BarberEVO Magazine

Be part of the Barber EVOlution

UK & Ireland News

L’Oréal Professionnel premiers virtual hair looks and enters the Metaverse in partnership with Ready Player Me

Today, L’Oréal Professionnel, the pioneering hair brand and trusted partner of hair stylists since 1909 becomes the first to create virtual hair looks for cross-gaming avatars.

In partnership with Ready Player Me, the world-leader in avatars for multi-app use, and working with 3-D artist Evan Rochette, L’Oréal Professionnel releases the first in a series of hairstyles for users to curate their personal avatar and push the boundaries of self-expression. Five textured hair looks are available to enable gamers express themselves. Making interconnected virtual worlds a reality, avatars created on Ready Player Me are compatible with more than 4,000 games, platforms and apps globally.

“For more than 110 years, L’Oréal Professionnel has put its pioneering spirit at the service of hairstylists, to develop the professional hair industry and elevate the expression of hair beauty in the world, “ says Anne Machet, L’Oréal ProfessionnelGlobal General Manager.

“We see this exciting partnership with Ready Player Me as a meaningful way to continue our journey in the virtual world. We cannot wait to push technical and creative boundaries to provide the community with limitless hair expression possibilities.”

“L’Oréal Professionnel’s hair styles are an amazing addition to the Ready Player Me platform”, said Timmu Tõke, CEO & Co-Founder of Ready Player Me.”

“We couldn’t be more excited to partner with the L’Oréal Group and bring their avatar customization options to our avatar creator and all apps and games compatible with Ready Player Me, including Spatial, HiberWorld, and VRChat.”

After the first five Ready Player Me looks, L’Oréal Professionnel will continue to build a bridge between hair pros and CG artists next year to develop hair beauty and self-expression in the virtual world.

Follow us all year long. @LorealPro #LorealPro #LorealProMetaverse

The Hair and Barber Council are Extremely Concerned with the Effect The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement will have on our Sector

With the sector still trying to recover from the covid lockdowns, the current cost of living crisis and the mayhem of the mini budget, many of our members are seriously worried about the future of their businesses.

UK salons are the main occupier of high streets up and down the UK (46,210) and the Autumn Budget released on 17th November has done nothing but levy a further cost rise on employers in the sector who already struggle to meet wage bills due to loss of trade following the Covid lockdowns and since the mini budget.  A forced NMW increase of 9.7/10.9% plus employer oncosts will most certainly force the industries underground market to expand even further.

Employers in the industry are the ones sinking fast! With only 33% of workers in the industry now “employed”, and the only ones likely to be paying VAT are now also weighted down with increasing high energy costs and again MORE employment costs.

Every employer believes their employees deserve more, but the Government has naively levied an increase on a sector that is trading in a two-tier business model with employers now losing the race.  Employers want to retain staff, invest, grow and develop their businesses but they have not even had a chance to trade out of covid with many still not back to 2019 revenues, yet costs continue to rise at an unsustainable level.

Apprenticeships jobs already at risk from the pandemic and lack of Government support means this now forced wage increase will result in many 16–18-year-olds losing their apprenticeships, potentially forcing them onto benefits. 

The industry is not regulated so there is no consumer protection in place to protect the public from rogue traders who have never trained or qualified in the industry. The consequence of Government choices has now increased what was already an endemic problem in the industry. The Hair and Barber Council are constituted by the 1964 Hairdressing Act with qualified professional hairdressers and barbers able to voluntarily register with the Council, but the mass of rogue traders will continue to plough trade in our sector forcing the entire industry in a race to the bottom.  Once regulated the sector would be managed by industry experts and professionals who have worked in the sector for many years. 

The Hair and Barber Council URGENTLY needs the following support to help it to survive and prosper.:

  • Suspend business rates to help with high energy costs – include the personal care sector and give 75% discount or 100% to high street salons/barbers. 
  • Give the sector a VAT cut and level up the playing field  
  • Introduce HMRC time to pay for industries still plagued with covid debt from pandemic lockdowns they did not choose. 
  • Support Apprenticeship costs for salon employers with an Apprenticeship furlough type scheme to SAVE JOBS. 
  • Convert BBL/CBILS for small businesses locked down to grants. 
  • HM Treasury to meet with The Hair & Barber Council and other organisations to deal with critical issues plaguing the industry. 
  • Government to pay SSP for small employers as all are still impacted by covid absence 
  • Make regulation mandatory to stop rogue traders, protect consumers and our professional sector.

