For most men, there's nothing like a trip to the barbershop. Hair can be an important aspect of our identity. Although we often tend to get the same haircut that we settled on some time ago, the barbershop is one of the only places where men have always been encouraged to be engaged in expressing ourselves via our appearance. Louisville has a few great barbershops. Let's take a look.
DERBY CITY CHOP SHOP
1233 BARDSTOWN RD, 502-632-2467 1100 E BURNETT AVE, 502-916-4064
Although it’s not necessarily always a compliment to call something “hip,” this Highlands joint embodies that in its best sense. It's the place to go if you want a pompadour, ducktail, or a high and tight not unlike what Elvis wore when he got drafted. The shop screams Rock & Roll from floor to ceiling with a 50’s feel and wild wall art... and that’s before you even kick up the jukebox. It’s rarely a quick trip, with a line often stretching out the door, but the staff tends to be so quick witted and jovially entertaining that it's worth your time if you have time to kill. There's also now a second location in Germantown, lightening the load and wait times considerably.
305 WALLACE AVE, 502-896-9276
This St. Matthew’s institution has been around since 1950, serving generations of dapper men. You walk into the mirror lined room, take a number, have a seat, and wait your turn to climb into one of the several barber chairs. Glass cases contain relics of yesteryear, including long-forgotten tonics and accouterments that your grandfather might have sworn by. If you want to have the full experience of what it was like to visit a barber back in the time so many barbershops like to try to recapture, this is the place for you.
4600 SHELBYVILLE RD #302, 502-883-0786 2346 FRANKFORT AVE, 502-895-1956
Although not a barbershop, NOVA Sa- lon offers a full line of haircare products that owner and founder Bennie Pollard created just for guys. Gage for Men offers the full gamut, including shampoos, conditioners, and multiple styling products for various styles. NOVA Salon provides personalized Image Profiles to design your expert haircut, and for those rogue eyebrow hairs, they also offer eyebrow waxing. The salon has won two NAHA awards, an honor that has been described as the Oscars of the beauty industry. You can visit the salon at either their Shelbyville Road or Frankfort Avenue locations.
BEARDS AND BEERS
514 S 5TH ST, 502-996-7999
This downtown spot is best known for their precision cuts, beards trims, and hot lather shaves but what keeps people coming back is the environment. You can enjoy a craft beer as you socialize before or after you climb into the chair. The staff is split almost evenly between women and men— the folks there know that being a barber isn’t a gender, it’s a career. They also offer a range of special products, including the ever-popular Beards and Beers beard balm, made for sensitive skin.
A barber must be someone you trust. Along with helping us to maintain the way we look, they can often become good friends, confidants, and even de facto therapists.
966 BAXTER AVE, 502-365-3541
Situated on Baxter in the Highlands near the point when you start to enter Nulu, Woody's is an underrated location to get your head high and tight without much fuss by one of several men's men. They serve by appointment or walk-ins, but you can generally expect to get in and out rather quick either way. The barbers there can give you solid advice on which kind of products to use for your hair type and what you wish to achieve, whether you require pomade or a gel.
18'8 FINE MEN’S SALON
1301 HERR LN #160, 502-257-0077
A high-end location in Westport Vil- lage, 18'8 is the shop if you're extremely particular and want to look just right. The staff serve a clientele that tends to be repeat customers and they are well known for always going the extra dis- tance to get your look completely perfect. When you walk out, your style is sure to be right on point.
HIGHLAND BEAUTY AND BARBER
2425 BARDSTOWN RD, 502-456-9200
With a carefully designed retro feel complete with black and white checkered floor and mid-century modern art, Highland Beauty and Barber offers you not just a haircut, but an experience. You will be treated like royalty with good conversation, complimentary coffee and other drinks, and a spectacular environment. The attention to detail in the decor is only rivaled by the at- tention to detail in the service you receive.
FADES AND BLADES
8107 LA GRANGE RD, 502-565-9416
An affordable price and a timeless haircut, that’s what Fades and Blades is all about. This La Grange Road shop is a place you will find a master barber who can not only give you exactly what you want, but can also offer some expert advice and insightful suggestions based on your type of hair, the shape of your face, and your personal sense of style.
3592 SPRINGHURST BLVD, 502-412-1505
Occupying a carefully curated environment, Springhurst Boulevard’s Gentleman’s Cut offers a range of services including massage, hand and foot repair, skin care, and hair removal, in addition to some truly superb haircut services. Depending on what you need, you can receive a very fairly priced express cut or an executive gentleman’s cut, consisting of a style consultation, shampoo and conditioning, an aroma steamed towel, and a neck and scalp massage. Altogether, it’s an absolute all in one experience.
11770 SHELBYVILLE RD #103, 502-409-3132
Handsome Fellows offers precision haircuts, straight razor shaves, and beard trims in what they call “a traditional, modern-rustic space.” The location has been a barbershop since the 1970’s when it was called the Village Squire, today the original tin sign from back then, sits inside a glass case inside the shop and the chairs still retain their original ashtrays. It doesn’t get too much more authentic than that.