Essential grooming tips for the modern gentleman

The Dolce&Gabbana Barber in London dishes advice

Stefan Avanzato, the master barber who presides over the Barber in the Dolce&Gabbana Sartoria store in London’s Mayfair advises the modern gentleman on essential grooming.

There is no denying, that just like black, lace, a well tailored suit and perfectly shined shoes, a gentleman is never out of style. Dolce&Gabbana’s ideal gentleman is a modern interpretation of the age old persona, elegant, unique, sophisticated yet with a hint of eccentricity, who commands a room just with their presence. Innate qualities provide a base for the modern gentleman, like an innate sense of style and sophistication, yet, some other values may be acquired. Grooming for example, is an important part of the life of the modern gentleman, who chooses a style which reflects his own idiosyncrasies, yet relies on expert hands to create and maintain the look.

The Barber Shop which resides within the Dolce&Gabbana Sartoria boutique in New Bond Street in Mayfair, does just that. We got in touch with Stefan Avanzato, the master barber, who dispenses some valuable advice for the modern gentleman’s grooming routine, and how to maintain the chosen style between visits at the barber shop.

Let us start from the basics: can you advise a daily grooming routine for the modern gentleman?
Use a gentle soap to wash your face daily and a stronger scrub once a week to exfoliate your skin. Always moisturise your face down to your neck. It has become normal these days to sport stubble, which is easily kept tidy using your razor on your cheeks and your neck so that it never goes too high or too low. Shampoo and condition your hair often but do not overdo as this dries your hair and scalp. Depending on your hair length you should be washing 3-4 times a week.

Sometimes the modern gentleman is in a rush, so which steps are essential NEVER to skip?
Moisturising is a step that should never be skipped. It takes a second and it is best done after the shower.

How to tackle problem skin related to travel and jet lag?
Staying hydrated is probably most important. Drink plenty of water during the flight and give your face a quick wash in the toilet followed by some moisturiser. Pack some eye serum if you really want to reduce eye bags.

What are the steps to achieve the perfect at home shave?
The easiest and best moment to shave is right after a shower when your hair is still soft and pores are still open. It is also an easy way to avoid irritation on your skin. Make sure your razor is sharp and for more sensitive skin try to avoid shaving against the grain – it might give you a closer shave but it causes irritation and razor burn to your skin. Rinse your face with water, gently dry it with a clean towel and apply an after-shave balm or tonic.
How about those men who like to keep a beard, what is the best way to look after it?
Treat it like you do your hair. Shampoo, condition and shape with your hands or comb to keep it tidy. Make sure you have a good pair of scissors to trim around the edges and remove unruly hairs. It is also worth using beard specific oils or moisturisers to keep it lustrous and take care of the skin beneath.

Can you explain the difference between shaving soap, shaving foam and shaving oil? Which works best for what skin types or beard types?
Shaving soap is the most traditional of products available. You need to apply it with a brush using water. It is harder to get the right consistency unless you are an expert but it has the added benefit of helping exfoliate your skin. Soaps are the best choice when using a straight-razor. Foams are easy to use but they dry the skin so I wouldn’t recommend if yours is already dry or sensitive. They often come in aerosol cans which involve the use of harsh ingredients you wouldn’t want on your skin. A gel is a much better choice as it lubricates helping your skin stay smooth. Shaving oil helps soften your beard before you shave and it protects your skin. It helps the razor glide across the skin and so it reduces irritation.

Now let us move onto hair, what are the go to haircuts for 2016?
Quiffs are still going strong. This year we will see them getting more natural treatments. Products like clay can help you give it more texture and allowing it to move while keeping the sides and back sharper. We are also seeing a new trend of longer styles with two main influences – the 70’s (think Rolling Stones) and the 90’s. Long hair looks best with very little styling so a texturizing salt spray is the best option if you want to add just a bit of structure. During the latest edition of the menswear catwalks we also saw a new take on the wet look. It is essentially as easy as a slicked-back look but finished off with your fingers instead of a comb.

Do you have any tips to style the perfect quiff?
Use a sea salt spray on your hair while it is still wet and use a hair dryer to start giving it shape. Think of it as the foundations of your hairstyle. Use your fingers to apply your styling product and working it throughout before finishing it off.

Tell us about the most exclusive treatment you can ask for at the Dolce&Gabbana Barber
We offer a haircut and wet shave experience for that extra indulgence. This treatment provides everything; the classic shave includes incorporating a rejuvenating facial providing that extra touch of relaxation for the modern day gentleman. Find out more on one of our treatments here

What can you find at the Dolce&Gabbana Barber which you cannot find anywhere else?
We offer an elegant and relaxed atmosphere. Our barber shop brings together a traditional British flair with the flavour of traditional Italian barbering.

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