For more information please contact;

Oway UK Announces Simon Tuckwell as UK Creative Director

Leading Italian haircare brand, Oway is delighted to announce Simon Tuckwell, owner of Tuckwell & Co in Nottingham as the brand’s new UK Creative Director. 

Earth, glass and aluminium is where the Oway story first began in 1948, in Bologna, Italy. one of the most beautiful cities in the world, After a lengthy research process in the early 1990s, they embarked on a mission to create hair products using organic extracts, cementing the ethos of the Oway brand we know today. In order to bring change to the industry, Oway chose to give up classic chemical ingredients and undertake a journey of true green revolution and a natural pace towards real sustainability to support their commitment to protecting the planet. 

Now, the Oway Manifesto is the perfect visual representation of the brand’s values and the benefits they bring to your salon with each and every cut, colour and style.

From growing and cultivating ingredients with the least environmental impact to developing sustainable packaging, this Manifesto represents the conscious choice and purposeful action your salon takes to change the industry for the better. 

In 2010 Oway became biodynamic farmers and created Ortofficina, a place to grow herbs and plants in the most earth friendly way by distilling them directly for use in their products. By 2013 plastic was out, replaced by glass and aluminium, both fully recyclable and protective materials. 

Earth, glass and aluminium – the agricosmetica circle, a constantly evolving path, which shapes and reshapes an authentic and conscious lifestyle. A value shared by new Creative Director Simon Tuckwell:  

“I’m delighted to be working with Oway UK as their UK Creative Director. For me, it just felt like Oway was the perfect fit for the Tuckwell & Co brand, ethically and aesthetically. The support from day one has been second to none. Having that real close and personal relationship with a brand is key for me. I look forward to growing our relationship in the coming years and I’m excited for what’s to come. The products are extremely popular with both my team who love the performance they deliver and our clients who constantly comment on the scent and feel.”

NHBF Calls on the Chancellor to Protect the Hair & Beauty Sector

The National Hair & Beauty Federation (NHBF) has urged the new Chancellor, the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, to adopt a six-point plan to protect the hair & beauty sector.

The NHBF argues that that hair & beauty is experiencing a ‘cost of doing business’ crisis, with energy and business costs escalating, inflation at 10% and consumer confidence falling. This is paired with a sector skills crisis undermining the ability of businesses to recruit both entry level apprentices and experienced staff. Commercial rents are also rising and businesses could pay more through business rates after revaluation in spring 2023.

The six-point plan asks for:

  1. Continued support on energy bills.

The Energy Bill Relief scheme is a vital lifeline for many sector businesses. The array of services offered by the sector are underpinned by energy usage; for 64% of businesses, energy represents their first or second largest outgoing. These costs have increased by over 40% for half of businesses, with some experiencing increases of 300-400% or more. There is a ticking time bomb for a third of businesses who will see their energy contract renewals coming up over the next 3-6 months and risk paying significantly higher prices.

Business need further support on energy bills beyond March 2023 and energy companies should be encouraged to offer a range of flexible payment plans so that businesses are supported to pay off bills over a longer period of time.

  1. Continued support on business rates.

The NHBF has called for the 50% business rates discount continued into the 2023-24 financial year. If government finances allow, then 100% business rates relief as envisaged with Investment Zones would be invaluable and very welcome across the UK.

  1. Nurturing the next generation of talent.
  • Financial incentives for small and medium businesses to employ 16–18-year-old apprentices: The future of the sector depends on an influx of 16-18 apprentices. Funding could be channelled to fund apprenticeships to enable training providers to train and employers to take on apprentices, making the apprenticeship more viable and affordable for businesses through an incentive of £3,000 per apprentice.
  • Financial incentives for SMEs who hire apprentices aged 19 or over: There has been a flood of older learners wanting to train in the sector, however the National Minimum Wage (NMW) or apprentices’ wage restriction have prevented this. Learners are unable to contribute to the business’s income until they are qualified and insured, so the increase in their costs after the first-year acts as a deterrent to employers. First year incentives would help support taking on apprentices aged 19+ by bridging the gap between the apprentice wage and the minimum wage. 

These incentives could be funded by restructuring the Apprenticeship Levy so that more small businesses could benefit from a redistribution of the fund

In the Careers at the Cutting Edge report, the NHBF estimated the cost of these initiatives, which would be a fraction of the £2 billion currently unspent.

