Wahl and the clipper revolution

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Laura VanderMoere, Global Director of Education, Professional, Wahl Clipper Corporation, walks us through the brand’s journey. 

Since 1919, with the invention of the first practical electric hair clipper, Wahl has been a grooming products leader for 99 years.

With the invention of the electric hair clipper, Wahl Professional had predicted the grooming scene of the whole world long time back. In today’s date, more and more salons and saloons are ditching the shears and grabbing clippers and trimmers to transform their clients’ look. The world-class brand’s global director of education, Laura VanderMoere, speaks about the challenges encountered, its most recent innovations and its plans head.

How has the grooming industry evolved over time?
Trends tend to recycle themselves every two decades, with each generation adding their twist, nudging the norm. In the past 10 years, the industry has witnessed an explosion in the men’s grooming industry, with connected and disconnected versions of the 40’s and 50’s tapers, fades and pompadours. It is now acceptable for men to use and irons to get perms and styling products for a more manageable mane. Clipper cutting is now a universal technique, embraced by men and women in equal measure.

How has the brand’s journey been in the Indian grooming industry? What were the challenges faced by the brand?

After the hairstyles for men gained popularity, the clipper became a necessity. However, using clippers is still a daunting task for those who use shears and haven’t been trained on precision cutting.  The biggest challenge was to pull the professionals out of their comfort zone and introduce them to clippers, which would later replace shears. When professionals acquire knowledge about what each tool is designed to do and the various haircutting techniques, they feel extremely liberated. That in turn takes their career curve a notch higher.

What are the brand’s most recent innovations?

  • For precision cutting, the 5-Star Series has the precision and power for your multi-cultural clients. Exclusive to the series is the blade slide mechanism designed to adjust the blades to a flush or zero gap. While this is only recommended for those who are comfortable with on-scalp cutting, when used properly, the blades and motors provide the cleanest, closest results as compared to any other tool in the market.
  • For styling, Wahl has created an All-In-One blade designed for slicing, feathering, and texturising. This is ideal for longer hair and for blending pompadours or top length into the sides/back.
  • Wahl Professional’s cordless technology is second to none. The lightweight and powerful clipper allows the user the physical flexibility to rotate the clipper to create angles.

How does the brand cope with the competition in the grooming industry?

Competition is healthy, it makes brands better themselves and it’s only natural for other brands to have a presence in the industry.  However, we try to be the one who creates the competition instead of coping with it. History will show that Wahl has pioneered the path for both product innovation and multifaceted education; and continues to do so. While we understand that not everyone is in alignment with our approach, we have managed to maintain the position of the leading manufacturer of clippers worldwide for almost a century.

Why do you think a hairstylist should pick a Wahl innovation over any other product in the market?

Wahl is a reliable resource for professionals to grow their business.  We not only sell tools, but also teach how to use and maintain them for longevity.  I have clippers I’ve been using for 10+ years and they are still going strong (must keep them properly cleaned and maintained though), so the brand redefines value and quality.

What is the USP of the brand?

Quality, innovation, after sales services and education. We are currently engaged in educating hairdressers to understand the fundamentals and basic techniques of clippers and trimmers to increase their knowledge and sharpen their skills.

How does Wahl try to make a different to the industry?

Our products are versatile and compatible. Working with trimmers and clippers reduces the time required for a cut, thus paving way for better time management and higher returns.

Tell us about your plans ahead.

Our future is our professionals. We want to share with them everything we can – from clippers and cutting techniques to business tactics, so they can make more money by putting them to good use.

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