Barbers Offering Free Haircuts for Kids Going Back to School

Back-to-school season is always an expensive time of year, and with the cost of living crisis effecting so many across the UK, many parents are feeling the pressure this year. With that in mind members of the barbering profession have stepped up to support their communities by offering free haircuts to kids going back to school.

Less Than Zero Barbers in Chesterfield, The Blind Pig Barbers & Bar in Darlington, Industry Barbers in West Yorkshire and Route 8 Barbers in Swindon have all set up their own initiatives to support families in need of support. Keen to spread awareness of the kindness of the barbering community, MB caught up with the barbershops offering their services…

Less Than Zero Barbers

Less Than Zero Barbers initially decided to offer free haircuts for kids going back to school for one month, however they have now extended this offer due to being so overwhelmed with families showing an interest. Owner Martin Wallis-Keyworth, explained: “We decided to do this as whilst many families are struggling, many have had to turn to food banks for help. It’s these families who we decided to concentrate our help on, but we understand many, many more will need community support, too. We have a reputation for supporting the community that supports us, so this just seemed a natural thing to do,” adding: “To ensure that we are focusing on those who need us the most, the food bank charity we are working with has organised bookings for us.” Expanding on the offer further, he notes: “No style will be refused as you never know what’s coming through the door.”

Discussing the role of the barbershop, Martin adds: “We feel that our barbershop is a conduit for the community – whether that’s linking up a job seeker to a possible employer, collecting clothes and food for the homeless, supporting ill children to make their lives better or signposting people struggling with their mental health – we do all of it.”



The Blind Pig Barbers & Bar

Having doubled the number of cuts they initially pledged, The Blind Pig Barbers & Bar decided to leave the offer open to all ages and styles. Discussing why they decided to launch the offer, owner James Robson said: “Times are extremely tough for a number of families at the moment; with inflation rising, culminating in an increased cost of living, it’ll only get harder. We saw the Kuts 4 Kids Instagram page and thought it was a great idea to give something back to the community within the barbershop.”

Discussing the response, he added: “It was absolutely overwhelming. The appointments were full almost overnight. We couldn’t have asked for a better response. It just goes to show that there are a lot of families struggling at the moment. This makes it a tad bittersweet.”



Industry Barbers

Chatting to Industry Barbers owner Joe Slack, he explained: “We’re fortunate enough to still be here as a business thanks to the staff and the help and support from the local community, our friends, and our clients having endured two devastating floods and a pandemic. So, offering something like this is our way of giving something back to the community.”

Expanding on his decision to offer free cuts to kids under 15, Joe says: “The cost of living is getting out of hand, and we’ve noticed that there’s an increased number of people using food banks and families struggling financially, so we thought it would be a nice gesture to help out families and parents who might not be able to afford it.”

A back-to-school haircut is about more than looking smart: “I think it’s important to boost people’s confidence and self-esteem, especially for the kids going back to school or perhaps to a new school – they want the latest cut or style, and hopefully something as little as a haircut may help them go on to have the right attitude and confidence to perform better whilst at school, or even if it just puts a smile on their face… that’s enough for us.”

Recognising the challenges offering free haircuts for kids can present from a business perspective, Joe explains: “We’re not saying small businesses should be giving away freebies, as times are hard and the rising costs of running a business are getting ridiculous, however our Junior barber Harvey is in the process of building his client base up, so this scheme will benefit him as well going forward. A good idea to people who can’t afford the rising cost of such services would be to seek out the junior stylists in your local salons and colleges and give them a go, as they need as much experience as they can get and often offer them at a discounted price – if not free.”



Route 8 Barbers (Swindon)

Route 8 Barbers owner, Sylvester King shared: “We’re already running our offer, and it will continue until next Friday. As a barber I have always believed that we are here to serve the community that supports us. The industry should be a community of hope and help others when we can. Even though things are harder for a lot of people right now, I thought I could still give back myself.”

Sylvester adds: “The offer is not limited to any cuts or styles, as we didn’t want to limit parents. Plus, this way kids can be as flashy as they want, which can boost their confidence.”



For top tips when it comes to cutting kids’ hair, check out our chat with Mark Maciver aka SliderCuts.