Guest Blog – Blake Boswell
04 Aug 2021
Written by mike
One of our clients, Blake Boswell runs a successful barber and hairdresser – The Trichologist and Hair by the Looking Glass. We caught up with him on the decision to open the barber shop dedicated to creating a relaxation haven for men.
“There tends to be some stigma around men visiting the barbershop/salon. When compared to female self-care options that include manicures, blowdry’s, facials etc. we notice a difference. Whilst we have progressed a lot in recent years towards men feeling more comfortable to treat themselves and visit the salon, there’s still a long way to go.
That was our thought process when setting up The Trichologist. We wanted to create a space that was inviting and open for our guests. The idea being that they can come in to socialise, re-energise and forget about their troubles for an hour. Pre Covid-19, we would invite guests to come to the salon a while before the salon to relax and unwind.
In our opinion, it’s no longer enough to provide a simple service. Clients want an experience and you need to set yourself apart from the competition. At The Trichologist we have a play station, televisions showing football matches and a designer clothing boutique. We have a beer tap on hand for all guests to receive a complimentary draft beer or soft drink of their choice to make them feel at home. Little touches like this create that welcoming environment that we wanted. It encourages our male clients to come into the salon some time before their appointment (pre-covid) and take time out. It encourages them to interact with the team and other guests as the different areas provide talking points. This is where the feeling of escapism comes in. Our mental health is so precious and more fragile than ever following the pandemic. It’s not as normalised for men to treat themselves and take that ‘me time’. That’s exactly what we want to change. Why shouldn’t guys be able to kick back in the salon for an hour and forget their worries for that time?
As we opened just before the pandemic and lockdown hit, we were worried about how successful the business could be. Thankfully we are booked up over a week in advance via our online booking system with iSalon and we accept zero walk in’s. As we use iSalon’s SMS reminder service too it gives our clients something to look forward to for the following day. We are pretty happy with that, all things considered. Our initial success has reinforced our feeling that there is a need for that open space for men to step into and escape for a while. It’s time to reduce the stigma around male self-care.”
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