New businesses are popping up all over Nashville: One in particular is just for the guys, and men all over are flocking to the ‘new-age’ barber shops, but it’s not just for a haircut.
The barber shop has been around for ages, the trademark white-and-red-stripes, the cuts and the camaraderie. But there’s a new trend these days. “It’s more of a gentleman’s shop,” says Eric Miller, one of the owners of Nashville Beard and Barber. Miller and his business partner, Kevin Hagewood, opened the shop in November.
It’s a place where the old school barber shop meets the modern man. “You get a shampoo after your cut, you get a tailored cut, the shampoo, steam towel on the face, then a massage on the shoulders,” says Miller. Men can even get a mini-facial after, blackhead removal mask and all.
“Everything a man would want, coming to get pampered. The women have their salon and spas, and everything,” says Miller.
Some men may be skeptical at first, or even nervous at the idea of a ‘spa day.’ But Hagewood says that changes pretty fast. “When you lean them back you can kind of watch them kind of melt when you put the steam towel on.”
The reaction is always the same, according to Miller and Hagewood. “Never had an experience like this. Best haircut they had, best experience they’ve had,” says Miller.
Customers are catching onto the idea and lining up to be treated. “My philosophy has changed a lot on haircuts. I used to just go to Supercuts, your average franchise,” says Michael Lynn, a customer. “I think times have changed with guys being socially acceptable to take care of themselves.”
The man-cave feeling helps, with tool boxes to hold their utensils and whiskey barrels propping up sinks. “We wanted a real masculine-feel to it,” says Miller.
“They work hard and they deserve to play hard and also to relax,” says Hagewood.
Just as women get wine at the spa, whiskey comes with this manly treatment, as well as a TV in the bathroom.
Miller and Hagewood are serious about the experience, but they’re also passionate about giving back to East Nashville. The barbers line up and give haircuts and makeovers periodically to the homeless. “We got in over here (in East Nashville) and made it a home,” says Miller.
It’s a home where they will continue to pamper the patrons and give back to the needy. “I just feel so blessed this dream has come true,” says Hagewood.
Nashville Beard & Barber is located at 726 Mcferrin Avenue in East Nashville.
For more information, visit their website.
Follow-up: I put this place to the ultimate test…my husband and dad. Let’s just say they’ll be going back.