The Best Independent Barbershops You Should Know About
Good news for men: The best independent barbershops are more intimate than mall chain salons, less intimidating than upscale grooming lounges, and more current than your lolo’s favorite spot. They also honor both the past and current lifestyles of men, putting the spotlight on traditional pompadours and fades, while still delivering trendier cuts.
We’ve rounded up neighborhood spots and upscale lounges for you to try, but these are the independent barbershops, from Manila to Pampanga to Cavite, that offer different experiences.
Brother’s Keeper Barbershop
The street barber movement is a small community. Brother’s Keeper founder Matt Lester Babao is a Heavyhands Barbershop alum who’s been kicking it with the Slick Barbers Co. group since its early days. He’s since spread his proverbial wings with his own barbershop in Cavite, a reliable choice for fellows in the south looking for traditional cuts. Reserve a slot online to avoid waiting in line.
Book it: Open Sunday to Friday from 1:00 to 9:00 p.m, Brother’s Keeper Barbershop is at MA Salvo 17 Aguinaldo Highway, Panapaan 6, Bacoor, Cavite. Visit @brotherskeeperbarbershopcavite on Facebook.
Proving that Poblacion has no shortage of passionate concepts, Nando’s Barbershop positions itself as “the first Afro-American Barbershop in the Philippines.” That’s certainly something we haven’t heard before. Apart from the standard cut-and-shave menu, the barbershop offers Jamaican or African braids and haircuts that are suited for particularly kinky hair. This is the safe space for our 'fro-ed friends.
Book it: Open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m, Nando’s Barbershop is at 5076 P. Burgos Street, Poblacion, Makati City. Visit nandobarbershop.ph.
The barbershop and retail space, located inside a heritage building on historic Escolta Street, carries Manila's appeal without... the grime. Adorned with glass doors and wood panels, Folk 1006 is an Instagram moment waiting to happen. More important, it gives one of the most consistently great fades in the city.
Book it: Open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m, Folk 1006 is at First United Building, 413 Escolta Street, Manila. Visit @folk1006 on Instagram.
There aren’t many establishments that openly flaunt their personality, but Pampanga-based Siglo chooses to present a very distinct voice with its celebration of history, counterculture, and gentlemanly influences. All that just means it totally gets the grooming lifestyle of today.
Book it: Open on Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m, Siglo Brotherhood is at 18 Marcel Building Jesus Street, Angeles City, Pampanga. Visit @siglobarbershop on Facebook.
Bond St. Social
The south has another barbershop to call home. Bond St. Social is dedicated to the more refined aspects of men’s lifestyle: pompadours, suits, leather shoes. The modern-day neighborhood barbershop is perfect for father and son, and if you’re not into classic styles, it delivers trendier cuts, too.
Book it: Open Tuesday to Thursday from 12 to 9 p.m. and Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m, Bond St. Social is at 59 Aguirre Avenue, BF Homes, Parañaque. Visit @bondstsocial on Instagram.
Fans of Pampanga-based Noble Barbers don't need to the drive all the way to the north as it already has a shop a little closer to home in Fairview. Noble Barbers is decked out in wood, steel, and concrete, all of which translates to an industrial yet polished feel. Its branches also carry a retail store with pomades and streetwear.
Book it: Open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Noble Barbers is at Fairlane corner Commonwealth Streets, Fairview, Quezon City and Pitstop Gas Station, Barangay Saguin, McArthur Highway, San Fernando City, Pampanga. Visit @noblebarbersph on Facebook and Instagram.
The Barberian Barbershop
Men in Alabang can count on a neighborhood barbershop as their refuge from life. Walk into The Barberian, have a drink at its whisky bar, pick a grooming service from the menu, and then sit down for your session. Whether you’re here for a standard cut, a full shave, or a beard trim, its services include a hot towel, a thorough massage, and a complimentary drink for an un-rushed experience.
Another Barbershop is a promising neighborhood concept in Poblacion. One of its co-owners, Oliver Sarabia, is a seasoned ad veteran who’s worked with brands like Redken for Men, so he's been around the (grooming) block and thus curates the products on the barbershop's shelves. Aside from a cut and shave, it offers hair and scalp treatments so you can walk out feeling refreshed.
Book it: Open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Another Barbershop is at 5880 Enriquez, Poblacion, Makati City. Visit @anotherbarbershop.poblacion on Facebook.
The Ilustrados Barbershop
Local retail store The Ilustrados has added a barbershop to its intimate and decidedly millennial space in White Plains. Dressed in white and adorned with foliage, this is like a second home for young men who like to 'gram.
Book it: Open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., The Illustrados is at 94 Katipunan Avenue, White Plains, Quezon City. Visit @theilustradosbarbershop on Instagram.
Hangar Fine Barbers
Aviation-themed barbershop Hangar Fine Barbers is designed to give you the full experience: Flight bar carts are used to deliver grooming products, wartime mementos decorate its space, and barber’s chairs look like airline seats. It also presents you with a “boarding pass” with your name and contact details, as well as your barber’s name, time of service, and a rundown of services and rates.
Foro dela Barberia
With the opening of Foro dela Barberia in Angeles City, it’s clear that Pampanga’s barber culture is thriving. The grooming and retail space focuses on your improvement with premium grooming experiences and trunk shows featuring brands such as Ibarra Watches, Masanting Sastreria, and Sapatero Manila.
Book it: Open Monday to Friday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Foro dela Barberia is at Unit 1, Block 7, Lot 4, Barangay Cutcut, Fil-Am Friendship Highway, Angeles City, Pampanga. Visit @forodelabarberia on Facebook and Instagram.
The Men's Pompadour Haircut, An Undying Style
One of the classic cuts that’s enjoying a resurgence, the pompadour is named after Madame de Pompadour, who was known for wearing her hair in a very high coiffure. In men’s hairstyles, the pompadour refers to hair combed up from the forehead. This style has figured heavily in rockabilly culture, sported by icons like Elvis Presley and James Dean. The traditional pomp has a low fade with no part, although other variations also feature hard parts and higher fades. Order one up from any of these best independent barbershops.