My favourite thing about Ruffians is the aroma of cedarwood, barbicide and coffee that, as you step in from the Edinburgh wind, wraps you up in a bear-hug.
Ruffians is unmistakably old-school, a barber’s shop my grandfather would probably approve of. It’s sleek and trimmed though, with even a few iPads to keep you busy while you wait. The background music gives the place a laid-back bluesy, rocky vibe: a blessed relief from most hairdressers’ blaring pop.
A barber with a no-doubt immaculate beard will sit you down, and ask what kind of haircut you’d like. If, as in my case, you tend to say ‘kind of the same, but a bit shorter’, they’ll nod understandingly. And proceed to give you the haircut you never quite knew how to ask for, sending you back to the world immaculately washed, trimmed and shaved.
The staff seem to have been chosen for experience and skill: they all cut quickly and confidently, but if you can, ask for Stewart, he’s the man. I’ve had a few great conversations, but you can have your haircut in peace and quiet while sipping your coffee, if that’s more to your taste. Sadly their prices have recently gone up, but Ruffians is worth it if you need cleaning up for a special occasion, or are simply fed up with bad haircuts.