It’s International Women’s Day, and we thought what better way to celebrate than with a quick Q&A session with our very own female barber Sammy. But before that, here’s a brief history about why we celebrate International Women’s Day in the first place.
Initially, an idea that started in the early 1900s America to end poor working conditions, it’s a day that celebrates women and tries to bring greater equality to the world. In today’s modern society it’s just as big an issue now as it was then. However, in today’s world, it’s become a global event with all kinds of people marking the occasion. On that note, we’ll hand over to Sammy on her thoughts of working as a modern woman in a male-heavy industry.
1) Happy International Women’s Day Sammy. Tell us a bit about yourself. You used to work as a hairdresser in Cambridge before training with Gents of London Barber Academy over three years ago. What was it about barbering that you attracted you in the first place?
“Being a barber has become a pretty cool thing to do nowadays. The idea of coming to London in 2015 to train was an exciting idea for me, but learning a new skill too was the tipping point. Cutting women’s was fun but while at hairdressers I found doing short women’s hair or the odd gent cut would be even more fun, and I could be more creative too. I was chuffed to bits when I was offered a job at Gents of London Barbershop and have never really looked back.”
2) As a female barber, are there advantages or disadvantages of working in a male-dominated industry, with all male colleague and 99% male clients?
“There are more pluses than minuses, for sure. With my previous hairdressing experience, I’m able to work with much longer hair that perhaps some barbers don’t work with on a day to day basis. So that does give me a slight edge bringing my hairdressing skills with me. I also feel like some clients open up more about their lives while the haircut is taking place. I can’t explain why maybe it’s a macho thing with their male barbers.”
4) Gents of London Barbershop recently started its own range or styling products. Is there a particular product that you prefer to use when finishing a haircut and why?
“I absolutely love the Gents of London Sea Salt Spray. It adds a decent amount of volume when blow-drying to create a nice natural finish. I generally use it on most clients before blow drying and then maybe add in a little matt Gents of London Carbon Clay for some additional separation, which smells amazing may I add. But the Sea Salt Spray is my hero product of choice.”
5) And finally, Gents of London Barbershop is famous for its music playlist. In the spirit of International Women’s Day which tracks or artist by inspiring female singers would you recommend?
“Firstly, I genuinely love all the music on the playlist. I know everyone would expect me to say that but I really do. As far as women on the playlist go anything by Dusty Springfield and Aretha Franklin is pure gold. But I’d also like to mention the XX, Gwen McCrae, and Wolf Alice as being personal favourites of mine”