- November 15, 2021
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- Posted by: admin
WAUSAU (WAOW)– Wausau barber, Jose Arlequin, picked up his first pair of clippers at age 14. He has not stopped since.
His goal is to bring unique styles and ‘old school’ techniques to Wausau under the name A+ Stylez, a name given to him by a close friend and customer.
Arlequin grew up on the Menominee Reservation in Northern Wisconsin.
A boarding school’s dorm hall bathroom in South Dakota, would be his first shop. Cutting his classmates hair on the barter system. He started with everyday cuts and wacky bet-loosing cuts that grew his style and skill. His school even designated a space for him to cut hair when business started to boom. It was out of necessity. No shop in the area could cut his hair in the style he liked so he cut his own. Word spread about his unique style and the start of A+ Styles was born.
After he graduated high school, he adjusted a few career changes without the clippers for awhile, cutting hair for family in friends on the side. He pursued his creativity as a commercial painter. Then, worked diligently as a construction worker with precisive technique. That is when he was electrocuted in the job and his mom encouraged him to get back into barbering full-time. Unsure of how he would get his business up and running, he worked as a barber for a shop back on the reservation. When that did not turn successful, he started to save money as a blackjack dealer. A random night in a casino changed his life forever. He hit the jackpot, moved to Florida, and opened A+ barbers with a friend. There, he was able to cut different styles on different textures and diversified his portfolio.
He developed a successful business, but wanted to continue his education in cosmetology. He moved back north to Wausau, WI. He further diversified his craft branching into women’s styles and color.
“I am pretty good at cutting women’s hair too,” he said, and plans to incorporate those services as he grows in the area.
A+ Stylez currently rents a chair at Shades of Summer Tanning Salon. He is normally booked in advance from open to close.
To him, customers in his chair want the old school experience.
“The conversations. The overall feel of it. What it brings to the community,” he said the finesse makes him unique. He said, that, and his practice in precision straight razor lineups, “Nowhere else will you get a straight razor with your service. I try to offer services that others don’t, which makes me a unique pinnacle in the city of Wausau.”
So what’s kept him going all these years?
“[If] I’m in a super bad mood. I can come to work and forget about it all… become the “barber persona”. It’s not more or less leaving to become someone else, it’s about coming [back in] to myself.”
If you want a freehand, custom cut, give him a call.
Jose’ Arlequin: 715-679-6580
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