Philadelphia and the Countryside - Press Room

Releases: Expanded View

Jul 13 2016

Philly Offers A Fresh Update On Old-School Barbershops

A Young Bunch Of City Barbers Offer Close Shaves & Cool Cuts

Used to be when a guy needed a shave or a haircut, he had to choose: Book an appointment at a unisex salon or take his chances at a grandfatherly barbershop. That’s not the case anymore—at least not for guys in Philly. These days, the city is full of tonsorialists—that’s vintage speak for barbers—who pull off skillful styles in old-fashioned shops. Execs seeking subtle shags, students going for a clean crop and grooms getting their first straight-razor shave can all rest easy, knowing they have a bevy of awesome Philly barbers from which to choose. Here’s where to start:

Center City:

  • 2B Groomed – Barber Jahmal Rhaney looked to the 1940s and 50s for inspiration when opening his walk-up shop in 2003. Today, his vintage-feeling business services all manner of men’s grooming needs, starting with scissor and razor cuts and extending into skincare for stubborn bumps, goatee trims, steam facials, straight-razor shaves and beard coloring. Also on tap: a full slate of grooming products, including St. James of London—and a complimentary shoe shine from the buffing machine with every service. In 2012, USA Today named 2B Groomed in its online list of “10 great places to get a shave and a haircut.” 270 S. 11th Street, (215) 925-3505,
  • Barbershop Denim – A modern take on the classic barbershop, this west-of-Broad spot caters to both longtime and new customers with walk-in hours extending into the early evening. Groomsmen gathering for pre-wedding beard trims can relax in the homey, man cave atmosphere. 1517 South Street, (267) 930-3980
  • Blokes Barbershop & Gentleman’s Emporium – Sure, men hit up this Old City spot for haircuts and straight-razor shaves, but they also frequent it for Blokes’ grooming products, books, jewelry, candles, hats and other accessories. Duke Dunne runs the barber side of the business; his wife Jill Ervais helms the retail side. 151 N. 3rd Street, (267) 314-5557,
  • City Barber – This Jewelers’ Row shop boasts an old-fashioned look and a time-honored approach to hair, from little kids to mature fellows. The classic rotating pole announces the venue, filled with black leather chairs, marble counters, gold-frame mirrors and combs soaking in jars of Barbicide. A menu of standards includes shaves, color and cuts, with a focus on skin fade side parts.136 S. 8th Street, (267) 324-3119,
  • Fine Shaves & Cuts – No-nonsense barbers set up shop in Washington West with this to-the-point establishment, known for speedy, impeccable, affordable hair and beard trims and styles for men and boys. 131 S. 10th Street, (215) 995-2331,
  • Gents Barber Lounge – A place where gentlemen can get cuts and hot lather shaves, this second-floor Old City spot offers both classic razor parts and modern mohawks. Additionally, betrothed gents can take advantage of a number of bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) groomsmen packages, which include snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. 45 N. 3rd Street, (267) 800-2873,
  • Groom – Center City old-timers remember the below-ground venue of Joe McMenamin’s retro-modern shop as belonging to local fixture Harry Fini, known for his no-nonsense buzz cuts. Today, the old space has undergone a gentle update and now accommodates an eight-person staff of clippers justly lauded for their by-appointment-only gentleman’s cuts, Boardwalk Empire-style pompadours, textured summer cuts, flat-top boogies and Ivy League styles. Cash only. 1324 Locust Street, lower level, (215) 545-2626,
  • The King of Shave – This self-proclaimed “old-school barbershop” offers haircuts, traditional straight-razor shaves, beard and mustache trimmings and coloring services by Diego Rivera. Located on quaint Antique Row, the appointment-preferred spot offers a relaxing setting—thanks in part to the constantly streaming Argentine music—for wedding parties and guys who simply want to look their best. 1201 Pine Street, (215) 732-2900,
  • Nic Grooming – Nick Berardi and his sons Joey and Nicky are devoted to the craft of old-school barbering and to their motorcycle collection. Naturally, a rotating hog graces the window of their walk-in only Rittenhouse barbershop. Also greeting patrons, who may opt for cuts, straight-razor shaves and facials: exposed-brick walls, a flat-screen TV, vintage barber tools displayed as art, craft beer and beverages, three barber chairs and a relaxed vibe. 267 S. 20th Street, (215) 732-7767,
  • Racquet Club of Philadelphia Barber Shop – Guys don’t have to be squash-playing members of this century-old sporting club to take advantage of its marvelously throwback, third-floor salon. But they do need to make an appointment to enter this classic, clubby gentlemen’s refuge, long accustomed to satisfying discriminating businessmen with the basics, including a $20 cut. 215 S. 16th Street, (215) 772-1542
  • T.R.I.M. – An acronym for “Tradition Restored in Men,” this shop shares second floor space with expert tailor Henry A. Davidsen. Patrons seated in handmade chairs expect the same type of customized luxury services they receive from the showroom below, courtesy of crisply outfitted barbers who specialize in straight-razor shaves, and have become known for simultaneously sprucing up discerning groomsmen the day of a wedding. 1701 Spruce Street, 2nd floor, (267) 908-5334,

