Welcome back to dapperQ’s ongoing queer barber and hairstylist interview series: Queer Cuts. This week we’re celebrating Rhia Moulds, an Australia-based hairstylist and barber who can currently be found at Little Rebel Collective.
dapperQ: Please tell us a bit about yourself and your salon.
Rhia: I’m a British/Australian hairstylist and barber, based in Melbourne, Australia. I grew up in Nottingham, England. I left school after GCSE’s to study art and on the weekends I worked in a city hair salon washing hair & sweeping floors for extra cash. After art studies, I decided to take up an apprenticeship with the salon I was working in. I took the opportunity to move to Australia at age 18 with my patents and continued my hairstylist training in Melbourne. I trained and worked in a high end hair salon located in hip Fitzroy for four years. I was passionate about short hair and wanted to extend my skills and learn new techniques of cutting, so I made the move to train and work in barber shops. I did this for a further 18 months before making the decision to work for myself and open a shop. Little Rebel Collective opened in late February 2015. It’s a large unisex creative space consisting of myself (I specialise in gender neutral hair and barbering); Kylie who specialises in creative hair colour; and Chelsea who specialises in nail art and beauty. We also display local artists work in our gallery.
or on Instagram at: @littlerebelcollective or @rhiahairandbarber
dapperQ: Queer fashion sites like dapperQ and Qwear are often asked, “What is queer style?” Does it exist? And, if so, what sets queer style apart from other aesthetics? Along the same lines, many of our readers ask us about queer hair styles (e.g. is there such a thing and where are the best places to get one). Do you believe that “queer hair styles” are a discernible aesthetic? If so, what makes them unique?
Rhia: Queer hair styles don’t necessarily have a discernible aesthetic, but the individual whose hair I’m cutting does. So, the style I cut is dependent on how that individual wants to look, i.e more feminine or more masculine, more alternative/punk, or more corporate.
dapperQ: What are some trends you are seeing in queer and/or masculine cuts?
Rhia: Some trends I see in queer masculine cuts are low skin fades with heavy textured tops, slicked sharp hard parts and also pompadours.
dapperQ: How do you understand and approach your clientele different from the ways a classic barbershop/salon does?
Rhia: After working in high end expensive salons, and cheaper male dominated barber shops, I experienced the unfair price difference of haircuts depending on gender. I wanted to close the gap and offer high quality, gender neutral barbering services for a fair price. I charge my clients based on the haircut I give them – not on gender. I also wanted to create a space for people of all genders to feel welcome and comfortable; and I definitely feel that we have achieved this at Little Rebel Collective.