Modern Barber Stage at Salon International

Published 09th Oct 2022 by Josie Jackson
Modern Barber Stage at Salon International The Modern Barber Stage returned to the ExCeL London for Salon International 2022, and with a packed line-up full of innovative and inspirational barbers, the weekend was set to be a huge success. Here's what the MB team saw...


Saturday 8 October:



Jack Eames and Stewart Roberts talked about the wonderful work that the charity does to help the homeless look good and feel better, all with the simple act of getting a haircut. Such a small thing can have a big impact on someone’s life.

Mike Taylor Education

Mike Taylor and the Great British Barbering Academy shared why barbering is a great career choice. Cheryl, Mike and Elvis showed razor cutting, clipper over comb techniques and a skin fade.


The team behind the training academy showcased “the best skin fades you’ll ever see in your life”.

Mic Damiano 

Mic Damiano took to the stage to showcase a short fade, back and sides. He wanted to create a realistic but fashionable look, focussing on technique, whilst also sharing some of his top tips about working as a barber.  Mic recommends being a barber that takes control of your client, as the moment they walk in to your barbershop, they want to feel confident in your hands. He was also very passionate about not blowing on your clippers: “Why are you putting hot breath on something that you’re going to put on their scalp? That’s not professional!”


JJ Savani 

JJ Savani shared the stage with two Vins – Vin from Leicester Barber Academy, and Vin from Roots/Co. each worked on a different look simultaneously, which all featured a fade element. Centre stage, JJ demonstrated how to integrate a freestyle into a fade. Meanwhile, the former Vin created a simple skin fade focussing on a stretched fade vs condensed fade, whilst the latter helped his model tidy up the style he has been trying to grow out. They all agreed that taking into account head shape and hair texture are vital – noting that one style will look different on every person, and that you should adjust the style accordingly.


Jarred Liddington

Jared Liddington was keen to showcase wearable, creative haircuts with colour. One of his looks was a mullet, however he tweaked the style to make sure it was both fashionable and wearable. Jarred explained that when working on a create style you don’t have to go super hard on the detail – just add a little personality. He also suggested spending time styling the hair in front of the mirror so they client can replicate it – especially if it is a new look for them.


Sunday 9 Oct

Sunday at Salon was all about embracing long hair and world class education with some of the best barbers in the industry, hosted by the brilliant Natalie Cresswell and Danny Robinson.

Sirak Kebede

Sirak Kebede, winner of Best Apprentice at the Modern Barber Awards 2022, kicked off the day, talking us through his one year journey into barbering, telling audience that working hard is the key to a successful career.


The Manifesto team demonstrated both salon friendly and editorial looks, with Tom and Matt showcasing dry cuts and Dylan displaying his wet cutting skills. Leading the show was Rino Riccio, who told us that thanks to covid he is seeing a trend in clients growing their hair long, stepping away from the skin fade trends we've seen over the last few years. Manifesto pride themselves on creating everyday, wearable, commercial shop looks, telling the crowd "We are not different, we just love what we do"

Barber josh.o.p

Barber josh.op told us that he is gearing up to launch a new mentoring scheme in the next few weeks, so watch this space! His advice for the crowd was that barbering is a job and a passion, going on to say: "Achieving your dreams is not an overnight thing."

Andrea Raymond

Andrea Raymond, Wahl ambassador, was working with longer hair, and told the audience that she has also noticed a trend with customers wanting scissor cuts coming out of the Covid-19 pandemic. Since clients were able to grow out their 'in between' haircuts what they want has now changed with a demand for longer hair and the desire to be more adventurous.

Danny Robinson and Jay Majors

Danny Robinson introduced his barbering inspiration Jay Majors to the stage, talking us through his journey from prison to barbering and how the job changed his life.

Hayden Cassidy

Hayden Cassidy lit up the stage, showcasing a crop cut and style on model one before bringing model two, and long time friend, on stage to display an amazing hair transformation.

Ian Harrold

Ian Harrold was joined by Ian Tucker, national education manager for American Crew, to talk to Salon vistors about Attitude Mens Hair whilst showing us his cutting skills.


Monday 10 Oct

Phil Jarman

With over 35 years of barbering experience, Phil Jarman talked all things traditional and educational when he appeared on the MB Stage. The pompadour he created allowed him to demonstrate techniques  such as scissor over comb and razor cutting - something he says is good for taking out thickness without length. Phil was asked about his experience working with different brands, and how he got into this; he shared that concentrating on core values, for example making people happy and honing your technique, are vital - all the rest will follow.

George Smith and Annabel Payne

George Smith and Annabel Payne created looks inspired by their entries for this year's BHA's - where George is a finalist in the Men's Hair category. They spoke about the affordability of a shoot, and George noted that creating a look which is both simplistic enough that you'll have enough time, but effective enough that it will look great behind the lens, is key.

Whilst Annabel entered the BHAs under her own name, she also assisted George with his shoot, and said that she loves the feeling of creative teamwork.


Alan Beak

Having worked with various brands, Alan Beak discussed some of his dos and don'ts in barbering. He said: "You are your own worst critique, which is why self analysis is so important. Put a plan in place for yourself to improve." He also explained his three-step process when dealing with new clients: Inspect the hair and skin, detect anything that needs changing, such as shape, and then correct it.

Whilst on stage, Alan was asked by a member of the audience whether he believes tools or skills are the most important factor in delivering a great haircut - a fitting question for Alan as he works closely with a few brands. He answered that it's not the tools, it's the person that uses them, however using tools that you believe in is important. "It's good when you've got to a point with the tools where you're really comfortable using them," he said.


Mr Official

Mr Official took to the stage to educate barbers on hair and beards. He explained that educating your clients on how to look after their beards, just like you would for their hair, is crucial, as this is how you can help them to achieve the look that they want; this support will keep them coming back to you. He also shared that "Sharp lines and a nice sculpt can separate you from others."

Max Oliver

Whilst the Max Oliver team, which includes three brothers, Max, Oliver and Josh, have a wealth of experience between them, this was their first time demonstrating their skills in such a manner. Max developed his skills through barbering, whilst Oliver began as a hairdresser with Toni&Guy; they later recruited their younger brother Josh to join the team. On stage, Max explained their ethos of combining barbering and hairdressing to create a unified experience for their clients. Josh explained: "We don't like to rush the process, otherwise you end up making more work for yourselves; that's why we give 45 minutes for appointments."

Meanwhile, Max was asked about how the ethos of their business translates into pricing. He said that offering appointments versus walk-in slots, and educating clients on the value of their time, helped them set their prices at what they believe is a fair level. He also added that offering good customer service is key, such as providing consultations and serving drinks.

Josie Jackson

Josie Jackson

Published 09th Oct 2022

Josie supports the team with content for the print magazine, website and social media channels at HJ. Having grown up in a salon environment (thanks to her hairdresser mum) and even working as a Saturday girl before getting her degree in English Literature, Josie feels right at home in the industry. Although she’s experimented with a few creative colour looks in the past, she always comes back to blonde, and loves all things hydrating and bond building.

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