A HAIRDRESSER is celebrating after being shortlisted for a contest to crown Britain’s best shaver — reporter Liam Thorp went to find out what a cut-throat business it can be.

IT was a happy coincidence when I was sent to report on salon owner Jignesh Madhavji, also known as “Jiggi”, and his bid to be named Britain’s best shaver — because it had been well noted in the office that my facial fuzz had become unruly and needed a chop.

Jiggi Hair Salon has been based within the Whites Hotel at the Reebok Stadium for two years.

During that time, Jiggi, aged 28, has built up a reputation as a talented hairdresser, winning the National Hairdressers’ Federation barbering competition in 2010 and becoming the chosen stylist for a number of Wanderers stars.

His next target is to be named Britain’s best wet shaving barber.

Jiggi, of Derby Street, Daubhill, has been shortlisted for the North West regional final of Britain’s Best Shave, which has been organised by the British Barbers’ Association and grooming brand Bluebeards Revenge and will take place in Manchester on Sunday, March 30.

If he wins he will progress to the national final and will be one step closer to being named Britain’s best shaver.

Jiggi said: “I am really pleased to be competing — barbering is my passion and I love being creative and innovative as it allows me to provide a very personal service to the individual.

“I have developed a very loyal customer base and now have clients travelling miles for my face massages and cut-throat shaves.

“It would be brilliant to win the award, for me personally and for the business — I think it would make me quite unique in Bolton.”

A close shave

I had never experienced a professional cut-throat shave before, but Jiggi made me feel comfortable by talking me through the process carefully.

This made it slightly less scary when, after applying hot towels and then using shaving oil and foam to create a thick lather, he produced a very sharp blade and headed straight for my exposed neck.

But he was the consummate professional and used the blade to firstly shave along with the growth of my hairline before reapplying the lather and going against the grain for a very smooth finish.

In no time at all I had returned to the fresh-faced look of my teenage years and was beginning to wonder if I would need to some form of identification with me on my next trip to the pub.

Jiggi’s top shaving tips

  • Shave directly after a hot shower, which softens skin and opens pores.
  • Use shaving oil first and massage it into the skin.
  • Next, apply shaving foam and work into a thick lather.
  • Use razor to shave down from the sideburns, going with the growth direction of the hair.
  • Now reapply the shaving foam, forming a thinner lather and shave against the grain.
  • Finish by splashing with cold water to close the pores and apply aftershave cream or balm.