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Top Barbers Provide Tips for Managing Hair During Lockdown

Can you imagine how busy barbershops are going to be once the covid-19 lockdown is lifted? I expect there will be long queues and appointment waiting lists weeks or months long. Personally during quarantine I’m growing my hair out and using it as a good excuse to embrace the growth. The last time I grew my hair was during my 2nd year of university and I let it grow for a full year without any trims whatsoever. It was a frizzy, curly shoulder length mess, but it was a fun time I look back on fondly. MenswearStyle recently reported on all the best self-cut hair clippers on the market for all those guys that are brave enough to take it into their own hands. However, before you do anything with any hair clippers or scissors, here’s some expert advice from 4 of the best barbers in the industry right now.

Dan Davies Suggests Waiting it Out

“My advice to anyone wanting to cut their own hair is don’t do it. I’ve been cutting hair for twenty years and have never seen a great home haircut. There are some things that are just better left to the professionals. Instead try and embrace the new length that you have. Maybe try a part in the hair or comb the hair back. Hair grows on average 6” a year, so half an inch each month. No one knows how long we will be in lockdown for but when we all get through this and are wanting to look our best, it will be difficult to pull off any great look with a terrible haircut.” 


Dan Davies
Dan Davies

Pete Donoghue Recommends Doing it Yourself

“If you have to attempt a 'do it yourself haircut' at home, firstly prepare to go shorter than anticipated. Secondly, my ultimate top tip is; I strongly advise against asking your partner to help (they care far less about the outcome than they may say). Although tempting, another bit of solid advice is to not do it after your third pint... or any alcohol in fact. Once a beer or two has been consumed you may start to believe you have a natural talent for barbering (which is probably unlikely). Once the process is complete - take a quick shower - and once dried check for any areas you may have missed, then know when it's time to put the clippers down. Finally, don't worry too much about any little imperfections as a bit of Carbon Clay can hide a multitude of haircut related sins.” 


Pete Donoghue
Pete Donoghue

Carmelo Guastella’s 3 Simple Tips 

"We are living in unprecedented times and during self-isolation it’s very important to look after yourself. How your hair looks, whether people see it or not, can make you feel much better. My advice is to be patient, but if the lockdown is extended into summer, then follow these simple tips to help keep your hair in check. You will need some hair clippers, a comb, a pair of professional scissors and a mirror or two. These are just a few very basic ways to get you going for another 2/3 weeks. However, I would steer away from clippers to cut your own hair, unless you decide to do an all over grade buzz cut. I also feel this is a good time for men to move away from being creatures of habit and to experiment and embrace longer hair, rather than the usual short back and sides."


1. Neck hair: Another thing that keeps you looking fresh is clearing your neck of fuzzy hair with clippers. After about 3 weeks, especially if you have dark hair, you will look untidy. Yes, it’s not easy to do by yourself, but you could ask your partner of family member to help. 

2. Sideburns: Once these start to grow out they become straggly, so fit your clipper with the highest comb size and keep sizing down until you reach the length you want, then make a note of that length for next time. 

3. Hair creeping over the ears: Slightly wet your hair, comb down and cut with scissors around the ears without going too high. You’ll want to take your time with this one. If you hack into your hair by mistake, don’t worry too much as it will grow back. 


Carmelo Guastella
Carmelo Guastella

Samuel Hickey’s Do’s and Don’ts 

Do allow your hair to repair and relax. You needn’t style your hair everyday as most of us are no longer going to be client/customer facing. Not wearing hair product will stop your hair being pulled around with waxes, pomades, putties and creams. 

Don’t give in and shave it all off just yet. It’s only the end of week 2 of being on lockdown. We all might like to think we would look great with a shaven head and imagine ourselves looking like David Beckham or Wentworth Miller in Prison Break. Through personal experience, I ended up looking like a kiwi fruit. So don't just grab some clippers and hope for the best. 

Do take time to condition your hair. Men always forget to condition their hair as part of their grooming regime, so now we have no excuse with the extra time on our hands. You only need to condition twice a week maximum, so just add a little conditioner (about a 10p size) into your palm, massage into your scalp and wash out to aid strengthening and nourishment to your hair. 

Don’t grab any pair of clippers or scissors and automatically assume you will be a pro. I’ve had clients message me asking if they can tidy up their hair with a standard pair of kitchen scissors. We can all stand in front of the bathroom mirror and assume we will give ourselves a haircut that Vidal Sassoon would’ve been proud of. However, it’s more than likely that you will end up taking off too much. Little trims and light tidy-ups are allowed, but not too much. 

Do trim the loose hairs if necessary. Without much skill it’s okay to take off any loose ends, trim up sideburns, and tidy necklines. Anything more than this and you might end up causing a hair faux-pas and ending up with a wild haircut. 

Don’t be messaging your barber for a quick home haircut. Everyone is being extremely responsible at the moment and I can guarantee that 99.9% of barbers won’t be leaving their houses to do personal visit haircuts, however much we all love our jobs. 

Do wait to visit the barber again. All of us barbers will be so appreciative of our clients waiting for a haircut and coming back in for a proper haircut. We are all waiting to catch up with you, see what you got up to in lockdown and talk about your experiences. 


Samuel Hickey
Samuel Hickey

Johnny's Chop Shop Barbers Say Grow or Buzz 

"I’d suggest to anyone to either grow it or shave it off completely with a grade number 2. You can watch YouTube videos on how to buzz it off if you’re too scared to do it. You can also watch styling videos on how to maintain it. I’ve seen some bad haircuts that people have done themselves so I don’t want to advise you to fade it yourself!" - Toastie 

"My number one tip if you absolutely cannot wait to see your barber is either buzz cut it, especially if you are used to shorter styles, and are comfortable with that. Otherwise, buy a set of hair trimmers and clean up the edges around the ears, keeping it in line with the natural hair growth and basically just tidy it up all the way around the edges. If not, brave out the long cut and wear a hat. Job done." - Ben Haynes 


Ben Haynes
Ben Haynes

Craig Landale

Previously heading up digital marketing at a large UK menswear group, Craig steers the ship at Menswear Style and has a keen interest for sustainable brands, fashion startups and British manufacturing.

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