The Esquire Review: Dunhill barbershop in Dubai Mall
When it comes to grooming, I’m very much of the opinion that simplicity is always best.
For example, when asked, “how would you like your hair cut” my general response is: “short”.
“Would you like an espresso? How about some polite conversation, sir?” The answer to both is a simple sideways shake of the head. I’m not here to have fun. I am here to manage the results of what is a biological necessity; humans are hairy, hair grows quickly (and looks untidy if not cared for), hence it must be lopped off.
And as with all monotonous chores I must now contend with (taking out the trash, washing the dishes, arguing with Lorraine from the accounts department) to call myself an adult, they work best when they are over quickly.
However, this point of view is very much at odds with the folks at Dubai’s newest barbershop (which is secreted away inside the new Dunhill boutique in Dubai Mall). They believe that grooming should be an experience; hot towels, moisturizing face creams and all the rest.
Naturally, I went down to prove them wrong.
Dunhill barbershop Dubai Mall – where the heck is it?
It’s a bit weird walking into a posh boutique to have your hair cut. You’re at your most shaggy and unkempt before you visit a barber, which makes walking past the polished clothes and manikins of the recently renovated boutique a bit of an experience itself.
Nonetheless, the boutique staff are pretty good at spotting those who have walked through the doors looking to purchase expensive clothing versus the dishevelled-haired masses. As such, barbershop visitors are quickly whisked away to the centre of the store and into one of two rooms.
Inside, you’ll find all the modern barbershop staples: a big old-school leather chair, a collection of bottles and creams, as well as that weird blue goo that sits next to the mirror in every barbershop in the world (do they know what it is? Does anyone?)
Dunhill barbershop Dubai Mall – what happens?
Skipping over the bit where the barber asks how you how you want the mop on the top of your head cut (this is typical of any barbershop visit, you know how conversations work) the cutting of the hair begins. And while I am no expert in the hairy arts, I can say one thing for certain; there was an awful lot of concentration involved.
The barber looked like he was planning the moon landings (as opposed to just studying the back of my furry head) and once his calculations were made, he was off. But not in the typical ‘get the clippers out and start buzzing’ fashion. He took his time.
He primped and preened my noggin’ for a good forty-five minutes - not a single follicle escaped his considered gaze - before turning his attention to my beard. Two hot towels, a cream, a cut-throat razor, and another cream later and what stared back at me from the mirror was barely recognizable.
And not in a bad way.
Dunhill barbershop Dubai Mall – how’s the hair?
The barbershop inside the Dunhill boutique represents an evolution over most men’s typical haircut. It’s not quick and it’s not cheap, but it is very good. It’s a proper experience and one that even I – with my proclivity to getting shorn and shaven as quickly as possible – enjoyed.
For me, getting a haircut has always been a necessary evil. This place takes that evil, wraps it up in a soft warm towel then gives it an unexpected head massage (followed by a spritz of Dunhill fragrance).