East Passyunk & South Philadelphia:

  • Basement Barber Co. – Located in what is actually a ground floor space, this neighborhood establishment boasts a diverse clientele and specializes in all hair types. Patrons can expect precision cuts, razor shaves, fades and good conversation in this laid back, family-friendly shop. 1227 Tasker Street, (267) 250-8979
  • Faheem’s Hands of Precision – Master barber Faheem Alexander grew up in the South Philly barbershop of his mentor, Jazz. Today, Alexander employs four barbers at his own spot, where shaves, mustache and beard trims and cuts are a serious matter of pride. Twice a week, the boss travels to NYC make the domes and beards of The Roots crew ready for live, high-definition television. 2100 Snyder Avenue, (215) 271-7098,
  • Meister’s – Vintage barber chairs and rustic wood finishes give this South Philly shop its distinct look. Owner Rob Baumiester’s near-namesake is a recent addition to the neighborhood, with an array of services that include trims and straight razor shaves. The handsome location also retails tonics, texture creams, pomade, beard wash, balms and oils. 1810 E. Passyunk Avenue, (215) 309-3169,\

Fishtown/Northern Liberties:

  • Ed’s Barber Shoppe – With high and tights, pompadours, Ivy Leagues and fades among the offerings, this Fishtown spot is well versed in old-school styles. Patrons frequent Ed Torres’ friendly place not only for the looks; they’re also fans of the walk-in appointments and inexpensive pricing. 600 E. Girard Avenue, (215) 426-4120,
  • Sulimay’s – Third- and fourth-generation barbers Joe Sulimay and son Marc Uscher aren’t known only for the comforting, tried-and-true cuts and shaves they give to hipsters, politicians and regular neighborhood types alike. They’re also known as some of the nicest fellas in Fishtown. Cash only. 303 E. Girard Avenue, (215) 426-9919,

Philadelphia Proper:

  • ESPM Hair Zone – A classic barbershop pole, exposed brick, antique mirrors and flat-screen TVs throughout the space give this nine-year-old, seven-day-a-week West Philly shop its established-yet-sporty vibe. Popular for cutting black hair, this spot is known for taking care of “the Philly beard,” a full, often long look originally worn by local Muslims who call the traditional facial hair a “Sunnah.” 5929 W. Girard Avenue, (215) 747-3931,
  • MADE Barber Parlor – Philly native Darien Hilliard has been cutting hair for more than a decade. His rugged four-chair operation, located in a renovated old mill complex in the city’s East Falls section, keeps busy doing traditional fades and clips. Lofts at Scotts Mills, 3510 Scotts Lane, building 30, (215) 688-2412
  • The Men’s Club Barbershop – Chairs lined up on a city porch and that telltale red, white and blue pole announce this old-fashioned yet hip (read: color camo available) Roxborough business where walk-ins and booked-online appointments are equally welcome. Shampoos are free, when there’s time, and a haircut will set you back a mere 20 minutes and $20. 7617 Ridge Avenue, (215) 483-1831,