  1. Restraint on rises to National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage.

The Government will soon be announcing its response to this year’s recommendations from the Low Pay Commission on the National Minimum Wage (NMW) and National Living Wage (NLW) rates. Given the severely challenging economic environment and looming recession, the NHBF asked for restraint and for any rises to take account of business survival and the ability of businesses to employ.

  1. A fairer tax system.

The NHBF has called for a fairer approach to the tax system to create a more level playing field between businesses with employees and businesses using self-employed individuals.  This includes raising the VAT threshold so that more small and micro businesses benefit from relief, reducing the VAT rate to 5% or introducing tiered rates for the smallest businesses to remove the disincentive to grow and remain below the threshold.

  1. Crackdown on tax evading businesses.

The NHBF also called on the Government to target resources for a crackdown on informal businesses operating on a cash basis in the margins, failing to declare earnings, not paying tax or VAT, which means they charge lower prices, undercutting and threatening the survival of responsible businesses and undermining minimum wage legislation.

Richard Lambert, NHBF chief executive says, “Hair & beauty businesses are desperate for some economic stability so they can plan for and be confident in their future. The revolving door at the Department for Business has seen four different Personal Care ministers pass through it in the past four months. We still don’t know who in government will be looking after our sector-specific needs – just as the latest GDP figures show that hairdressing in particular is one of the industries hardest hit by the current financial situation.  The targeted investment we propose will, in the medium to long term, tgenerate more revenue in taxes, as well as increasing business growth and employment opportunities.”


Mobile Barbers were Begged to Break Law During Lockdown

Giuliano Dore, the owner of Get Groomed talks about how he was begged to break the law during lockdown.

The creator of a mobile barber website has revealed people were begging him to break the law during the lockdown and were asking for him to send a barber to their homes to give them a haircut.

Giuliano Dore, founder of Get Groomed, said: “We learned that a lot of people were trying to have haircuts regardless of a law stating that they couldn’t, which came as a surprise.

“We received so many messages each day from people wanting one of our barbers to come to their homes with us telling them: “It’s not going to work. It’s not possible. We can’t do that”.

“Although, we couldn’t satisfy their requests, as a young business it was great to know our website was making its mark and that promised good times ahead once the restrictions were over.”

Giuliano said the website, launched in London in 2017, was now back in full swing and expanding nationwide with new services in the West Midlands and Greater Manchester, and existing services in London, Kent and Guildford.

“At the end of the third lockdown in April 2021, we able to fully reopen, albeit with very strict restrictions, and we were astonished at the response,” he added.

“Within 24-hours we saw a real spike in bookings, including a demand for haircuts, beard restyling and luxury shaves, which was so heartening after all the quarantine restrictions.

“Many of our clients told us they were opting for our at-home service to avoid being exposed to the virus in crowded barbershops and happily have stayed with us ever since.

“We also have a number of businesses looking for ways to attract workers back into the office who have started holding events where we set up mobile barbershops in the workplace.”

The Get Groomed website was founded by Giuliano and product manager Sabrina Vjaykumar.

For further information visit:

Hair & Beauty Takes Seasonal Battering

The hair & beauty sector is once again at the frontline of the impact of the current economic instability, with a drop in the proportion of businesses saying that they are confident of their survival at 49%, down from 64% in July, as reported in the results from the latest National Hair & Beauty Federation (NHBF) State of the Industry survey. 

These businesses have battled through the last two years and seen two periods of initial recovery in September 2021 and July 2022, but this latest set of results shows the fragility of the recovery.

Escalating energy costs, business supplier and staff costs have brought growth to a screeching halt. Sector businesses find themselves once again dealing with a set of survival challenges. Declining consumer confidence has meant that a sense of uncertainty has replaced the signs of recovery that we saw in July.

While the proportion of businesses making a loss has not increased, fewer businesses are making a profit with 35%, down from 44% in July, and there has been a corresponding increase in those who are breaking even at 46%, up from 36% in July.

The general trend towards increasing prices continues. 51% of businesses raised their prices over the last three months (although this was down from 62% in July). A further 65% (up from 51% in July) will do so over the next three months.

Reliance on external support has increased again, with 74% of businesses either partially or completely reliant on Government support, which is up from 50% in July, although not quite as high as January’s 81%. Unsurprisingly in the current climate, 77% are paying more for energy than they were six months ago. For half of businesses, energy costs have increased by 40% or more.

Debt levels are rising again, with 54% of businesses in debt, back to levels last seen in January. 42% of businesses in debt report that the amount of debt they are carrying has increased. 58% believe it will take them more than two years to clear.

