Cover Girl, April 2017
I would like to think every barber has the same mindset as me. That they want to make their career as successful as it can be. Whether thats cutting hair for the pure joy of doing what you love, training barbers and sharing your knowledge, managing a team without the massive stress and responsibility of owning a barbershop, or taking the plunge and doing just that. In my opinion, and as I said in my previous blog post, I felt I had no choice but to open my own.
It was in October 2016, 11 months since first opening the doors to CB Co., when Editor and Founder Rachel Gould contacted me about appearing in Modern Barber Magazine. I'd had a couple of entries before in the past, only small columns, sharing some knowledge about the industry. when I opened the message, I instantly thought it was a joke. She'd asked me to be on the Cover of April 2017's addition, titled, "Skill has no Gender." I asked, 'why me? I'm a nobody'. I could sense she felt sad from my reaction. These magazines have all the top, most famous barbers from all around the world on the front. So someone like me, a small, inexperienced barbershop owner from Shirley, who was quite frankly winging it at the time, in my opinion, didn't deserve to be featured.
Rachel explained to me that I should be brave, confident, and remember who the hell I am. That I've worked damn hard to be here and that I deserve good things like this to happen to me. This issue covers all genders, but has a quiet aim to spotlight female barbers and how they can easily get looked past in favour of a male barber. Modern Barber Magazine goes out to 10,000 barbershops in the UK & Ireland alone. And for mine to be the face for all female barbers out there is such a huge honour.
We live in a very male dominated industry and there is now more competition than ever since the 'Barbershop Boom.' There are more barbershops than ever right now, and with the ratio of 2 female barbers to 10 male, this issue seemed very fitting to me and my past history of never being taken seriously due to my gender. I was more than happy to accept the offer. Rachel and her Photographer came from Northampton and shot the images of me in my barbershop one rainy Sunday. Looking back, I wish I had worn a different top and did something else with my hair but hey, life is a learning curve. I was young, inexperienced and very naive. Now when I look back at that image, it reminds me of how far I've come. How much I've pushed myself, researched, paid out, committed and learned. How many friends I've made. How far my barbershop has come. How far my team has come.
Fast forward a few years and life is so good now. Ive learned to put all of those past, negative memories in a box to the back of my mind. Sometimes they come out to torment me. I am only human after all. but I now try my best to channel that energy into making myself, my team and my barbershop even bigger and better. I am grown enough to know nothing worth having comes easily and that I can use my past experiences to help my team members grow. To treat them fairly and with compassion and love. I now have the most talented barbers working by my side. They know they are not better or lesser than me. We are all equal! We all pull together and work extremely hard to keep respecting each other, our clients and the Barbershop and keeping our standards high. I know my team appreciate that, along with some gentle guidance, more than anything.
This, and with being a Cover Star for the most prestigious Barbering magazine on the planet, makes getting up everyday an absolute doddle.