Barrie's Barber Boys at Salon International

December 5, 2016



Local barbering boys Michael Palmer and Joe Wilkinson from Barrie Stephen Hair in Leicester took to the stage recently at one of the hairdressing industry’s biggest exhibitions in the world, Salon International.


Held at London’s ExCel Centre, the boys were onstage at the exhibition that plays host to nearly 40,000 people from 80 different countries, to showcase their barbering skills to a live audience.The talented pair joined an incredible line-up of industry icons to perform a 25-minute cutting and styling routine on the highly prestigious Hairdresser’s Journal Men’s Stage where they talked the audience through the looks they had created and exactly how they created them.


Professional hairdressers and barbers, journalists and members of the press from all over the world gathered to watch these two rising stars demonstrate their front-line talent and techniques on stage.The boys presented cutting-edge looks inspired by the modern-day man.


Their performance included a classic bearded style with an ever-popular skin fade, a textured crop, a 1950’s rock ‘n’ roll inspired ducktail style and a 90’s throw-back bowl cut with a modern twist, styled smooth and waved to show two different ways of wearing one haircut.These up-and-coming barbering stars are busy at work each week keeping the men of Leicester sharp and groomed at the Barber Lounge at Barrie Stephen Hair on King Street in the city centre.



Representing Leicester’s very own little piece of retro New York barbershop glamour, the Barber Lounge is located near the professional services quarter and is gentlemanly and sophisticated with a private club feel, attracting the career driven man who wants to look the part for their job, and the family men who remember going to the barber shop as a boy.The Barber Boys


Michael Palmer and Joe Wilkinson are part of the Barrie Stephen Barber Lounge team, representing Leicester’s very own little piece of retro barbershop glamour. Together with their team, they have turned this part of the business into its own success story.  


Here is a little bit more on Barrie’s barber boys….


Michael Palmer began his hairdressing career at the age of 17 as a NVQ Level 2 apprentice working on both men and women’s hairdressing in a busy inner-city salon. It didn’t take long for him to realise that his passion lay in men’s hairdressing much more than it did women’s. He found himself heading home from the salon in the evenings to cut his male friends and families hair in his kitchen, which is when he really started to experiment in his work. 

Once Michael had completed his apprenticeship, he moved away from women’s hairdressing all together and threw himself into the world of men’s hair. He got a thrill from the pace, the attention to detail, and the diversity in trends and the rest is history.

Now, master barber Michael’s average day consists of a full column of men’s haircuts and beard design at the Barber Lounge on King Street. Gone are the days when men pop into sit and wait for a free slot- loyal clients now book ahead for their next six appointments as the demand has become higher and higher. The kind of service you can expect from Michael is at an all-time high because he offers what the modern day man wants- a professional service from a cool, fashion-forward brand. 


Joe Wilkinson is the artistic type, having completed a degree in graphic design and transferred his creative canvas to hair three years ago. He began training in both men and women’s hairdressing but always knew that men’s was where his real interest lay. Growing up seeing style icons such as David Beckham moving from trend to trend only made Joe want to experiment more and his interest in men’s styles grew. He loves creating a complete style overhaul; spending a good hour with a client, having a chat, giving them a haircut and a beard trim and transforming their look completely. When clients come in with their own off-the-wall and unique ideas, Joe’s skills really come to light.

A typical working day in the life of Joe Wilkinson consists of 15-17 clients and plenty of beard trims and men’s facials. And his barbering essentials? He couldn’t be without cordless clippers, a quality comb and his foilers for skin fades right down to the bone.

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