Founder/Owner, KleanKlut Grooming Lounge
Eric “KleanKut” Dixon became a barber after a tragic situation that left his scalp deformed and caused him to experience overwhelming anxiety. Since that incident, Eric’s scalp has healed and he has conquered those feelings of anxiety. He started his own business and is now using his platform to serve the community. Eric is a passionate advocate dedicated to ending the stigma surrounding mental health, particularly within the African American community. He often speaks at various community events, and is available to discuss anything from community outreach to mental health, particularly mental health amongst Black men.
Barbershops are known for being one of the many safe spaces men have created to feel comfortable communicating, which makes Eric an incredible resource. As the owner of KleanKut Grooming Lounge, he uses his business to not only create great cuts but to also be a listening ear to his many loyal clients. Eric believes that barbershops are places men can go to be free, relieve their stress, unwind, and obtain knowledge from others. Eric hopes that his transparency about his personal experiences and the information he provides to his clients will help them feel comfortable seeking the help they may need.
Tell us about your educational and/or professional training, and current area of expertise related to mental health and wellness? I am a barber and mental health advocate. I am currently in training to be certified in Mental Health First Aid.
What are some ways that you promote mental health and wellness through your area of expertise (yoga instructor, clergy, mental health professional, etc.)? Barbershops have always been a safe haven for male minorities, and I use my profession to open the conversation in a non-invasive way.
What are your recommendations for ending stigma in the Black community? By opening the conversation, we can begin to normalize it. I find that by sharing my experience with therapy and living my truth about dealing with anxiety, more people are willing to open up to me.
How do you make time for your own wellness and self-care? I always decompress by reading and painting. I’ve been a visual artist all my life.
Eric Dixon is a master barber and mental health advocate, based in Maryland. When not traveling or competing nationally, Eric is producing unique styles and guaranteeing customer satisfaction for every one he services in his private boutique location. You can learn more about Eric at his website www.kleankutthebarber.com.
Check out this link to his recent Forbes feature: https://www.forbes.com/sites/janicegassam/2020/02/23/how-this-barber-uses-his-shop-to-improve-black-mens-mental-health/#5d8befbe31e4
Here is a link to his recent interview on the ABC show Let's Talk Live: