Kevin Vargas – Barber
Kevin Vargas remembers getting his haircut regularly as a kid – seems like it was every week. But instead of being a chore, Kevin looked forward to it.
“After you get a haircut you feel good,” he says. “You feel confident and ready to tackle whatever you need to get done that day.”
So, it’s no surprise the 28-year-old Lynwood native decided to come back to Lynwood, after years of being away, and open up his own shop. He chose to return to Lynwood because it’s not only home, it’s a city with potential.
“I like the community,” he says. “And I really like what the city does for the community. It’s very on top of things.”
He opened up Flawless Barber Shop on Atlantic Blvd. four years ago and then last year, he opened up a second location just down the street. Business was going great – and then COVID struck.
Vargas lost one shop and came close to losing the second. The strain of paying rent on two shops and his home, plus all the other bills, was putting a serious strain on Vargas and his young family.
“It affects you mentally. You don’t know what’s going to happen or how long it will go.”
So when the restrictions were recently lifted, Vargas eagerly but cautiously re-opened and started welcoming back his barbers and his old customers.
“It’s exciting to be open again,” he told us. “I’m happy to see my fellow barbers and really happy to see my customers and catch up and take care of them again. But it’s also overwhelming getting used to the new program.”
The “new program” means everyone – customers and barbers – must all wear masks. It’s uncomfortable for everyone and slows things down considerably. Vargas says supplies are also more expensive – when he can get them. There are now shortages of disinfectants and other critical supplies.
But he’s back in business and ready to work at rebuilding. He’s also optimistic about Lynwood’s future.
“I hope that this never happens again. I have hope that we will be back to normal. Maybe I can get another shop again?”