Heritage Series T-Shirts Available NOW!


We are proud to introduce the Barber Heritage Series t-shirts. Our fist t-shirt  features the legendary Theo A. Kochs tm. The shirt is available in small-XXL, colors: maroon with cream printing or navy blue with white printing. The t-shirts will be limited and we are open to collaborations.

Shirt: Gildan Ultra Cotton 2000, 6 oz, 100% cotton, Navy or Maroon
Price $19.99 plus shipping, add $2 for XXL.

To purchase click here!

navy_kochs-website maroon_kochs-website



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“Life Comes Full Circle” Barber Shop Film Release!

“Quick lil history lesson for all you up and coming barbers out there across the world who vimeo-ccbs-posterthink it’s hip and cool, and are lucky enough to be tattooed with a good job; Eric Webb and his mentor Jake were the first two dudes out of Southern California in the early 90’s to introduce the ‘look and style’ of today’s “tattooed barber” movement across the world! He might just be the reason you became a barber without you even knowing it!”
Tim co-owner of Syndicate Barber Shop in Long Beach, CA

EXCLUSIVE interview with barber icon Eric Webb. Eric is one of two men who set the pace for the Traditional Barber Revival in Southern California that has now spread around the globe.

Eric and Phil Hernandez have created an amazing shop in Orange, California that is only a few steps away from the founder of the traditional tattooed barbering movement, Jake Bricks, original shop. Although, Eric does not seek fame or prestige and his humility in the profession of barbering is a rarity.

We also included interviews with Wolfman barber, Local Barber Hirakawa from Japan and Barber Harley from South Korea! Watch them discuss the influence of American Barbering on their culture and the consequences of being tattooed barbers in their countries. This is a super rare interview that you don’t want to miss and wont find anywhere else.

To watch the full 40 min film and trailer click here
Use Promo code: JakeBricks15
for 15% off

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Barbers Terrorize The Public!

Exactly 137 years ago this article was published in the New York Times. It was believed barbers terrorize headline with datethat barbers use their position of influence over a patron to gain his favor and get whatever they want. It could be getting a job for a friend or influencing social policy. The barber had power and the power was persuasion over the patron that sat in their chair. In the writers mind this was, “terrorism”.

According to the article 78% of the insane asylum patients were in the habit of being shaved by barbers before they became insane and “if this does not mean that to be shaved by a barber is to incur the risk of being barber following patrontalked into madness statistics have no meaning .”

The article concludes by stating that a barber uses his power of persuasion and gift of gab to sell grooming products and that he is able to break a man in order for him to purchase the product “the sale of tonic in the city alone during the period from 1864-1875 was so great that no man who wishes to maintain a reputation for veracity dared mention the number of bottles.”

In 1879 it was recognized that barbers had a place of influence in society but some people viewed it negatively and took it to an exaggerated extend by claiming that barbers were placing people into insane asylum’s because they were talking their ear off and driving them mad with conversation and constant manipulation.Barbers suround

I believe the article reinforces the authentic and special place a barber shop holds in society.  The barbers responsibility is not only to groom the patron but also establish a friendship and a friendship that is not manipulative but honest and sincere (for those that want to have a friendship). It’s been said  “they walk in as patrons and leave as friends” according to Danny Becerra from Gentlemen’s Parlor Barber Shop in San Jacinto, CA.

I hope that 137 years from now someone will read an article that I published about barbers and conclude that the barbering revival occurred worldwide and the great tradition did not die out and was upheld by professionals who stayed true to barbering.

May we all avoid the pitfalls of history.

