being opened on Mondays given the demand.

So, if you’re one of my previous clients from San Francisco or looking for a barber in the San Francisco Bay Area, book an appointment with me at the new location. There’s some fun to be had! Book an appointment with me via email:

therebelrouser@yahoo.com

Other methods of booking an appointment will be updated in a later date.

Hope to see y’all soon.

Tales From The Barber Shop.

Earlier this evening as I was checking out my last client, I saw a gentleman walk past the shop and straight towards the salon next door. As my client walks out, he walks up to the door and asks, “are you guys still opened?” I tell him that, ‘I’m still in the shop, so why not.’

He walks in wondering what sort of decision he made by going into the barber shop as opposed to the salon next door (which was already closed.)

I tell him the differences between a barber and a cosmetologist, and break down that it’s like a metal worker versus a wood worker. Both use similar techniques to manipulate the pieces they are working on, but do so in a trade-specific manner. He starts to “get” what I’m getting at, and I further hip him to what I feel going to a barber shop provides for a man.

As the conversation progresses, he tells me that he YELPed three places to get his hair down… All of which were salons (which he was used to.) One was no more than 3/4 a mile from his house, which was closed by 5. He rolls up to our block, where there are two salons which are separated no more than 120 feet…Both of which are closed well before their advertised “closing” hours. He was surprised that out of the 3 shops he checked out, 2 of which should have been opened by the time he got there and were well closed, that the shop that closed the earliest (our shop which typically closes at 3 on Saturdays) was opened and willing to take in someone this late in the day without hesitation or showing declination of the quality of service… I joke with him that I didn’t get to take a lunch and that I had a Gatorade to sustain me… Wish I had brought a new jug of water at the very least!

While I finish off the haircut with the straight razor on the neckline and having him double check my work, he gets up and is enthused at the fact that someone was working as long as I was and was willing to keep going. After the boss made a joke about us charging $40 (n jest of the salons within the area charging similar prices) he puts $40 on the counter and looks at my boss and say, “See, I spent $40 on a haircut, because you got someone willing to work well after every one is closed… You got enough to get yourself something other than a Gatorade for lunch!” Well… something very similar along those lines, haha.

Moral of this story? Is that being a barber is more than giving someone a dope haircut, a skin-tight fade, or being booked out for two weeks striaght. It’s more than just a straight razor finish or a can of pomade, or one of those faux-gentlemen courtesy consultations. I don’t act prim nor proper to get people to enjoy sitting in my chair. You won’t get a white towel slung over my left forearm like a waiter or me presenting an open seat like a magician. Cut the bullshit, because that’s as authentic as the next shop half-way across the country putting on that same act to rise up getting an extra $5 in your tip. You’re getting what it is I, as a man, as a barber can offer… and that’s genuine human interaction, advice, shared experiences, a good laugh at a few jokes, finished off with a firm handshake and the knowing that you’ll be able to have that same experience in 2-4 weeks. What other place can you really get that?

Current Stomping Grounds.

For any and all trying to get a haircut by me:

I’m no longer cutting hair in Redwood City. Best wishes for the shop, and if you continue to get your hair cut there and not by me — no hard feelings. It’s a cool shop and I wish them the best. But, if you’re trying to find out here I’m putting hair on the floor…

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You can find me at Bushwackers Barber Shop in Belmont, 1024 Sixth Ave.

Email me or call the shop for an appointment!

TheRebelRouser@yahoo.com
(650) 592-9772 (shop number)

Hope to hear from y’all soon!

Pomp Hard.

One Year Later.

Last year, I got my barber’s license…

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Haven’t looked back…

Pomp Hard.

Barbering Updatte: 02/24/2014

Just quick update since some people aren’t quite aware of where I’m at to book an appointment with me:

Since the morning of 01/31/2014, I was no longer a barber at The Barber Lounge in San Francisco and haven’t had any further appointments in the shop for the following month, and have been cutting hair in Redwood City.

