Best Barbershop

1. American Traditional Barber Shop 23 E. 11th Ave. 541-915-9613. Facebook.com/AmericanTraditionalBarbershop.

2. Tim’s Trims 27 W. 5th Ave. 541-393-6312. TimsTrims.com. 

3. Blessings Hair Design 315 E. 13th Ave. 541-344-2994. BlessingsHairDesign.com. 

Brooklyn Damon opened American Traditional Barber Shop in 2014 to get out of the bartending world. He says it was an easy transition because in the bars people would have drunk debates and in a barbershop — well, the debates are still there, but they’re somewhat sober at least. And he says the hospitality mentality is similar, too. A good environment for a haircut is to try and get people to forget about life while in the chair, Damon says. The easiest way to make that happen is with a beer or a shot of liquor — or a nonalcoholic drink. 

Damon says he wants to make people feel welcome and safe. When the pandemic hit, he says he was the first shop to close down and didn’t reopen until the county’s Phase 2. Although Damon didn’t get government COVID relief, he says he didn’t raise prices, either. Despite the changes in the barbershop (like a beard trimming hiatus due to mask wearing), the barbershop has had 2,300 haircuts and zero COVID-19 positive cases. The shop has lost some clients after it put up a Black Lives Matter sign, but Damon says it’s important to make people feel safe. 

A welcoming barbershop is a place where hair is just hair, he adds, and he’s trying to keep it open for the community. “At the end of the day, it wasn’t about making all this money,” Damon says. “It was the people.”

Author: Henry Houston