Your Friend,
Mr. M
Ephesians 3:12

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A Trip Down Memory Lane With American Razor Barber Shop

An eight year old boy and his father get ready to partake in a bi-weekly trip to the local barber american razor window for articleshop. As long as he can remember only one barber shop has cut his hair. This particular barber shop is located in a strip mall. As they approach the barber shop the sight of young and old sitting down patiently waiting for their turns as they watch sports on TV quickly floods the boys field of view. Upon entering the shop the sounds of laughter and muffled discussions fills the air. All the familiar smells and fragrances of musk and bay rum rushes into his nostrils as the father and son have a seat. Copies of Sports Illustrated and hunting magazines fill the shelves and it is the only time the young boy will have a chance to read these magazines. Suddenly his father signals the barber and the waiting begins.

Finally it is the young boys turn, as he gets up and looks around the barber shop he is fascinated by all the sports pennants hanging on the wood paneled walls. The only words that he is instructed to speak to the barber are, “please give me a trim and taper.” For the next 30 minutes the young boy sits on the same chair were young and old alike sit. Once american razor chairs up closethe haircut is complete and he has examined it through the handheld mirror the boy slowly rises from the chair and once again becomes an eight year old but his father has given him one more responsibility because he must pay the barber. Not only will he pay for the cut but he will also give the tip. Before he leaves the cash register the barber produces a bowl full of candy and the man-child quickly obliges and walks away completely content. 

Scenes such as these are played out all around the world and the setting may be different but barbering and life go hand-in-hand whether you’re young or old every man needs grooming. It seems like barbershops today are popping up on every corner and sometimes within a block or two of each other. Social media and superstar status have become the norm but in the college town of Fullerton, California one barbershop has been in business for over 50 years and its soul remains intact.American razor bruno spraying bottle

The shop is located  a few miles from California State University Fullerton and Fullerton College. The city has a large college population and many people are only passing through but the barber shop is a constant. During the last 50 years a few cosmetic changes have taken place but the original barber chairs remain. The wood paneled walls and the back bar got a face lift  but the shop layout and atmosphere is the same and the current owner has alot to do with that. Bruno Sanchez has been barbering since 1983 and took over the shop in 2011. Bruno is an old-fashion type of barber with the gift of gab. He may tell you stories that’ll make you question their validity but will be wholeheartedly entertaining. There is no sense of flare or “prima-donna-esque” tendencies. 

American razor closer view of whole shopAlthough Bruno may not have tens of thousands of followers on social media or possess any barber battle belts or trophies the shop is true to professional barbering. Make no mistake this is an old-fashion barber shop. What I mean by old-fashion is not a time warp or leap to another century because this shop is an original 1960’s men’s barber shop. We are talking pre-Beatles and pre-hippies! I cannot remember the last time I saw a shop in person or social media that had live plants. The colors just really pop and I am not sure if Bruno or anyone else realizes it but that is true 1800’s-early 1900’s barber decor. 

The name of the shop has changed to American Razor Barber Shop and is an institution where men can receive grooming services. A place that is not work or home american razor eaglebut is the magical third place where camaraderie and style are intertwined. 

This is my childhood barbershop where I remained a patron well into my teen years and as an adult I have been back a few times and sat in the same chair. I may be older and have a few more accomplishments under my belt but that barber chair is not concerned whether I am a child,  Mr. M, writer, publisher or a filmmaker because in that chair I am a patron. 

Walking into American Razor barber Shop floods my mind and senses with memories of being a child and the awe in which I viewed barbers. That reverence continues because barbering is sacred and vital in all communities. I am sure if anyone would have american razor bruno laughingmentioned barbering as a “game”, “hustle” or “brand” in this barber shop back in the day they would have been ridiculed and badgered.

I hope that barber shops, wherever they may be, will be encouraged to develop an institution that is built upon tradition and is conducted in a professional way because you never know who that child may grow up to be. Maybe a man who will one day write about you for his website and barber magazine. Never underestimate the influence of this ancient profession known as Barbering. Thank you for taking the trip down memory lane with me. 

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Editing Resumes On 120 Years Of Barbering The Film: Update 2.0


Fred and me

On the set of 120 Years Of Barbering The Film, “Mr. Fred could spit into the wind and it will keep on going.” photo credit: Eric

It’s been a long 1 1/2 months recovering from my back injury and an extremely slow process but I thank God that progress has been made. Still not 100% healthy but your patience and understanding has been a great blessing.