I would like to thank each and every one of my clients I have met and made through the shop. I know many of you tried to make appointments with me at the shop, though I am no longer there. It’s been an honor to have had the opportunity to give you the best possible haircut I could offer and have your patience and willingness to help me grow as a barber. It’s been a blast and I hope to eventually have each and every one of you back in the chair at somepoint.

At the moment, I am cutting hair full-time at Captain’s Skate & Barber Shop in Downtown Redwood City.

If any one of my previous clients in San Francisco are looking to make in-house or in-office haircut appointments, I schedule appointments on Tuesdays starting at 11. Cutoff time to book an appointment is 4, unless I’m already in the city tending to another client. A week in advance notice is preferred.

To book one of these appointments, email me at: therebelrouser@yahoo.com

Well, I hope that clears up any misconception as to where I’ve taken my barbering services to, as I’ve had several requests to book appointments at The Barber Lounge in San Francisco.

Until the next time…

Pomp Hard.

Captain’s Sk8 & Barber Shop!

As most of y’all know, I’m no longer at The Barber Lounge in San Francisco. I’ll be reviewing my “experience” shortly! Yeah, that’ll be fun!

Now that my time is freed up, I’ll be at Captain’s Sk8 & Barber Shop more frequently! The days on the board will be updated shortly. But, swing on by for a cut and kick back with a brew!

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Big thanks for all of the support with this slight transition!

Ten Signature Haircuts From Schorem Haarsnijder Em Barbier DVD!

Even before I got into barbering, I was a fan of Schorem Haarsnijder en Barbier. When looking for photos of classically cut hairstyles you’ll know when you’ve come across one of their signature cuts. Their attention to detail is second to none. So when I stepped into the world of barbering, I’ve done my best to uphold their standards – not only in terms of haircutting, but also the principles of being a barber. While I haven’t had the luxury of flying out to Rotterdam to experience thee experience, and be under the tutelage of these world class barbers, this is the next best thing. I’ve already watched the entire DVD once and I’ve already learned something new. With barbering, learning something new is something you can’t not do! I’m definitely glad to have something to help give me a better idea as to how they perform haircuts the traditional way. If you’re a barber or just a fan of Schorem Haarsnijder en Barbier, this DVD is a must have! Big thanks to the good folks at Schorem for taking the time to produce this DVD!

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Pomade Review: Admiral Supply Co.

First pomade review of the year!

Brett of Admiral hit me up back when I was ready to take the few steps away from barber school, test for my barber’s license, and step into a barber shop. And unfortunately, that frantic time frame meant I wasn’t able to get back to him! But, when a bit of free time opened up I shot him an email and with open arms sent out a jar of his pomade. This stuff came pretty quickly, considering he was shipping it up from San Diego. Now relocated back to San Francisco, I could only imagine how much quicker it would come to my doorstep! Or maybe met up at the bar? Who knows. But, without further adieu, let’s get to the pomade review!

A few pomade brands have taken to the glass jar packaging. In my opinion, it’s a real nice and classic touch. But, no other water-soluble brands have went in this direction…

Admiral comes in a nice amber glass jar with a silver tin lid. A clean and simple style of package can go a long way. And the fact that you can use these jars for something else after you’re done with the pomade? And chances are, you’ll have a few empty ones? Man… You can’t beat that!

The labeling on the jar is clean, simple, effective, and most of all… proper.

Seamlessly printed onto the jar, the white Laurel wreath and anchor logo is perfectly centered on the jar, as well as the ingredient list and barcode. To add a bit of color-flare to the mix, a red and white trim sticker is placed on top of the silver lid. Like other brands with similar packaging (but plastic,) the hint of red really makes the packaging pop.

Twisting off the lid, you get a nice whiff of coconut. Now, personally, I hate coconut… Don’t you dare place no damn Mounds in my Halloween candy sack! Fortunately, this stuff isn’t too pungent, so the aroma of coconut doesn’t bother me one bit, instead its subtleties is rather pleasant.

Sorry, no picture of the pomade in the tin, I got too excited to use it on a client!

Scooping this stuff out is different than most water-soluble pomades. Rather than feeling like a gel, this stuff comes out feeling really creamy. It may be the hint of beeswax in it, but to the touch this stuff feels really nice, and you can tell it’ll apply evenly and smoothly. But, how does that affect the hold?

