Stel Nicolaou, Aveda Master Barber shares his 25 years of hair wisdom
Be honest; how often do we really need to get our hair cut?
It depends on the finish you’re after. If you’re opting for a style that’s defined and well-structured you may like to visit once a week to keep a nice sharp hairline. If you’re going for more of an effortless looking finish you may want it cut a little less often. As a general rule I encourage my guests to come in at least once a month.
What are the biggest fails most men make when it comes to their hair?
Using too much product. It isn’t necessary and leaves hair heavy. It can also look really dated and over-done. Instead, start with a small amount of product and then if needed you can build upon that to create the desired style. It’s always a good tip to begin by warming product up in your fingertips so it is more malleable.
Do men really need to match their hairstyle to the shape of their face?
I think so, yes. It’s always a good idea to have a chat with your barber before you change your style so the two of you can discuss what you’re after and any defining features you would rather not accentuate. For example if you have an oval face shape the trick is to wear hair backwards to create some angles and volume on top. It’s also definitely important to consider the length of your face. An oblong face is slightly longer so it’s important to avoid taking the sides too short if keeping the length on top, as this would make the face appear even longer.
Is there a ‘safe’ style that suits most blokes?
No two heads of hair are the same so I’d always advise consulting with your barber. That said, the classic undercut is a great style and has a lot of versatility with a range of styling options available.
What’s the best style for thinning hair?
It depends on where you’re thinning and whether it is early or later stages. If you are losing hair from the crown, a rough crop about 1-2 inches on top, styled with a good matte product can help to disguise thinning. If you’re thinning on the sides, a shorter style can help to blend the lengths. Depending on your hair type/length, a hair-dryer can help to inject volume and lift. The wet-look is not your friend, so opt for a dry, textured finish as it makes the hair look thicker.
Why can’t I get my hair to look the way my barber gets it even when I’m using the same products as him?
Before you leave ask your barber to educate you in the way they achieved your hairstyle, usually through blow drying and styling. Use it as an opportunity to learn from them and get him to show you his techniques.
If I really hate what my barber has just done to my hair what can I do, other than wear a hat till it grows out?
It is important to have the utmost trust in your barber. Always begin with a consultation to discuss your ideas and hair concerns – if you get this right you shouldn’t have any nasty surprises with the final look. But always speak to them afterwards if you aren’t happy.
Are there any products that you always turn to?
I love a product that multi-tasks. I get all of my guests to try Aveda Men Composition Oil, I like to massage the oil onto my scalp for added moisture, it also works nicely pre-shave and is a brilliant beard conditioning product.