You’ve heard it said that fashion is fleeting but style is eternal, and it is certainly true that there are a handful of long-acknowledged grooming rules that can never let you down — namely, that a wet shave will always beat a dry one, and a traditional barber will always do a better job of it.
Sure, a dry shave can be convenient – a quick whizz over the face with an electric shaver can be a godsend if you’re running late. But, with this buzz of electric blades comes the ever-present threat of razor rash or patches missed altogether and, of course, if you’re bearded this simply isn’t an option. Here at Gentleman’s Journal, we’re always on the side of the wet shave – especially if you can employ an expert to do it for.
So, without further ado, we bring to your attention six of the best traditional barbers in London for the ultimate wet shave.
Geo. F. Trumper
One for the true traditionalist, Geo. F. Trumper has been grooming the great and good of London since 1875. A traditional wet shave with hot towels and face massage is one of the most relaxing experiences known and one for which Trumper is rightly famous. Gentlemen can also come here to indulge in a range of treatments, from manicures to facials. And, if you’re looking to learn a few tricks of the trade, the barbers here offer a Shaving School, with either a cartridge or open razor, for those wishing to learn correct shaving technique from the masters. Learn more here.
Offering classic barber services such as the wet shave, hair re-styles and beard re-shaping, Murdock has adopted and adapted the grand traditions of the old St James barber shops to ensure the modern, style-conscious gentleman remains impeccably well-groomed.
Every day is different in this city, but Murdock believes that its years of delivering quality can offer a welcome constant in the London man’s life — with a string of salons all across the capital. Alongside this, on your way out after a trim, you can stock up on the barber’s award-winning grooming products.
Truefitt & Hill
We’ve already waxed lyrical about the regal services available at Truefitt & Hill but its expert barbers certainly know their way around some of the nation’s most important barnets. The host of significant heads that have been primped, trimmed and tapered over the years in its St. James barber shop has even earned it a royal warrant — so it’s safe to say it knows a thing or two about world-class grooming.
For a festive refresher, why not book in for the Ultimate Grooming Experience? Comprising of a Traditional Hot Towel Wet Shave, Facial Treatment, Haircut/Shampoo and Manicure this service, which lasts one and a half hours, it will ensure you leave ultimately groomed to face any challenges the day has to offer. Learn more here.
Part speakeasy, part gentleman’s club, the Pankhurst barbershop is a haven of masculinity just off Carnaby St. Each of its bespoke barbers’ chairs has been hand upholstered by the leather craftsmen at Bentley motors, making them among the most sumptuous chairs in which to sit back for a shave or a trim.
Step into this luxurious salon and help yourself to a drink at the Johnnie Walker whisky lounge, or simply listen to the handpicked soundtrack from the beautiful Naim Audio stereo. Let the signature bay rum and lime scent of Pankhurst’s famous products mingle with the aroma of the whisky in your glass — then allow the experts to handle the rest. Learn more here.
The Barber at Alfred Dunhill
Beyond the cigar smoke on the Cellar Bar terrace lies the genius that is the Alfred Dunhill Barber. Decked out in all manner of quirky bits and bobs, including old books and a metal stetson, every appointment here comes with a thorough client consultation as standard, and they offer all the essential masculine maintenance treatments in a relaxing environment.
Offering both traditional and modern grooming services, it’s not hard to see why this place is a gentleman’s favourite. Learn more.
Still undecided? Here’s why a wet shave will always beat a dry shave…