I tried this stuff on several clients of varying hair textures and it held their pomps up with no problem! Take a look:

Alex

Ed

Both of these clients have very dense and straight hair. Alex’s hair is a bit thicker than Ed’s, so seeing how this stuff works for both of these guys is pretty cool. Remember, the density of your hair is going to make a huge difference in terms of what hairstyle will work for you… Of course, depending on your barber or stylist – they should be able to work their “magic” with your hair and help you achieve various looks depending on your desires…

In terms of wavy hair, I found that this stuff won’t get the hair the straightest, since it isn’t the heaviest water-soluble pomade around, but decent enough to style up a smooth pomp without the waves kicking left and right.

With or without blowdrying, you’ll be able to comb up a nice tall pomp or a lower-profiled side-part. The way this stuff holds and sticks together is real nice. Like I said, it has a creamy feel to it as you scoop it out, which applies to how it’ll hold the hairs together, even the little ones that like to stick out!

As most water-soluble pomades go, this stuff has very little to no sheen and does harden (especially with a lot of water in the hair.) But, I noticed it doesn’t get crunchy… Get the difference? The sitff-crunchiness of water-soluble pomades is definitely a turn-off for many, while the hardening can be easily excused. And by that, I mean that when you run your fingers through the hair after it hardens, the now “messed up” hair feels relatively soft and not crunchy… Makes sense? I hope so! I applied this stuff to myself with dampened hair and noticed that it didn’t stiffen like some other gel-type pomades did, but hard enough to give it a solid hold throughout the day without the worry of it splitting apart. Pretty nice, yeah?

This Admiral impressed me. With an overall clean and simple product, this stuff would definitely suit several shops and individuals. The packaging: as I said, is great. The scent: not overbearing like most coconut scented pomades. The pomade: light enough to work smooth finishes with thicker hair, yet, thick enough to hold up finer hair. The product as a whole: a great addition to any personal collection or shop looking to add some diversity (in terms of packaging as well as product type.)

Big thanks again to Brett for shooting me some of his dope pomade! Look forward to meeting you in the near future!

Until the next time, folks…

Pomp Hard!

Product Review: Andis T-Outliner & GTX Outliner.

First review of the year!

In addition to my first clipper review, I figured instead of reviewing another clipper right off the bat, I’d review a trimmer, so the up-and-coming barbers have a better idea as to the variations of tools they’ll need. Pretty damn helpful, if I do say so myself…

So next up, I’ll be reviewing one of the most popular trimmers by Andis, the T-Outliner, as well as the GTX version. What are the exact differences? Keep reading to find out!

Andis is definitely one of the top brands used by barbers. Chances are, if your barber isn’t using an Andis adjustable clipper or detachable, they’re definitely using one of their liners! From my short, yet, pretty consistent career in barbering, I’ve found my preference in trimmers to be with Andis. While I do have some by Wahl, I end up using my trimmers from Andis a whole lot more often and have several kinds. But, today we’re focusing on the T-Outliners, so let’s stick to it!

The typical T-Outliner you’ll find in stores or online is the one with the grey body and maroon flip switch. There’s also the Outliner II which has the square blade, but I’ve gotten used to maneuvering the corners of the T-blade well enough, that I’m not in dire-need of the square blade. But, it’s all preference. The GTX is part of their Experience line, which has very slight yet noticeable differences between the general line and the Experience line.

Body wise: They are identical in every which way…

One difference you’ll notice between the normal liner and the GTX liner is the blade. While identical in-terms of T-blade or square blade, the teeth on the stationary blade is a lot deeper on the GTX blade. This is supposed to allow a better/cleaner feed of hair through to the cutting blade, which is supposed to cut longer hairs a lot smoother without leaving such a blunt cut. And paired with a powerful magnetic motor, you’ll get just that!

