A cut above: The best barbers in London

Ellie Goodman

8 March 2022

Stay sharp with Luxury London’s guide to the best barbershops in the capital

8 March 2022 | Ellie Goodman

I

s there any relationship more vital than that between a man and his barber? Founded on a dynamic of trust and respect, the barbershop offers a sanctuary in which men can relax and take pleasure in being pampered, all while shaping their style. So it’s all the more important that your barber is the right barber for you. Whether you’re in need of a quick trim, tidy-up or full wet-shave, or are on the hunt for a truly relaxing head-to-toe treatment, these are the best barbers in London.

Truefitt and Hill, St James’s

Walking into the wood-panelled splendour of Truefitt & Hill, you would be forgiven for thinking you had entered one of St James’s private gentlemen’s clubs. But what else would you expect from the capital’s longest-standing barbershop? Established in 1805 and name-dropped by both Dickens and Thackeray, the barbering institution holds a coveted Royal Warrant and counts the likes of Cary Grant, Laurence Olivier and Winston Churchill among its former clientele.

Offering manicures, massages and facials, alongside the classic wet shave and trim, Truefitt & Hill, though traditional in appearance, caters to every modern grooming need. For a taste of true luxury, opt for the Ultimate Grooming Experience, which encompasses a haircut and shampoo, traditional hot towel wet shave, manicure and facial massage. Nostalgic, rather than stuffy, an appointment at this heritage hairdresser’s is a welcome step back in time.

71 St James’s Street, SW1A 1PH, truefittandhill.co.uk

Ned’s Barbershop, City of London

In an intimate corner of private member’s club and five-star hotel The Ned, away from the noise of its bars and restaurants, sits Ned’s Barbershop, a speakeasy-style salon offering a plethora of pampering treatments to hotel guests, club members and Ned Friends. The options here are expansive, ranging from the classic back and sides and traditional wet shave, to express facials, threading and subtle wash-in colour treatments to disguise any pesky greys – the barbers even offers a 15-minute shoeshine service, so you can be sure you’ll leave looking sharp from head to toe.

The Ned, 27 Poultry, EC2R 8AJ, thened.com

Ruffians, across London

Founded in 2012 in Edinburgh’s West End, Ruffians quickly garnered major acclaim for its friendly customer service, exquisite interior design and creative barbering finesse. Making the move down south just a year later to open its flagship in Covent Garden, Ruffians has since launched outlets in Marylebone, Shoreditch and the menswear department of Liberty. Intent on making customers feel welcome and relaxed while championing its Scottish heritage, the contemporary barbers offers a range of complimentary tipples from its coffee and whisky bars, so your haircut, beard trim or cut-throat shave will never feel like a chore.

Across London, ruffians.co.uk

Pall Mall Barbers, across London

The barber of choice for Prince William, Pall Mall Barbers has been tending to London’s hirsute gents for more than 125 years and boasts a team with over 500 years of combined expertise. So it’s safe to say they know what they’re doing. With branches in Fitzrovia, Westminster, Paddington, Bishopsgate and King’s Cross, the award-winning barbershop’s curated menu, including an array of hair styling, beard maintenance and shaving treatments, ensures you’re well cared for with high-quality service from beginning to end.

Across London, pallmallbarbers.com

The Refinery, Mayfair

Not merely a simple barbershop, The Refinery offers a vast array of grooming treatments designed to refine from head to toe. Offering much more than your local barbers, a visit to the Mayfair emporium promises everything from a classic cut and colour or simple shave, to mani-pedis, manscaping and medispa treatments like cryolipolysis. Boasting all the latest and greatest in men’s premium grooming trends (think: CO2 facials and Cryolistic full-body massages), The Refinery offers a 360-degree experience that rivals any of London’s day spas.

18 Grosvenor Street, W1K 4QQ, the-refinery.com

Murdock, across London

With outposts in Soho, Shoreditch and Covent Garden, Murdock offers a contemporary take on the traditional barbershop experience, founded on the basis of the mutual trust and respect between a man and his barber. As well as the shop’s extensive treatment range, which encompasses everything from a 15-minute beard trim to a Full Service treatment package for an indulgent grooming experience, Murdock offers its own range of barber-made grooming products to help you care for your new ‘do long after you leave.

Across London, murdocklondon.com

Avanzato Grooming Lounge, Mayfair

Tucked away in a Duke Street basement in the heart of Mayfair, Avanzato Grooming Lounge brings a creative Italian flair to traditional British barbering. Established in 2018, the barber has swiftly become one of the most popular in the capital, owing to its team’s vast experience and commitment to their craft. The barber's treatment menu spans everything from a simple beard trim and tidy up to waxing treatments and facials. Opt for a hairdo overhaul with the New You service, dutifully carried out by the founder himself, or pop in for the luxury cleansing shave, which incorporates a range of essential oils, hot and cold towels.

73 Duke Street, W1K 5NR, avanzatogroominglounge.com

Joe & Co, Soho

Committed to offering the best haircut, wet shave and beard trim in Soho, Joe & Co has been grooming Londoners in the know for over a decade. The highly-skilled team of hairdressers, handpicked by owner and celebrity hairstylist Joe Mills, are there to offer expert advice and guidance, regardless of whether you’re looking to overhaul your style or are just popping in for a trim. Attention to detail is key here, with each classic, creative or modern cut tailored to the aesthetic, lifestyle and habits of every client. Expect all the bells and whistles of a traditional barber with the laid-back, easy atmosphere of your friend’s front room, beer and banter included.

26 Peter Street, W1F 0AH, joeandco.net

Pankhurst, Mayfair

Located in the Thom Sweeney Townhouse just off Savile Row, Pankhurst is a self-proclaimed haven of masculinity. Featuring bespoke barber’s chairs, hand upholstered by the leather craftsmen at Bentley, this charming, intimate space is the perfect location to sit back, relax and be thoroughly pampered. With more than 25 years of experience, including hairstyling credits for classic Brit-flicks Snatch and Layer Cake, boss Brent Pankhurst is one of the most sought-after barbers in London, as much for his men’s style know-how as his barbering expertise.

24c Old Burlington Street, W1S 3AU, pankhurstlondon.com

Read more: The best hairdressers in London