Richard Lambert, chief executive of the NHBF says, “Many hair & beauty businesses are teetering on the edge of survival. A range of indicators including business activity, rising prices, rising debt, reliance on government support, uncertainty around survival and a dip in growth aspirations all signal shift towards a more negative outlook over the summer.

Businesses have benefitted from an array of support from the UK and devolved governments over the last two years, most recently in the form of the Energy Price Guarantee. However, further support will be needed through the winter and beyond and we are talking to the Government about how best to address this.”

The economic impact is having an obvious knock-on effect on staffing, recruitment, and apprentices. Recruitment intentions have dipped slightly and are less optimistic for the future. In the next three months, only 12% of the survey respondents are definitely, or likely to take on new staff (down from 27% in July). Over the last three months, 25% have cut back on apprentices (up from 17% in July). In a slight dip, only 9% were definitely or likely to take on apprentices in the next three months.



Denman supports Schools Sport Outreach Programme

Supporting the local community is a continuous goal for Denman International. Earlier this month Denman partnered with Annandale Men’s Hockey Club in South Belfast to help launch expansion of their landmark Schools Outreach Programme. Denman Chairman, Dr John Rainey MBE has long had ties to the club from his hockey playing days and was delighted to donate £2000 to fund opportunities for children that might not otherwise be able to afford to play the sport. The donation is part of Denman’s consistent and purposeful CSR (corporate social responsibility) strategywhich seeks ways to do good for the community, the environment and the industry. 

Speaking at the launch, Club Chairman John Stephens said ‘This program is all about bringing the sport of hockey to schools who would not otherwise have the opportunity to play it. The programme has proven very popular in introducing hockey to children in a fun setting. We are indebted to Denman and Belfast City council without whose support this expansion would not be possible.’

Dr John F. Rainey MBE, Chairman of Denman and the Denroy Group added ‘Sport is a great way for children to exercise and the kids really enjoy it. The work that Annadale is doing with these schools is absolutely fabulous and long may we continue to support this.”

Image: Teachers and pupils from Knockbreda Primary School, Dr John Rainey MBE Denman Chairman and Annandale Hockey Club Chairman John Stephens. 

OUT NOW: BarberEVO UK and Ireland Issue 35 – November / December 2022

The latest issue of BarberEVO UK and Ireland is OUT NOW. This issue is packed full of advice, features and trends to keep you up to date with what’s current at the busiest time of year.  

Gracing the coveted front cover (even if we do say so ourselves) is the WAHL British Barber of the Year 2022, Charlie Baker. We got an exclusive interview with the winner at Salon International in London, who told us what it takes to be the best in the bizz.

We also have the first reactions of the winning team of WAHL British Barbershop of the Year 2022, Ruffians Shoreditch. Unmissable reads all round!

Also in this issue:

Furniture and interiors

We visited some of the coolest shops in the UK to find out why making your space a comfortable and welcoming place to be is the way to extend that client list and keep your people coming back to your chair treatment-after-treatment.

Hestory tells us about their Moda chairs – why they went with the brand and what makes them a cut above the rest. Comfort and style in equal measure, is what we’re told. 

Lighting matters too – at least that’s what Cubed Cuts and Coffee told us. They set up a unique space that offers, you guessed it, coffee and haircuts. Bringing two of the owners’ favourite things together creates an atmosphere unmatched by other shops in the area.


Let’s talk colour! Creativity is at the heart of barbering – and that doesn’t just mean with the clippers. We chat to some of the most talented creative colour experts in the UK about how to apply colour that lasts.

Surrey-based Ahmed AlsanawI has taken the hair, tattoo, and coffee worlds by storm with his three A-STAR shops. He’s the Chelsea F.C. team’s favourite barber and our expert in all things creative colour. He tells us his journey toward barbering for the stars.

Murray McRae heads up STAG in Edinburgh and champions inclusive hairdressing for all genders and hair types. A lot of his clients want to try something crazy to build their identity – he told us how to build their confidence using colour.


Styling isn’t just for session and editorial hairdressers. We find out what trends are trickling down from the catwalk to the barber chair. What did we learn? Don’t limit yourself to the familiar; try different products and collaborate with other talented barbers to boost your creativity. 

Ciara Madden – American Crew’s All Star Winner for Ireland shared her advice on picking the right pomade for your client, Alan Beak shares his top styling tools, and much more. 


