Guess what gents? ‘Grooming’ is no longer a dirty word! It’s the 21st Century and debonair is back.
We spoke with male grooming guru Trent Pridmore, Managing Director of Brisbane’s razor sharp The Emporium Barber, about binding beauty and beers in the ultimate pursuit of manliness.
The Emporium Barber Brisbane was established in 2012; what prompted you to open a salon specifically for men?
There was a clear gap in the market, especially when it comes to service. Our wives/partners/girlfriends traditionally go to a salon and are pampered and have quite the experience with decor, drinks, entertainment, etc. designed specifically with them in mind. It’s an outlet for them; a way to relax. As men we either head to the same salon as our partners (at her urging) or we go to the traditional barber down the road. Here at The Emporium Barber we provide a comfortable environment, boutique beverages, coffee from our espresso bar and most importantly exceptional service. Our aim is to provide an experience above all else.
Why do you think we are seeing this recent resurgence in men’s grooming and fashion awareness?
I think guys are now not afraid to look after themselves. We are flooded with inspiration from things such as social media, and with technology today it’s much easier to be educated so we don’t feel out of place when stepping into an establishment. We now come armed with knowledge which I think for us men is a way of feeling empowered. I also think, despite the media saying the economy is not great, we tend to have more disposable income and are not afraid to spend money to make ourselves look and feel great and help us stand out from the crowd.
The Emporium Barber prides itself on ‘the pursuit of manliness’ – what is your advice to men who view male grooming as effeminate?
Seriously, get with the times! There is nothing effeminate with having someone shave you with a cut throat razor. We use products that are designed for men, not just in how they work but also how they feel and smell. Rather than being effeminate, what we aim to do is enhance those masculine features.
Why is personal grooming as important for men as it is for women?
It’s important for everyone. Women in our lives spend considerable time and money ensuring they look their best for us, why should we not do the same for them? But you know what? It also makes you feel great when you take care of yourself. It’s very true that you feel great after a good haircut; throw in a shave and a face freshen up and that is amplified hugely.
For men interested in their first male grooming experience, what would you recommend?
For someone who is in real need of some grooming, the easiest would be simply to tidy up your eyebrows. I’m not talking about bringing out the wax at this stage but just a simple trim is going to make a huge difference. From there, head towards a cut throat shave; done right it’s a very relaxing and refreshing experience. From there you can get the monobrow waxed, maybe even threaded, and then look at something like our face freshen up, which is a mini facial we have designed specifically for men.
Talk us through some of your more specialist treatments, including The Emporium Barber’s famous cut-throat shave.
We aim to provide an experience in everything we do, especially when it comes to our shaves. For us that all starts with the hot towel; piping hot and smelling great. We use plenty of them along with specialised products to get your skin ready for the razor. That’s all repeated to give you a super close shave and if we’ve done it right you will probably fall asleep!
What packages do you offer exclusively for wedding parties?
We are just about to introduce some special packages where the guys can have our whole shop to themselves. They can then have whatever they need from our service menu, bring their photographer, have a beverage and just relax with the guys! Given enough time there’s not much we can’t organise; we can design a package to suit.
To find out more, including details of The Emporium Barber’s special Groomsmen packages, visit the online store.
Images by The Emporium Barber.