Nothing is off limits, there's no exceptions to what we as women can do. We simply do what we do and do it well. I met this weeks feature in High School and as life would have it her passion and mine brought us back together. Tareva has always stood out and I wasn't surprised when she started posting pictures and talking about being a barber, she has added on to her stand out factor. So, what's the driving force to be a woman in a male dominating profession? Lets find out!
RM: Tell me about yourself?
RM: Tell me about yourself?
TM: My name Is Tareva McCray and I am a 28 year old mother to my beautiful two year old baby girl Lyric. Currently, I manage and work as a barber at V.I.P. Barbershop in Tampa, Fl.
RM: How did you get into the barber world?
TM: I have always thought that female barbers were special. My father had a female barber and my volleyball coach in High School was also a barber. In 2013, I was forced to leave corporate America right after buying my first home and having my daughter and I vowed that I would never let that happen to me again. I took a leap of faith and enrolled in barber school and the rest is history.
RM: What is it like being a woman in a male dominated industry?
TM: I LOVE IT! Initially men are kind of skeptical because this IS a male dominated industry. It only takes ONE TIME to cut their hair and they are HOOKED. Being a female in this industry is quite the task because we already have to work double, we have a point to prove and that is also why the barbering experience with a female will be like none other. We pay very close attention to detail and we also know what we would like to see on a man.
(A couple of Tareva's clients)
RM: There have been talks about hair stylists, nail technicians being considered "artists" would you say that being a barber is a form of art?
TM: ABSOLUTLEY! A lot of people don’t realize the skill and talent it takes to actually be a barber. When men come in to the shop they point at a picture and expect for it to come out exactly like that or better. It takes a certain eye to be able to help create a certain blend when the hair type and head shape may be totally different. Sometimes men will come in with simply a description and trust that your creativity will bring it to life. All cuts must be flattering to their head and lines CRISP! Designs are a whole different beast!
RM: What has been your greatest lesson so far?
TM: Patience and confidence. You must first be very patient in the start of your career, I see a lot of new barbers that come in to this industry ready to make a LOAD of money and that is possible, VERY possible but you have to put in the work. There were days that I would come in to the shop and just watch other barbers cut all day and make nothing. Now, none of that is an issue, my cliental is growing everyday and I have men that ONLY let me cut their hair. I was confident enough to do my best on EVERY single client even if it was a cut that I’d never done.
RM: Where do you see yourself & your craft in five years?
TM: I really have a strong passion for new barbers. That fresh start is VERY critical to a barbers career it can make or break you. I would LOVE to be an instructor at our local barber school and have my own shop.
RM: What advice would you give our readers especially women who may be intimidated by being in a male dominated profession?
TM: Be very confident and consistent. As a woman in this field we already have that against us. You must be confident when dealing with new clients and continue to cut their hair to perfection. If you get turned down do not be discouraged, I used to have men come in and choose the inexperienced barber over me simply because I a woman. I did not let it discourage me I just made sure that I took excellent care of each and every one of my clients, every time. Also, be on time and follow your business hours at all times. This is a major walk-in business, unlike beauty salons men don’t book appointments a week in advance, they usually wake up and say hey I need a cut and if they come in to the shop and you are not there that has a huge impact because then you are no longer dependable.
RM: Is there anything you'd like to tell the readers, something they should know about you?
TM: I do not do this for the money. I love male grooming, the smile on their faces when I turn them around to the mirror is priceless. The money will come when you do what you love and you will NEVER work a day in your life.
RM: Where can our readers find you for a fly cut?
TM: V.I.P. Barber Shop 6245 S. Dale Mabry Hwy Tampa, FL 33605 813-453-9212
I think of the barriers and stereotypes that Tareva is breaking down, moving past and coming out on top. Being confident, consistent and doing what you love out of passion and not the money is what I believe is a supreme high power. Continue to be a BEAST Tareva, and if you're ever in the Tampa Bay area stop by and let her change your entire world with a hair cut!