Interview with Daryl Birkby, an award-winning barber and co-owner of Prestige Salon in Lancaster with 12 years experience.
What celebrity do people like to emulate the most when they come to get their hair done?
The most common face we see on pictures is David Beckham, however, his hair style has changed many times over the years, so it isn’t one particular look. We also have a lot of Asian students in the salon that tend to show us images of people from popular Asian culture (mainly K-pop boybands).
What is the most timeless or iconic hairstyle?
For me, the most timeless hairstyle is a classic side parting. It can be worn with shorter sides through the summer and paired with a well fitted suit or longer messier unkempt hair on days where you don’t want to spend long maintaining a certain style
What is your inspiration in the hair industry?
For the last few years, I have closely followed Menspire Salon. Their work is exceptional and the business model they have is impressive. The work they produce is the perfect blend of traditional barbering techniques combined with contemporary hairdressing skills. This is something I try to offer having had many years’ experience in both aspects of the hair industry.
What is the most memorable moment of your career?
My most memorable moment has to be getting the keys to Prestige. At just 22, I was just a young barber and Shane, my business partner, was still relatively new in the business world. We had a lot to learn but it was an exciting prospect and we knew there was a gap in the market that could be filled.
What advice would you give to a budding stylist?
Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and always strive to learn new things. Even at 30 years old I continue to watch YouTube/Instagram because I want to be the best I can be
How have you seen the industry change shape over the past few years?
Instagram has played a huge part in the way that Barbers are seen. It has become a cool profession and it has never been easier to showcase your work and to gain a following. The male grooming market has risen exponentially over the last 5 years or so with several other barber shops opening in Lancaster & Morecambe (none as good as Prestige, obviously).
How do you know if someone is going to suit their new style or colour?
My consultation process is always very similar. I ask particular questions to my clients to figure out the best style for them: 1. How often do you get your hair cut? 2. When did you last have your hair cut? 3. Do you spend time styling your hair every day/ what is your process? 4. Is there anything you don’t like about your hair?
From these answers I can usually suggest a style that is going to be suitable and manageable for everyone.
What’s one mistake everyone makes with their hair?
Applying too much product! In the words of @andrewdoeshair “good hair doesn’t come from a jar”. It’s all about the time spent on your hair before you apply any finishing products such as wax. (If you don’t dry your hair in a certain direction, 9 times out of 10 it won’t go that way with some wax). We will be adding some styling tips tutorials to our Facebook and Instagram so keep an eye out for those
What do you foresee as the top hair trends in 2020?
Personally, I would like to see more longer styles in men’s hair. I really like that messy ‘just got out of bed’ look but not many people can pull it off. Also, a lot more guys are starting to experiment with colour so I imagine that will continue to be more popular throughout the year
BY: ISSUE, Lancaster University Fashion Society