Starbers: The Stars’ Barbers
No matter how long someone has been a barber, there is always some pressure to make a great first impression when cutting a new client’s hair. Factor in the fact that the client has millions of followers that are going to see your work, and that pressure might build. Then start thinking about the career-altering impact an endorsement from that client will have, and you might feel some sweat at the top of your brow the first time you cut a celebrity’s hair. Here’s a list of some notable celebrity barbers who have suffered through these kinds of nerves.
Richard Mendoza (@richthebarber)
Richard Mendoza got a call late one night from a fellow barber and friend telling him that one of his clients was on the road in desperate need of a cut from an expert. Mendoza had his tools in his car, so he pulled into the hotel parking lot, trimmed up the client and the next day, LA Clippers guard Austin Rivers stepped onto the Madison Square floor with a #cutbyrich.
Barbers are now flooding social media in droves, but Mendoza was one of the first to leverage the platform as a barber, shaving the New York City skyline into a client’s head and posting it to his MySpace account in 2006. The photo earned him thousands of new followers on the platform. Since then, Mendoza has implemented similar strategies to sustain and grow his brand in the current social media landscape to a level where he can count Big Sean, Travie McCoy, and Flo Rida as clients. Not bad for a kid who started cutting high school friends hair in his mom’s kitchen.
Paul Hewitt (@paulhewitt_aono)
The seaside UK town of Brighton isn’t at the top of the list of places to start a streetwear empire, but don’t tell Paul Hewitt that. Hewitt started his brand AONO (standing for always outnumbered never outgunned) there in 2011 by marrying his passions of barbering, tattoos, and streetwear.
Hewitt found creative solace and direction when he began his career as a barber. From early on, it was about art and individualism. Big names in music, skateboarding, and the punk culture community aligned with Hewitt’s outlook and have sought him either at one of the four AONO locations worldwide or at music festivals Hewitt attends to trim up concert-goers.
Jason Schneidman (@themensgroomer)
If you’ve ever been watching a Hollywood award show and thought, “Gosh, I wish I could get trimmed up by (insert famous male celebrity here)’s barber!” call The Men’s Groomer, and with the right amount of money you should be able to hop on Jason Schneidman’s waiting list. Schneidman is the man responsible for Bruno Mars’ iconic looks, Jonah Hill’s trims, James Corden’s Late-Night-ready hair, and so many more.
Schneiderman got his start cutting friends’ hair after long days of surfing. He then got a chair at the famed Chris McMillan Salon, and from there, steadily built a reputation for his men’s haircuts and shomanship. Today, his most recent acclaim comes from bringing back Italian curls, but what seems more important to Schneiderman is that he still enjoys the craft, flipping spray bottles, adding flourishes to his shaves, and all the while loving being a barber.