When Esin Lau moved to Georgetown seven years ago, she said she struggled to find an old-fashioned barbershop that would hire her, so she decided to open one of her own.
“The ones I wanted to work [in], they didn’t want to have girls in their shop,” Lau said. “So I thought, ‘Well if I have a shop I’ll get a lot of girls because there are girl barbers that have a difficult time finding a place to work.’”
Lau, born in Turkey and raised in Germany, moved to Georgetown after her husband retired from the U.S. military.
She opened Georgetown Barbershop in 2013 near Monument Cafe downtown. After starting out with just one mirror and one barber chair, Lau’s business grew to the point where she brought on additional barbers. Today, after moving in April 2017, Georgetown Barbershop is located on East University Avenue with four other female barbers and one male barber renting chairs in Lau’s shop.
Lau said she runs her shop like she and the other barbers are one big family. Barbers and clients can talk about anything from sports to politics or religion, she said. Lau added that it is through having a friendly environment that she has maintained clients since she first opened.
The business also allows Lau to meet different people, which she says is her favorite part of owning the shop.
“I get to meet lots of people from construction workers to doctors [and]lawyers, but when they sit in the chair, they’re just a person,” Lau said. “You come in, have a good time [and]get a haircut.”
Georgetown Barbershop provides cuts, shaves and beard trims, among other services. Prices range from $7 for waxing to $23 for a haircut and clipper beard trim. Lau said her favorite cut to do is the pompadour haircut because it reminds her of Elvis Presley.
The shop also has a mascot: an 11 month-old Cavachon dog named Sarge who is owned by barber Melissa Freeman.
“[Girls] cut as good, even maybe better, than guys,” Lau said. “We just want to come here, work, please people.”
604 E. University Ave., Georgetown
Hours: Tue.-Fri. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-3 p.m., closed Sun.-Mon.