I am glad to resume the final edits on this amazing film. Although my pace may be a bit slower, that is dependent on a day to day. I already edited the film twice and this should be the last and final edit. I anticipate the edits should be done by the end of July and if everything goes well the film will be released in August. Barring any unforeseen changes or setbacks. The first two edits have forged this amazing story of two old time barbers who have a combined 120 years of barbering experience.

My standard for the film has not been lowered and I am still determined to make this the best damn film on barbering history available. You will not view barbering the same!

I must thank everyone involved with the film and especially our sponsor Donnie Hawley for his understanding during this difficult time.

Your Friend,

Mr. M
Psalm 36:5

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Are Cuban Cigars Good Because They Are Forbidden Fruit?


In the early 1960’s American culture was conservative and the hippies and beat-nicks had not made their impact upon the world. The Super Powers (USA and Soviet Union) were engaged in a race to land on the moon and the birth control pill was approved by the FDA. These events were pre-1962 in which the Super Powers had a missile crisis in Cuba H. Upmannthat led to the USA imposing a trade embargo against Cuba.

Before President John F. Kennedy signed the trade embargo he sent his press secretary to buy 1,200 boxes of H. Upmann Petit Coronas, Cuban cigars, before they were made illegal. This act by the President demonstrated the value and importance of Cuban cigars before politics.

Since 1962 Cuban cigars are no longer imported into the USA. Current policy only allows $100 worth of Cuban tobacco products that can be brought into the country which amounts to 2-6 cigars (depending on quality).

For the last 50 plus years Cuban cigars were a forbidden fruit in the USA. Cigar TBJ Cohiba box and tubosaficionados have differing opinions on whether Cuban cigars are the apex of tobacco but make no mistake the climate, tradition, seed and history is firmly planted on that island and incomparable. Cuban cigars hold such a high regard there are plenty of fakes on the market so buyer beware.

A few online companies sell them but do your homework and make sure they are credible and don’t sell fakes. One great website is www.TopCubans.com who supplied the Cohiba Siglos IV for this article. Make sure to visit their website and explore the extensive offerings and deals.

We have many different cigars in our humidor/coolidor and must admit the Cohiba’s are Cohiba and hatunique. It’s not only the iconic logo and black, gold/yellow color scheme that sets them apart but the quality of each cigar is amazing. The triple cap, embossed label and quality of the leaf is everything a cigar should be.

Much like everything else in life everyone’s five senses will not be identical but Cuban cigars should be highly regarded because the history and tradition can produce one of the best smokes of your life.

Cuban cigars are not “good” because they are the forbidden fruit their reputation and quality is what sets the benchmark for all others. Many companies state “Cuban seed” tobacco that is grown somewhere else which is an indicator of the powerful lineage and that is the true greatness of this unique tobacco that is planted on a beautiful island 90 miles away from Florida.

Mr. M
Psalm 34:4

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Update: 120 Years of Barbering the Film & Traditional Barber Journal


First I would like to thank you for all the support and encouragement. I have continually worked hard to write great articles and create innovative publications and films. I do not share my personal life but I believe I owe it to you since many of you are waiting for my work.

I alone created Gentlemen’s Avenue and for the last 4 years created 3 publications; The Avenue Men’s Magazine, Traditional Tattoo Journal, Traditional Barber Journal. I also made a few short films for YouTube and created the series, Real California. Last year with the sponsorship of Donnie Hawley and Layrite I shot my first film 120 Years of Barbering. Not only did Mrs. M and I film it but I have been the sole editor. Which needless to say is a ton of work but extremely enjoyable. Oh, I also manage the website and all social media.

Mrs. M and I had the privilege to photograph many barber shops in Southern California for hospital signa coffee table book series, Revival Of The Traditional Barber Shop.

