Meet the Female Barbers Who Are Changing the Game
To kick off Women’s History Month, we wanted to showcase some of the brightest stars in the growing cohort of female barbers. We’re proud to say we’ve been working with these trailblazing women for years, and we’re excited to share their talent with you.
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Life as a Female Barber
In the last decade, the world of barbering has seen a major shift: more women than ever are picking up the clippers and specializing in men’s grooming. These changes have been driven by the confidence and persistence of female barbers who continue to shatter stereotypes and challenge outdated norms.
In such a male-dominated industry, it is no surprise that not everyone has welcomed the change. However, more diversity in the barbershop makes the industry stronger. On one hand, diversity better serves clients by offering a wider skillset and more creative approaches. It also highlights the ways that barbering and hairdressing can learn from one another.
Being the only woman in the room comes with challenges. Women who aspire to cut men’s hair face additional scrutiny, both from potential employers and clients. They often deal with gendered expectations for how a female barber should look. These stereotypes can discourage and exclude women who do not fit a certain mold, regardless of their skills and work ethic.
It is difficult to find reliable statistics for the gender breakdown of the barber industry. Within the beauty and personal service industry, only those who obtain permits and licenses show up in government figures. Estimates for the number of female barbers range from a conservative 16 percent to a surprising 44 percent. The actual number is likely somewhere in between. In fact, the most recent data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the figure at 25 percent.
Despite the obstacles, the number of women in barbering is only getting larger — and we are here for it. Read on to meet four talented female barbers and Booksy Ambassadors. Each of these women is charting a unique course for their own career and breaking traditional industry norms.
Brandi LaShay, also known as The Original Barber Doll, is a Master Barber and BaByliss Barberology Platform Educator. She owns Atlanta-based grooming studio The Barber Doll House and has over 25 years of industry experience. Brandi was awarded Barbercon’s Best Female Barber of the Year for 2019.
In addition to owning and operating her salon, Brandi is an educator on the cutting edge of the barbering and beauty industry. She offers education on HD hair design and placement techniques with a keen eye for symmetry. She is especially known for her clean design style, fades, and unique attention to detail. As a pioneer in the barbering and beauty industry, Brandi is a huge champion for women’s empowerment. Her message to female barbers is that you are your biggest competition and your passion to do well will be your catalyst for success.
Tina Sapia owns and runs Sapia’s Barbershop and Ciao Bella Salon in Clearwater, Florida. Her shop philosophy is “a new school spin on an old school trade” and she prides herself on running a welcoming, inclusive, and professional space.
In just ten years, Tina has built her brand, designed her own logo, merchandise, and grooming products. Though she loves being behind the chair, her passion is educating new barbers about her craft. She is a Booksy Ambassador, Wahl educator, and has headed up Barber Battles across the state of Florida. Beyond barbering, Tina loves giving back to her community. She is always looking for ways to donate her time, offering events like free clipper classes at local schools.
Never give up on your dreams, especially if you keep hearing “No.” That’s the spirit that led Taylor Leven to open her own barbershop at just 25 years old. When she was first starting out, Taylor was rejected from every Chicago barbershop where she applied to work. Despite the uphill climb, she persevered and used the rejection as fuel.
When she realized she wouldn’t find her niche in someone else’s salon or shop, Taylor bet on herself and created her own. She is now the owner of Headspace Barbershop, located just outside of Chicago. Taylor’s shop aims to be a modern, inclusive space that merges the worlds of hairstyling and barbering. In other words, Headspace is defined by its focus on the person, rather than the person’s gender. “I do everyone’s hair,” Taylor says. “The hair we wear on top of our heads has nothing to do with our gender.” Aside from being a talented barber, Taylor is also an educator and a seasoned pro at marketing her brand on social media.
Christy Clips is a licensed cosmetologist, men’s hair consultant, and independent boutique owner based in San Antonio, Texas. She has 14 years of industry experience, including a decade of running her own business. Christy was immersed in the world of hair from a young age. She first learned the ropes while working as an apprentice at her aunt’s salon. It was there that Christy took an interest in male grooming, and the rest is history. Her business caters to the modern gentleman and helps men build confidence and own their masculinity.
Christy is also a successful online influencer and social media marketing maven, with over 63,000 Instagram followers and 34,000 TikTok followers. Her online presence is a great example of how to establish a professional yet feminine brand in a male-dominated industry. We’re definitely a little biased, but Christy is always impressing us with her creative reels about the benefits of using Booksy.
This Women’s History Month, show some appreciation to the talented female barbers and service providers in your community. Find and book them right here on Booksy.