The reason I’m more inclined to use this type of trimmer as opposed to Wahl, is because of the motor. Personally, I’ve preferred the cut of magnetic motored trimmers as opposed to the rotary motored trimmers Wahl offers. And if you’ve read my first clipper review, you’ll know my stance on rotary motor clippers! But, magnetic motor trimmers do get hotter, and quicker, so take that into consideration. If you’re new and are taking your time when cleaning the outline of a haircut, check the heat of the blade so you aren’t searing your client by the time you switch sides. This is why you’ll typically see 2-3 of this style trimmer at a barbers station. (As well as blade adjustments, of course, but that’s a post its own.)

I find the strokes to be a lot more powerful and consistent… something a female has yet to tell me… Sigh… in due time… But, sometimes, the strength of the motor isn’t always the case… Sometimes you gotta go in DEEP! Yet another thing a female has yet to tell me… Sigh… in another lifetime, I suppose… [Innuendos end here.]

On my grey T-liners, I’ve adjusted the blade so that the moving blade sits up closer to the stationary blade. Since it doesn’t have the deeper teeth, the feed of hair is very short and not very precise. Having moved the blade forward, I’ve gotten cleaner and more consistent linings. While I don’t mind the way the stock deep-toothed blade cuts, I feel that I’d be a bit more satisfied with a slightly adjusted blade. We’ll play things out and see how it goes!

Since I did adjust my blades, it does mean the moving blade is that much closer to the clients skin! If you’re looking to adjust your liners in the same manner that I did, be careful! If you aren’t cautious, you’ll potentially leave a client with a neckline like this:

Note: This isn’t my haircut nor my mistakes. This is a customer that came in to get his haircut fixed and have what the fuck happened to him figured out! This was his first haircut in America! That’s not how it should be done… Here’s his haircut┬ápost Rebel Rouser…

This is the results of a trimmer that’s poorly adjusted and pressed too deeply into a clients nape! This is something you don’t want! You need to take note of both the teeth overlapping or not, as well as the angle you’d hold the clipper post-adjustment. If they’re adjusted and are cutting smoothly straight on, but a slight 15* change in angle may still be cutting too close to the skin. I’ve adjusted several blades throughout barber school as well as in the barber shop, but that doesn’t mean I’m a pro! So don’t just dive in and move your blades around without proper research and testing it on yourself. My thing is, if it hurts your then it’ll definitely hurt anyone in your chair!

Also, if you’re a heavy-handed barber, be very careful with adjusted liner blades, as even too much pressure may cause irritation…

Another difference between the T-Outliner and the GTX edition, is the cord. The GTX has a 3-pronged plug and a much thicker cord. I do feel a bit more of a kick when I flip the switch, but haven’t noticed if it’s the power that changes the cut or the blade.

The thicker cord does add some extra weight to the clipper. It’s surprising how much weight is added to the clipper, making it seem a bit more hefty in your hand than the usual liner. Not a bad thing, as I don’t mind the slight difference, but it’ll definitely take some getting used to. But if you’re a beefcake-heavy-handed barber, it should feel no different-than a triple cheeseburger.

Andis trimmers are my overall favorite trimmers on the market. I just prefer the magnetic motor on them over the rotary trimmers. I find myself going back to “Old Faithful” whenever I feel like having a crispier outline finish, and it never does me any wrong! I’d definitely suggest these trimmers over most on the market for barbers, or even at-home use for facial and neckline clean ups. But, remember, if you’re looking to adjust the blades on your clipper, do your homework first, so you don’t get people crying and bleeding in your chair! Check out the Andis T-Outliner and all of it’s variations, and find out which is the one for you to add to your barbering arsenal!

Now, is the price-point of the GTX liner warranted over the general T-Outliner? That’s dependent on you… They do offer a black version of the T-Outliner, but if you’re looking to pair it with a deep-tooth blade, then you’re pretty much paying the same amount. Do your homework and look for the shops that have the best prices, you can never go wrong with a well priced clipper or trimmer!

Alright, folks. I hope y’all enjoyed my second clipper/trimmer review, and the first one of the year! I hope this helps out you newer barbers, and was entertaining enough for you non-barbers! Until the next time, folks.

Pomp Hard!