The highlights from BARBERFEST 2021

BARBERFEST 2021 was a unique blend of learning, inspiration, brand experiences and networking – how we missed catching up with friends, colleagues and meeting new acquaintances. The very first BARBERFEST took place on Monday 5 July at the Brighton Hilton Metropole and we were proud to be one of the first industry events since the pandemic.

What was on?

We listened hard about the stuff you love about events, and the stuff you don’t. So we created an experiential event for barbers and men’s hair professionals with live demos, competitions, business advice and leading brands.

Head here to see the Barberfest Floorplan!

The stages

We knew you wanted to immerse yourself in both creative and business education, so we organised two separate stages – the Modern Barber Inspiration Stage and the Business Learning Stage, sponsored by the NHBF.

Here are some of the amazing names on the two stages.


Business Learning Stage, sponsored by the NHBF

10:00am Phil Jarman, Shifting Your Mindset: Marketing, Business Growth and Customer Delight (Not Satisfaction!), co-owner Carlo & Co

10:45am Matt Allen, You’re More Than A Barber, You’re A Brand, branding expert and project manager

11:30am Carl Hinder, How to Make Sure Your Clients Never Say ‘No’, business coaching specialist

12:15pm Andrew Cannon, Is it Possible to Build a Barbershop Brand?, CEO and co-founder of Ruffians

1:00pm Tom Chapman, Can A Barber Save A Life?, founder Lions Barber Collective

1:45pm Sam Campagna, Building A Sustainable Team Through Employment, creative director Alternative Barbering Co

2:30pm Charlie Baker, The Powers of Social Media: What to Post and Where to Post it, owner Studio NINETY3

3:15pm Mike Taylor, Why Apprenticeships Are Vital For Our Industry, founder of Mike Taylor Education



MB Inspiration Stage

10:00am Great British Barbering Academy

10:45am Teddy Edwards Cutting Rooms

11:30am MVRCK by Mitch Ambassadors – Baldy and Kade Burgess

12:15pm Cresswell Barber Co

1:45pm Toni & Guy Art Team

2:30pm Keri Blue and Greygory

3:15pm Dark Stag ambassadors AJ Rapture and Bridey Jo

4:00pm Raw Talent Barbering Competition Winners Announced


The brands

You knew you wanted to get to know brands that will help you build your business and make your life easier. So we had pop-up stands from brands including MVRCK by Mitch and Salon Supplies. We kept things intimate (and COVID secure), by keeping the event small.

Brand pop-ups included…

The networking

And finally, we knew you wanted a place to hang out and chat with your industry peers and drink a beer (if your head didn’t hurt from the MB Awards the previous night!), so the two Networking Hubs, sponsored by MVRCK by Mitch and PPL PRS Music came in very handy!

We had a selfie wall too which made a big impression!


The competitions

The Raw Talent Barbering Competition, sponsored by VTCT was brought to you by Modern Barber Magazine, BARBERFEST and Mike Taylor Education with the aim of giving a much-needed platform for barber students and junior barbers to showcase their skills.

Excitingly, the final took place live in our competition area. It was the perfect time for the next generation of barbers to show the industry what they were made of. And the best news? The winners received a £250 prize and Dark Stag goodies!

Contestants were asked to provide up to four images of ONE haircut they have done as well as a short description of the look and the inspiration behind it in order to enter. Big congratulations to the finalists – announced here,


We’re very excited to do it all again next year – but if you can’t wait for that then we have a Modern Barber stage at Salon International on 16-18 October. Get your early bird tickets here.