Multiple Locations:

  • The Art of Shaving’s Barber Spa – The well-known American men’s skincare line chose Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square neighborhood and the region’s eminent King of Prussia Mall as locations for its trademark Barber Spa. Inside the retail shops, clients can avail themselves of haircuts, head shaves, moustache trims and indulgent packages such as their popular “Royal Shave,” a 45-minute treatment that involves hot shaving cream, a with- and against-the-grain straight razor shave, lemon oil-infused hot towels and aftershave mask, toner and balm. 1528 Walnut Street, (215) 875-6702; The Plaza at King of Prussia Mall, 160 N. Gulph Road, King of Prussia, (610) 962-1000,
  • Burke & Payne Barber Co. – In February 2013, the Italian Market’s former Sarcone’s Deli reopened with antique barber chairs, a black-and-white tile floor, exposed bricks and an 80-year-old barber pole that creates the ultimate new-school meets old-school corner shop, where a traditional men’s cuts runs $30. Owner Michael Burke has a similar eight-year-old operation across town called Barber on 24th. Burke & Payne, 900 Fitzwater Street, (215) 922-0299; Barber on 24th, 2401 Lombard Street, (215) 732-7797
  • The Duke Barber Co. – Fifth-generation tonsorialist William Brown runs operations at his two ruggedly hip retreats, one in Northern Liberties and a second in Chestnut Hill. Patrons at either location can expect to find a TV-outfitted bar and a retail space that vends Egyptian alabaster ashtrays and soap dishes, J.S. Sloane hair clays and Maestro’s Beard Butter. Cuts are precise. Executive shaves include facials. But best yet: Each patron gets a pint of locally brewed seasonal Yards beer, or on “Whiskey Fridays,” a glass of Jameson. Both spots are justly popular for bachelor and pre-wedding get-togethers and also offer drop-off watch and shoe repair. Northern Liberties, 619 N. 2nd Street, (267) 519-0042; Chestnut Hill, 7946 Germantown Avenue, (215) 247-2740,
  • Shaving Grace Barbers/Upper Cuts Barbershop – With an original, bare-bones location called Upper Cuts in East Falls and two more luxurious, lounge-like versions in suburban Exton and Doylestown dubbed Shaving Grace, these venues offer the most basic of razor cuts to the most posh of spa services. The city venue is the place to pay $15 (cash only) for a quick trim. The Exton location, tricked out with leather couches and private spa rooms, offers full-body massages, waxing, manicures, pedicures and bundled services, in addition to the standard shaves and cuts. Upper Cuts, 3471 Ainslie Street, (215) 844-5159; Shaving Grace, 345 E. Lincoln Highway, Exton, (610) 524-6977, 41 E. State Street, Doylestown,
    (267) 620-2005,
  • Style of Man – This crisp, modern local mini-chain of men’s salons caters to guys who prefer to get their cuts, color, shaves, waxes, manicures and scalp massages among men—but by women. The Liberty Place shop offers extended morning hours for fellas who want to get groomed before work. All four destinations keep evening hours. Shops at Liberty Place, 1625 Chestnut Street, (215) 561-2887; 4448 Main Street, (215) 487-2820; 108½ Fayette Street, Conshohocken, (484) 351-8055; 65 E. Lancaster Avenue, Paoli, (484) 329-7544,

VISIT PHILADELPHIA® is our name and our mission. As the region’s official tourism marketing agency, we build Greater Philadelphia’s image, drive visitation and boost the economy.

On Greater Philadelphia’s official visitor website and blog, and, visitors can explore things to do, upcoming events, themed itineraries and hotel packages. Compelling photography and videos, interactive maps and detailed visitor information make the sites effective trip-planning tools. Along with Visit Philly social media channels, the online platforms communicate directly with consumers. Travelers can also call and stop into the Independence Visitor Center for additional information and tickets.

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