Barbershop Cuts Both Hair And Blood Pressure

For any salon-goer, a parlor doesn’t scream anything beyond style and fashion. Occasionally, an outstanding citizen will go out of his way to tailor the homeless. Still, barbershops are mostly all about the weave — unless you run A New You in L.A. The one-of-a-kind boutique treats its African American customers for high blood pressure, among other trendy services.

“There’s open communication in a barbershop. There’s a relationship, a trust,” said Eric Muhammad, owner of A New You Barbershop, one of the barbers who participated. “We have a lot more influence than just the doctor walking in the door.”

Biologically, black men see higher blood pressure rates, reading spikes up to 130. Prone to strokes and heart attacks, they are often in need of more significant medical attention than others. In cooperation with churches and community groups, A New You is bringing pharmacists into the hair world.

“This is a home run … high-touch medicine,” said one independent expert, Eileen Handberg, a heart researcher at the University of Florida in Gainesville. “Most drug trials only dream about such good results, yet they were achieved in a regular community setting,” she said.

Props, Mr. Muhammad! Never hurts to be cautious around razors.

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Stranger Donates Shop To Barber Who Gives Free Haircuts

In this day and age, it isn’t only lawyers who are offering their services pro bono. Dr. Kenny Wilstead fixed a battered woman’s tooth for free, to ease her recovery from domestic abuse. NFL defender Chris Long is playing this year’s entire season free-of-charge, directing his checks towards education groups. Casual barber Brennon Jones, who gives free haircuts to the homeless, is now working out of a shop donated by a stranger — at no cost, of course.

“Me, personally, I think I surpassed a thousand haircuts, so many I stopped counting. So it’s been a good year so far,” Brennon explained.

Sean Johnson, a self-made barber himself (he owns Taper’s Barbershop!), is Jones’ generous benefactor. Johnson decided to focus on the donation in place of an expansion project.

“It wasn’t about me giving a barbershop, when you look at the homeless and the things that they need, I looked at it as more. I built something and I want to see it keep going and I want to see it do a great thing,” Johnson said.

Set to open in November, the shop will cater to both regular and homeless customers. To many who call sidewalks and park benches home, the occasional haircut provides a much-needed boost of confidence.

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