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Salon-quality products available in unlikely places at unlikely prices

December 19, 2013

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Jon Amyx cuts the hair of customer Randy Wright at the Downtown Barber Shop while three young women look over hair products displayed in the window.

Jon Amyx cuts the hair of customer Randy Wright at the Downtown Barber Shop while three young women look over hair products displayed in the window.

Most moms wouldn’t think to buy Christmas gifts for their daughters at a barber shop, but that’s not the case for moms like LeAnn Towner.

Towner is a regular at the Downtown Barber Shop, 824 Massachusetts St. She doesn’t get her hair cut there, but she does purchase hair care products for her and her daughters at the barber shop.

Towner said she’s been a regular customer at the Downtown Barber Shop for more than 10 years. The barber shop sells about 20 salon brand hair product lines at prices that are sometimes more than 50 percent cheaper than at salons and larger beauty supply stores.

“I like Redken,” Towner said.

For $25 Towner can purchase a liter of Redken shampoo and conditioner at the Downtown Barber Shop. She would pay more than double that at salons and beauty supply stores. A liter of Redken shampoo retails for $23.98 at Beauty Brands without the conditioner.

Downtown Barber Shop owner Jon Amyx said when it comes to hair products he wants to supply quality and consistency with his customers.

“There are a lot of places that run sales a lot,” Amyx said.

But the Downtown Barber Shop doesn’t rely on sales to lure in customers; instead, Amyx said, it offers competitive prices year round.

Customers can get liters of Pureology shampoo and conditioner for $35 each and $15 for an 8.5-ounce bottle. The same products retail for as much as $58.98 for a liter and $26.98 for an 8.5-ounce bottle at other salons.

When customers run out of shampoo or styling products, they know how much it will cost to replenish their supplies at the Downtown Barber Shop. Amyx’s customers don’t have to stock up on products during big sales. They can buy what they want, when they want.

“The prices are fabulous,” said Kim Hylton, who has been a Downtown Barbershop customer for more than 20 years.

But it’s not just the prices that bring customers like Hylton and Towner back to the Downtown Barber Shop.

“It’s not; it’s about Jon. He’s just so friendly,” Hylton said. “I tell everybody about him. I tell him sometimes he should give me commission for bringing all his new customers,” Hylton said.

Hylton’s co-worker Ashley Moran became at Downtown Barber Shop customer 10 years ago, and she said she’d never go back to big-box beauty stores.

Moran said she buys Redken shampoo and TIGI smoothing cream from the barber shop. The TIGI syling products run $10 each at the Downtown Barber Shop, but can retail for up to $20 each at beauty stores.

The Downtown Barber Shop also carries Deva Curl, Kenra, Chi and Matrix products.

Amyx said he purchases products based on what his customers want. If a customer wants a product he doesn’t currently have, he’ll purchase the product for the customer and see how well it sells.

The Downtown Barber Shop began selling three lines of hair products 26 years ago, and this part of the business has continued to grow over the years.

“We are probably on the second generation of KU students who are buying products from us,” Amyx said.

Amyx doesn’t like to tout his low prices, he said. Instead, he said, he focuses on customer service both in the haircut and retail portions of his business.

“It all works hand in hand,” Amyx said.

Shoppers can also get salon quality products at Rex’s Stadium Barbershop, 1033 Massachusetts, and at Amyx Barber Shop, 842 Massachusetts.

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