From Cutting Hair in His Mom’s Garage to Reaching 11 Million People on TikTok, Meet the Barber Who Went Viral for Giving Haircuts to Strangers
But TikTok is also a great platform to find inspiration and learn about what’s going on in our communities. And one source of inspiration is the story of viral barber, Vic Blends.
Vic Blends is the stage name for 22-year-old Victor Fontanez. He started cutting hair in his mom’s garage in Fayetteville, North Carolina as a side hustle while getting through high school. After going to barber school, he ended up moving to Atlanta and gained notoriety for being a barber in the city’s booming rap scene, shaping the hair styles of celebrities like NLE Choppa, Mozzy, Lil Baby, Nelly, and NBA players like Trae Young.
But when the pandemic hit, he wasn’t able to work as a barber, so like a lot of us he had to reinvent himself to get by and pivoted to creating videos on TikTok.
Blends explained his process on the Nick Cannon show in November, stating: “I’m a barber and I thought that was all I had to offer to the world, that’s what everybody knew me for. I was cutting celebrities and it was something cool to look at. But the one thing I was good at got [taken] from me”
“So now I’m sitting at the crib wondering who is Victor Fontanez if he can never cut hair again? Then I realized god blessed my voice long before he blessed my hands. You gotta reinvent yourself,” he shared. Since then he’s blessed audiences with his wisdom via TikTok, sharing videos of him cutting hair and talking about life to his 11 million followers.
Most people tune in to watch his motivational videos, where he asks people on the street if he can cut their hair, then talks to them about their story. But Vic Blends also uses his TikTok and other social media platforms to share his opinions on bad haircuts, issues affecting the community, and even financial advice.
In one video, Vic stops a teenager on Venice Beach, California and after a bit of hesitation convinces him to get his first haircut in a year. The two talk about the effects of the pandemic, and the decision to not pursue higher education.
Vic tells the teenager that he went through a similar situation where his parents were scared about him going to barber school instead of college but in the end came around to supporting him, saying, “if you want your family to be behind your dream you gotta prove it to them with your acting.”
It’s deep conversations like this that made Vic Blends grow popular on TikTok. They’re stories we can relate to and find inspiration in. Vic shows that one person can make a difference one haircut and conversation at a time.
Despite the fame he’s gained as a barber and influencer, Vic hasn’t forgotten about the community he came from. In December he returned to his hometown Fayetteville to organize an event that gave out free haircuts, toys, food, and clothes to children in the community.
“To me, what’s a blessing if you can’t share with other people?” Vic told the Fayetteville Observer. “God placed me in a very, very special position last year in my life and I know it ain’t for selfish reasons. I don’t think blessings come to hold to yourself. It’s there to share with others.”
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