Hawick’s Rachel proves she can cut it at hairdressing contest

Rachel Casson, 21, of Hawick, displays her wet-shaving technique.
Rachel Casson, 21, of Hawick, displays her wet-shaving technique.
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A Hawick barber has been crowned Scottish champion after proving she can cut it in a national competition to find Britain’s best wet-shaving barber.

Rachel Casson, a member of staff at the Italian Job Barbershop in Galashiels, fended off razor-sharp competition from 10 other barbers at a regional final, held at the Salon Services store in Gateshead in north east England.

Rachel in action at Gateshead.

Rachel in action at Gateshead.

The 21-year-old, of Hawick, impressed the contest’s judges with her shave preparation, razor technique, post-shave routine, health and safety and overall efficiency.

The competition, organised by men’s grooming brand the Bluebeards Revenge and the British Barbers’ Association, is now in its fourth year, and it saw a huge increase in the number entrants this time round.

An apprentice of previous winner Luigi Caterino, Rachel said she was thrilled to have followed in his footsteps to secure the coveted Scottish title.

She explained: “I finished my hairdressing college course in June 2016 and started working with Luigi.

“He has taught me everything about barbering, and we decided together that the Britain’s Best Shave competition can be an amazing experience to see what level I’m at and meet some amazing barbers from around the country.

“I can’t believe I’ve secured this prestigious title, and it should only help me to improve as a barber.

“I’m already looking forward to defending my title in 2018.”

Sadly, Rachel narrowly failed to make the cut for the national final of the competition at Barber UK on Sunday, May 21, after coming ninth in the overall scoring of the regional winners, only the top eight scoring barbers being invited to attend the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre event.

David Hildrew, managing director of Devon-based Bluebeards Revenge, said: “Each year, we are blown away by the level of talent out there, and this year is no exception.

“This year looks set to be a tough fought battle.”

Andrew Brewster, a spokesman for the competition’s media partner, Barber Evo magazine, added: “BarberEvo Magazine is very proud to be a supporter of Britain’s Best Shave.

“The art of traditional wet shaving has long been synonymous with the term barbering.”

“It’s fantastic to see the craft not only preserved but also celebrated after a recent resurgence.

“The quality of work on display throughout Britain’s Best Shave is further testament to the UK industry being at the forefront of the barbering movement.”