It’s the busiest time of the year, but we’ve got your back. Discover how to make the most of the festive winter season with our expert guides to boosting retail in a way that not only encourages clients to look after their cuts but to dare to try something new, too.

Woodstock Barbershop show us how they do it, while Todd’s Chop Shop tell us why making a place feel accessible to all people – young, old, families, genders – is your key to encouraging additional purchases and revisits. 

We hope you enjoy this issue! You can order your print copy here.

Now is the Time to Stand Up: One in Five Brits are Told They’re Not Good Enough

Bed Head launches ‘Stay Headstrong’ campaign that encourages individuals to let their creativity rule.

  • Two fifths of Brits wish they could have been braver with their hair growing up and believe their hair is the most important part of personal appearance
  • One in 10 look up to Miley Cyrus, Harry Styles and Vivienne Westwood as headstrong role models
  • Over half of Brits think their hair is an extension of their personality
  • The campaign has just launched a new web series fronted by FFSYTHOLily Phillips and Lucia Blayke to coincide with its first nationwide consumer retail launch at Boots
  • This year, Bed Head is supporting STONEWALL to drive awareness and help create safe and equal opportunities for the LGBTQ+ community

Original rebel hair brand, Bed Head, has launched ‘Stay Headstrong’, a campaign celebrating fearless self-expression and encouraging experimentation. The ‘Stay Headstrong’ campaign is a response to new research that shows that one in five (19%) Brits admit they’ve been told they’re not good enough, with one third (30%) being made to feel inadequate at some point in their lives with regards to how they look. Of those surveyed, more than half (60%) rely on their hair to give them confidence, with two fifths (40%) claiming their hair-do is the most important part of their appearance.  As part of Bed Head’s campaign, the brand has launched ‘Chats from the Chair’, a web content series on its native platform, that features interviews from headstrong queer Grime artist FFSYTHO, cutthroat comedian Lily Phillips, and trans pride activist and creator Lucia Blayke. The interviews shed light on why the ‘stay headstrong’ attitude is so important to each of the stars and illustrates the integral role products play as tools for self-expression, enabling people to be true unapologetic versions of themselves. When it comes to role models, the consumer research revealed people admire creative challengers Miley Cyrus,Harry Styles and Vivienne Westwood for their bold fearless nature (42%), integrity (47%) and courage to stand up for what they believe in (44%). The results also showed that half (51%) of Brits think their hair is an extension of their personality, changing their style on average every two or three years (32%). Of those surveyed, adopting a headstrong attitude has helped people with:

  • Improved confidence – 29%
  • To take more risks in their personal lives – 21%
  • To persevere after rejection – 20%

Katie Westerby, Senior Marketing Manager at Bed Head, said: “At Bed Head, our purpose has always been to champion creativity by equipping artists with elevated professional hair care products and encouraging all consumers to push the boundaries of what they can do. Being headstrong is not only something we embody as a brand, but a belief we want to instil in everyone who buys our products. We hope that this campaign will spark conversation and motivate new and existing Bed Head devotees, and we can’t wait to see it.”  This year, Bed Head is supporting and donating to STONEWALL a charity that stands for lesbian, gay, bi, trans, queer, questioning and ace (LGBTQ+) people everywhere. In the UK, more than a third of employees don’t believe it’s appropriate for their LGBTQ+ colleagues to be out in the workplace. In response to this, Bed Head and STONEWALL want to help create more equal opportunities in society so LGBTQ+ people feel safer in our modern society.  For more information about Bed Head’s ‘Stay Headstrong’ campaign, please visit

Editorial Bootcamp with Thomas Hills

Prepare for the Keune Hairstylist Awards and discover the complete process of how to create Editorial-style looks from multi-award winning industry professional, Thomas Hills!

Thomas Hills’ achievements include 2x British Hairdressing Awards wins (Southern), over 300 magazine features and 25 front covers (incl. HJ, Pro Hair). 

During the Editorial Bootcamp session, you’ll join Thomas Hills along with our Education Team to explore a mix of theoretical and practical elements on how to create show-stopping looks that are perfectly executed and ready for Editorial exhibition. 

DATE: Tuesday 1st November 2022

LOCATION: PH Group Studio, 19 & 20 De Havilland Road, Skypark, Exeter, EX5 2FL

TIME: 10:00am until 4:00pm, with breaks for lunch and coffee.


OR redeem your place at*

*Limited spaces available. Spaces cost £50 excl. VAT each. Spaces redeemable on the Keune Rewards store for 12,000 points.