There’s a growing number of female barbers as industry finally sheds its “male only” tag

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A growing number of barbers in the UK are now female, exciting new figures from The Bluebeards Revenge male grooming brand have revealed.

The survey released ahead of International Women’s Day on 8 March shows nearly a quarter of UK barbers are now female—up from 10% in 2015.

The brand has attributed the rising numbers to increasing standards as well as changing attitudes towards gender equality.

Sophie Collins, a barbershop owner from north Wales and an official ambassador for The Bluebeards Revenge, said she was encouraged by the results and believed it is only matter of time before females make up half of all barbers.

As a female barber, Sophie, 28, has faced many challenges; some men not only didn’t want her to cut their hair, would mock her ability or even walk out of her barbershop when they realised she was a female.

Sophie, who was named the Best Wet Shaving Barber in Wales two in a row, said: “When I first started out on my barbering journey back in 2013 it was such a hard business for a female to break into because it was so male-dominated. The female barbers, unfortunately, that were successful five to six years ago were perhaps the good looking ones.

“I remember the days when men would walk into my barbershop, take one look at me and walk straight out in disgust. Fortunately, this has changed and men have moved on and are much more liberal and open-minded. The fact I’m a female has become irrelevant and it’s just accepted that I’m not a bloke.  

“I want to use my profile and success to inspire and encourage even more females into the industry, as it’s such a rewarding career path.”

Nick Gibbens, spokesperson for The Bluebeards Revenge, said the findings were hugely encouraging and showed how far the industry had come in recent years.

He said: “We have been working hard to promote gender equality in the industry and the signs are looking positive. There is still so much more to do but if the industry pulls together then I see no reason why these figures won’t continue to improve.”

Barbering is currently enjoying a remarkable renaissance in the UK and statistics show barbershops are outperforming beauty salons, nail bars and health clubs when it comes to opening the most retail stores.

The Local Data Company’s Retail and Leisure trend report 2017/2018 found barbershops also outgrew restaurants, bars, pizza takeaways, coffee shops and mobile phone stores.

These findings follow another survey from The Bluebeards Revenge which showed 95% of men still visit the high street to go to their barbershop or hairdresser. 

NUMBER OF FEMALE BARBERS IN THE UK
2015: 434 of 4,126 (10.5%)
2016: 679 of 4,561 (14.8%)
2017: 911 of 5,235 (17.4%)
2018: 1,087 of 5,786 (18.7%)
2019: 1,419 of 6,004 (23.6%)
Source: The Bluebeards Revenge (as of March 1, 2019)