Along the way Mrs. M has been my support, camera operator, critique and an amazing woman.

A little over a month ago I suffered a back injury (nerve damage) that put me down and I halted all work. Just sitting up was painful much less working on the computer. Mrs. M has helped me write the last few posts and has become my hands.

I am still receiving treatment and finally able to work for 10-15 minutes each day. Somedays are worse than others. I do not have a staff or departments to complete the works in progress so everything relies upon me. For those that have met me are well aware that we are a family operation.

So please allow me more time to complete the projects I started. I anticipate 120 Years of Barbering to be completed by August 2016. The Traditional Barber Journal will be released late September 2016. If there are any setbacks please extend your patience and understanding during this difficult time. I intend to complete everything I started.

Mr. M
Psalm 31:1

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Morgan Pipes: This BlackJack Scores 21!


18tolkienpic-superJumboAs soon as humanity was able to harness fire I am sure smoking tobacco soon followed. This long tradition is flourishing today due to amazing craftsmen that are forging traditional tobacco pipes with high grade materials.

History reflects a variety of men that enjoyed a tobacco pipe as a luxury and relaxation. And for many it became an iconic symbol of sophistication. J.R.R. Tolkien (left) the author of the Lord of Stalin pipethe Rings famously enjoyed the pipe. This leisurely activity was not only reserved for the literary minds but also dictators such as Joseph Stalin (right) partook of the pipe.

The pipe is a DIY for tobacco connoisseur’s because you are able to blend various types of tobacco to produce a unique and enjoyable blend. Maybe you prefer a sweeter cherry flavor with a dash of vanilla or you may prefer a strong whiskey blend. Either way you can customize and experiment to your taste.

Recently we received a great pipe from Chris Morgan owner of Morgan Pipes and let me tell you I am impressed. He sent the BlackJack series Shape 20 that is made of briar wood “which is a tumor-like outgrowth that develops between root and stem of white heath (Erica arborea)” https://pipedia.org/docs/CharacteristicsOfBriar.pdf. This special wood is heat resistant and ideal for pipe making.  The pipe has a nickel silver band and acrylic stem. The construction is solid and well made.

Morgan pipe side viewThe pipe is handmade in Italy to Mr. Morgans demanding specifications with a sandblasted carnauba wax finish that provides just the right amount of matte. Although the pipe is black there is a great contrast with the nickel band and shiny acrylic stem. There is an imprinted Morgan Pipes rabbit on the pipe and model name. Every nook and groove of the pipe declares that it is handmade and produces tons of character. The pipe smokes wonderfully and every draw is smooth and enjoyable.

A major upside to smoking a pipe, besides producing your own blends and looking hell a Morgan pipe top viewcool, is that depending on the depth of the bowl and how much you pack it with you can enjoy on average 30-45 min smoke and up to 1.5 hours.

We highly recommend Morgan Pipes BlackJack Shape 20. All great products begin and end with the owner/craftsmen.  Have no doubt that every detail of the pipe is a reflection of Mr. Morgan’s passion.

In addition to the handmade pipes from Italy there are highly sought after custom one-off pipes that Mr. Morgan produces in the USA on a commission basis. Another great product is the briar cigar that is really impressive. We hope to review more products from Morgan Pipes so stay tuned!  On a personal note I really admire Mr. Morgan because in a day and age where people can become fake or a personality he is genuine and real.

Mr. M
Psalm 30:2-3

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Stop! Drop! Roll! Logan Bros. Pomade Is Here


In elementary school I was taught to “Stop! Drop! Roll!” in the event that I was on fire. Those easy commands were designed to put the fire out and in the case of Logan Bros. Pomade you may need to stop, drop and roll because they are on fire with their newly launched pomade.

