Old-fashioned Orlando barber shops offer classic cuts
Orlando is constantly building outlets to keep up with new; but old-fashioned barber shops are still in use, bringing back the old.
A classic cut and shave is always a plus, and barber shops in the Orlando area are showing off their skills.
"No Bullsh*t Barbering," is John Duvoisin's motto for his store, Liberty Barber Shop.
Along with this store located in Orlando's Milk District, Duvoisin also has a studio location where he handles private appointments. Both shops are full-service, multicultural barber shops.
"I was a picky, annoying barber shop customer when I was in high school. I just got sick of never getting what I wanted," Duvoisin said. "I was like, 'I'm just going to go to barber school just to prove all the barbers that messed my head up when I was in my late teens wrong.'"
Now, Duvoisin has been a barber for 12 years, and started Liberty seven years ago. As he gained experience, he quickly realized that it was difficult for him to find a place to work where he could welcome all ethnicities without being judged.
One of Duvoisin's jokes about the differences in the hairstylist and barber industries is that a hairstylist cuts hair that's about an inch long or longer. Barbers typically cut hair that's an inch long or shorter.
He said the haircuts that require function over form, such as gentlemen's haircuts and military haircuts, are the most popular cuts and never go out of style.
"We cater to all walks of life. Tons of UCF students because it's really not that far of a drive if you take the toll road. That's definitely the demographic," Duvoisin said.
Liberty Barber Shop is located on Primrose Avenue and open seven days per week from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
There is one barber shop in town that knows Orlando more than anyone else because they've been around longer than any other barber shop in the area.
Yates Barber Shop first opened in 1938 on Church Street. Since then, it has relocated to various locations including Goldenrod Road, and currently resides on East Colonial.
"We have pictures of our shop when Goldenrod was a dirt road. We had hitching posts on front of the barber shop because people literally rode their horses up to get their hair cut," said Edal "Cookie" Misevek, who has been with Yates since the 80s.
Tom Upton has been the owner of the store for 10 years and is the fourth owner of Yates Barber Shop. Both the barbers and the clientele are known for their loyalty.
The shop has antique bullhorns hanging above the chairs, reminding everyone of the old days. Frames line the walls with pictures of what the store used to look like, as well as old coupons from the 50s.
Each barber shop in town has its own spin on barbering and provides something unique to their costumers.
Clippers Barber Shop on Aloma Avenue inspires customers to look and feel their best.
"We provide a great environment for anybody to come in and just feel at home. You come in, you get greeted; that's just the way we do things here," said owner Jose Cruz.
Cruz knew at a young age that he wanted to open his own shop one day. He was born in Puerto Rico, then moved to Miami when he was 4 years old. At 16, he started charging people $5 for haircuts that he would do in his backyard.
"I already wanted to open my own business. I just didn't know how to get there. So what I did, I just followed the steps," Cruz said.
He then moved to Orlando where he got his barber license, and three years later he opened Clippers with just two barbers. Today, the store has 10 and plans to continue to grow.
The shop has TVs, music playing and friendly employees ready to do any haircut desired. It also provides old-fashioned, traditional hot-towel shaves. Prices vary anywhere from $7 for a shape up, to $16 for flat tops and afros.
Cruz is living his dream and encourages others to do whatever they can to make sure they do the same.
"You got to visualize yourself doing it, and then go after that vision; and have passion in what you do," he said. "Every day won't be a burden, it will be a hobby. And if it's a hobby, the hours don't matter because it's what you like to do."
Yates Barber Shop
7339 E. Colonial Drive #11
Regular haircuts: $10
Style cuts: $12
Flat top: $12
Fade with shave: $14
Liberty Barber Shop
49 N. Primrose Drive
Haircuts: starting at $14
Beard trims: starting at $10
Traditional hot-towel shaves: starting at $20
Clippers Barber Shop
3635 Aloma Ave., Oviedo
Regular cuts: $14
Fades, blowouts: $14
Scissor Cuts: $14
Flat Tops & afros: $16
Seniors and kids: $10
Designs: starting at $8
Shape Up: $7
Hot-towel shave: $10
Alexis Minieri is a contributing writer for the Central Florida Future.