Rudy’s Barbershop

Best Bargain Hairstylist, July 2008
Twice a year, Lissa Renn attends workshops at New York’s Bumble and Bumble University to learn the latest hairstyling trends and techniques. She disseminates the information to stylists at the five L.A. locations of Rudy’s Barbershop and has styled models for fashion shows by L.A. designers Jeremy Scott and Pegah Anvarian. She cuts hair at the Melrose Avenue Rudy’s—for $24 to $30 a pop.

What’s the difference between a $400 haircut and a $30 one?
A $400 job is more about a hairstylist who wants a name for themselves or a client who wants to tell friends, “Oh, I paid $400 for my hair.” As a stylist you sense an obligation to give them a show for that kind of money, like you need to entertain the person with two hours of conversation. I could be getting paid $150 a haircut right now, but I like feeling that I don’t owe anything to anyone.

How do you execute more than just the basic cut?
There’s so much you can do, like detailing around the hairline, doing different types of bangs or sideburns, creating more volume in certain areas, or slide-cutting, which is opening up the scissors and just carving into the hair, which creates new pathways for movement. I’m also obsessed with using a nice clean razor. It creates softness that allows hair to be really mobile. I use razors on women all the time.
How else do you keep up with the latest styles?
I like going through magazines, especially Flaunt and W, and not just for the hairstyles. Fashion editorial influences how hair should be styled, too.
Where are hair trends going?
I’m trying to get clients away from the shaggy look. It’s a little dated, even though people still want it to get that sort of messy look. I like doing cuts that are a bit more severe but classic at the same time. For women, right now I like long, straight, almost doll-like hair with a nice bang and blunt cut.