There was a time in American history during which the idea of a men’s barber shop – or a ladies’ beauty shop – would have been considered entirely appropriate. One throwback to that era, however, recently learned that his brand of service is now illegal.
Pittsburgh area barber John Interval, who owns Barbiere, recently received a $750 fine from his local government because the business does not accept female clients. The controversy began when he suggested a potential patron might be more comfortable in one of several nearby shops equipped to meet her needs.
Interval explained that he is “not opposed to doing women’s hair,” explaining that he simply does not have the materials needed to do so at his shop.
Barbiere’s environment, which includes details like free beer and the option of a straight razor shave, obviously appeals to Interval’s clientele. He said he looks forward to opening another business, through which women can enjoy similar amenities:
I want to open a shop to cater to them and no men will be allowed there. They’ll have all the champagne and mimosas they want – and that’ll be on the house.