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Tools of the Trade

This month, I sharing a few of my favorite tools and products. Mostly, I keep it standard and simple by going with a trusted a brand. Having a trusted brand means you can count on certain features and specifications with each cut, but mostly, it means you can find what works for you. For me, lightweight clippers that come sharpened and adjusted out the box are my jam. I’m able to worry less about hardware and focus on deepening my skill set and trying out creative techniques. If we are real about it, the talent and the technique are what really drive how well any piece of equipment may or may not work when cutting hair. Yes. That was a little humble brag.


One word: Gamma.

Gamma plus clippers, the ERGO line, are lightweight and come sharpened out the box. I don’t make any adjustments. I rarely use razors and don’t need to do anything extra from the factory settings. The ERGO line feature a magnetic motor, which makes them quiet and fast.


I go traditional when it comes to my trimmers. I use old school T Outliners from Andis. They’re great for close cutting, fading, and getting that crispy, straight edge. What’s interesting about Andis, just as a brand, is that they’ve been around forever. Almost a hundred years! It makes them kind of like OG clippers. They do tend to be a bit heavier than the Gammas, but I still use them for some taper and line work.


I’m not sponsored by any particular brand (hint, hint), so what I use varies depending on what I’d like to try and whatever is working in the moment. It’s mostly about what I’m noticing my clients need for their hair to be healthy—clean, moisturized, strong.

I use, and sell, Hydration shampoo by Straight Request. I like it because it helps prevents breakage and is gentle on color treated hair. It also detangles, which is good for working with natural hair. The Black Carbon shampoo, also by Straight Request, features activated charcoal that is excellent for underlying scalp conditions. It removes toxins and treats eczema. It’s a great shampoo for repairing damaged hair.

For that finishing shine, I use good ole Afro Sheen, a product that actually just made a big comeback from being popular in the 90’s. Afro Sheen spray gives hair that moisturized shine while keeping the hair soft and natural. I try to avoid using anything that is going to make your hair stiff or flaky. Afro Sheen is like a Black hair tradition. I’m here for it.

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