Nowadays pomades are hitting the market almost every week. There is very little that separates each product because most use the white plastic double-wall jars with a colorful cliche filled label. The Logan Bros. own and operate a barber shop in Orange County, CA and have really thought outside the box with their new water-based pomade.Logan Bros Pomade on sink jar alone

First things first, this is a nickel plated steel jar! I am still blown away by the shine and classic styling. Not only does the jar contain great pomade but you can also reuse it or put it on the shelf. Either way it is durable metal that will age with grace. Sure they could have taken the easy way and used the plastic white container with a sticker on it but they went the extra mile and did something I have not seen before in the industry. The label has an old paper appearance with excellent fonts that compliment the classic jar.

Another forward thinking idea is the 3 oz size. It’s not less is more because the size of the jar is FAA carry on approved. That’s right you don’t need to scoop out your beloved 4+ oz pomade and put into a smaller container to take it on a plane because Logan Bros. has that covered.

The pomade is a translucent white, as opposed to solid white, with a citrus clean scent that is pleasant and not offensive. The real greatness of this pomade is that is designed for Logan Bros Pomade on sinkyour “hair health” by using Bladderwack extract that increases blood flow to the hair follicles, Chamomile extract, Grapefruit extract & Carrot extract that promote hair and scalp health. The hold is medium-heavy and can be re-combed. Don’t expect a helmet head with this pomade if you don’t want your hair to ever move use Aquanet!

All in all, I am extremely impressed with the Logan Bros. Pomade it’s a homerun! Everything from the nickel plated container, vintage inspired label and a pomade that is looking to the future. Make sure to pickup a can or dozen for your shop.

Mr. M
Psalm 22:26

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A Cigar Fit For An Admiral

The following review was done by our good friend Elias Kotsios. 

Historical Note: “On the 28th of October of 1492, sixteen days after the discovery of the Indies, Christoph Kolumbus landed in the Cuban bay of Bariay. His biggest surprise was to find indigenous people smoking dried leaves which formed a blue and aromatic smoke. He later discovered that these cigars where used to cure skin illness, alleviate suffering and to celebrate its ritual ceremonies.” From Kolumbus website in which he is referred to as the Admiral. 

Kolumbus Premium Cigars are located in La Palma, Spain. All of their cigars are TBJ II Kolumbus cigars focused lid nothandmade and seasoned in Spanish cedar cellars.  I was anxious to try these cigars, the pictures and description piqued my interest.  The cigar I decided to go with first was the K-Azul Piramide, the cigar had a very nice appearance and had an appealing Connecticut wrapper. During the dry draw there was a vanilla taste that existed and peppery notes were present as well.

Once lit it had a nice smooth draw not too tight and the taste was pretty straight forward, the vanilla was no longer present and my pallet was filled with more pepper and nutty notes. The cigar had a consistent burn with no tunneling and the construction held up well, when a cigar begins to unravel it is irritating for every cigar smoker (I’m sure I’m not alone).  Towards the mid point of the cigar is when I began to notice a difference in the flavor, at that point the vanilla began to slowly come in but it wasn’t overwhelming. I was really enjoying this cigar and it began to become more complex towards the shoulder of the cigar, at that point I was reaching about 40 minutes of smoking.  The end of the cigar Elias screen shot kolumbusdid not change much continued with the well balanced taste that existed from the initial light up, total smoking time was about 55 minutes.

Overall this was a great cigar, I will definitely add Kolumbus cigars to my humidor. It was a smooth consistent smoke the whole way through with a great draw that didn’t tighten up at all. This was their mild strength option, there is also the K-Rojo (mild/full) and the K-Negro (moderate). Stack some of these sticks in your humidor they will not disappoint.  I’m patiently waiting to see what the gents over at Kolumbus cigars have coming up in the future, if these cigars are an indication of what we have in store, the cigar community will be very pleased.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 -SPECS-                                                                                                                                  -Length 156mm                                                                                                                    -Diameter 20.64mm                                                                                                             -Ring Gauge 52

filler from Breña and Claro Connecticut wrapper.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             -Elias Kotsios-

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