You’re in a new city and away from your typical barber, yet you find yourself in sudden need for a fresh cut. How do you know who to trust with your hair?

Sure, you could try and do some Googling for well-respected barbers, but there’s really no need. When you pay attention to certain things, it’s easy to judge the worthiness of a barbershop.

Here are a few ways you can tell you’re in the right place.

  • The easiest way to tell if a barbershop is worth its salt is to see how difficult it is to get an appointment there. If you can get an appointment same day for a popular time (after the office crowd gets out of work or during lunch), it’s likely the shop isn’t well-liked by the locals. If the shop doesn’t take appointments, that’s not necessarily a bad sign. As long as it’s busy.
  • Notice how long customers are spending in the chair as you’re waiting for your cut. If they’re out in 15 minutes, there’s a good chance the customers are not getting the best treatment. When it comes to haircuts, a slow, methodical cut beats a quick hasty one every time.
  • It may seem trivial, but things like shop decor and friendliness of staff counts. When a shop pays attention to the details in these areas, it can indicate that it pays attention in others too (like your hair).
  • During a haircut is also an important time to pay attention. Though it may be too late this time, you can decide whether or not you’ll be back. Did the barber secure your cape correctly? Did they ask you how you wanted your haircut? Did they follow your instructions at all? If the answer is no to any of these questions, you probably shouldn’t make it your regular shop.

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