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Customers bowled over by hairstylists’ look and skills
Published on: Tuesday, February 25, 2020
By: Balqis Jamaludin
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KUALA TERENGGANU:  Looking at the young men at a hair salon here, you would be forgiven for thinking they were models or flight attendants.

Good-looking, tall and looking sharp in uniforms, they are actually hairstylists at the premium branch of the Matt Barber Shop in Kuala Terengganu that has customers bowled over with their fancy skills.

Even the decor bears a modern and exclusive take thanks to its owner Mohd Yusof Taib, 38, who says the appearance of his hairstylists and the interior decor are a complete package that has been vital in setting apart his outlet from other hipster barbers that have mushroomed of late.

 “The hairstylists at this branch are hand-picked from the other Matt Barber outlets. They not only need to look sharp in their appearance, their skills are advanced too.

 “I also designed the uniform. This is to differentiate the premium outlet from the other Matt Barber branches,” he told Bernama recently.

The premium branch also provides a VIP room for customers who want more privacy in a relaxed and comfortable environment.

 “When I came up with a different concept for this premium branch a few years ago, the response was very encouraging. I realised that customers today do not want a regular barbershop. They want something different and are willing to pay more,” he says.

The premium branch provides a variety of hairdressing services for men of all ages, with prices ranging from RM10 to RM50.

Mohd Yusof’s interest in hairstyling began at an early age when he used to observe his parents cutting his hair and that of his siblings.

“I have eight siblings and five of us are male. If our parents had taken us for haircuts at least every fortnight, it would have been expensive so our parents decided to cut our hair themselves. From then on, I began to harbour hopes of opening my own shop someday,” says the eldest of the eight.

In 2006, Mohd Yusof began dabbling in the profession when he took on a haircutting job for three months before opening his own outlet in Wakaf Tebesu here.

However, it wasn’t all smooth sailing as he had to close his shop several times due to his lack of business know-how.

Fourteen years on, he is enjoying a successful business comprising 10 Matt Barber Shop outlets - these are two premium branches in Kuala Terengganu and in Kuantan, Pahang, and eight regular outlets in Kuala Terengganu and Kemaman.

With the tagline #andapastikacak (you surely look handsome), the Matt Barber Shop has 50 trained and experienced hairstylists including six and four respectively at the Kuala Terengganu and Kuantan premium outlets.

Kuala Terengganu-born Mohd Yusof ‘s passion also led him to open an academy called Akademi Matt Barber in 2016, to produce highly-skilled hairstylists.

Located in Padang Midin, the academy has awarded certificates to more than 100 trained individuals. It also conducts charity drives by sending its trainees to orphanages and religious and primary schools for practical training.

And yet, Mohd Yusof is not sitting on his laurels - he plans to open more branches across the country.

He is confident that his decision to take the hairstyling sector seriously is spot on as it has a future and will never go out of fashion.

 “Haircutting is a skill that is always sought after and cannot be sold online. Just look at countries like the United Kingdom with its hair salons showing how relevant the business is.

 “This is a field that cannot be copied. Only those who work hard to improve their skills will succeed,” he says. – Bernama



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