Barbers of The Lowcounty – Shave and a Haircut in a True Barbershop

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with long time local barber Brent Nelson of Barbers of the Lowcountry to learn a little about his family and business…

Tell us about your business

My father Lou and I moved to Hilton Head from New Orleans, LA. and started Barbers of the Lowcountry in the fall of 1997 on Hilton Head Island about 6 years after moving here.  We began as a just a small two man shop…

… and around 1999 Lou decided to branch out and become an expert in the nonsurgical-hair replacement side of the industry offering our clients an alternative to losing their hair. It quickly grew to where Lou needed help and enlisted me to also become an expert in the process. Many men see their identity through their appearance and hair loss becomes a psychological issue for them. We are happy to be able to provide a solution.

We moved the shop from Hilton Head Island to Bluffton in 2007 when the economy started to change for the worse. During the downturn and the multiple franchise shops that began to open we noticed a change in our business. I always have an attentive ear to our clients who would randomly say things like “Why don’t Barbers shave anymore?” or “Is it illegal to do straight razor shave?”  So we thought offering straight razor shaves would be a great way to set Barbers of the Lowcountry apart from its competitors.  I began developing a system that we now call “The Luxury Shave.”   It takes about 40 minutes and consists of a series of hot towels, pre-shaving lotions, cleansing soaps and soothing aftershave balms that will make any man feel like a king.  We also decided to introduce a couple of high-end wet shaving product lines that continue to fly off the shelves.

It’s a family affair … tell us a bit about that…

While growing up in New Orleans Brent always dreamed of working close by his father Lou.  When Brent graduated high school Lou suggested to Brent to go to barber school and work with him and his cousin who owns The Barber Shop on Hilton head and Brent did just that in 1993. We have a great working relationship and we never get tired of being around each other.

What do you most enjoy about living in Bluffton?

I love living in Bluffton because of its simple beauty and it’s so laid back.  Yes it is a much slower pace than New Orleans or any major city but that’s what is nice about it.  Last week my wife and I went to the concert in Palmetto Bluff and as we were sitting on the lawn listening to the music I looked and turned to her as the cool breeze off the May River hit my face, we are really blessed to be able to live in this area.  When you think of it there really is a lot to do here in Bluffton. 

You recently purchased a new home … tell us about it and the area you choose to live in…

My wife and I just recently had a home built in Southern Oaks at New Riverside.  We simply love the area and our neighbors.  We are fortunate to have a lake in our backyard where most mornings I sit on the back patio drinking my coffee thanking God for allowing us to live in the beautiful part of the country and some evenings sitting in the same place enjoying a nice Rocky Patel cigar watching the alligator in the water being taunted by the white egrets that fly by.

Homes for Sale in New Riverside


What are the top three tips you have for the proper shave?

I have three tips to get that barber shop close shave at home:

1)      Use a glycerin based shaving cream

2)      Use a high quality pre-shave oil

3)      Make sure your beard is thoroughly softened either by a hot shower or by applying hot towels on your face prior to the shave.

What have you seen change over the years in the barber business?

What I have noticed change in the barber industry over the past few years is exciting.  More barbers are shaving and more barbers are being recognized as producing art.  There has been a major insurgence in the industry with barbers really creating styles that are a cross between the 50s pomp with the current trend of a fade.  It’s a real stylish look that can be worn as a business man and someone going out on the town.  Very flexible style.  Because of the artistic flare and the more common use of straight razors that has risen in Barber shops more and more cosmetologist are crossing over to become barbers because the only difference between a barber and a cosmetologist is that Barbers can use a straight razor and cosmetologist can do manicures.

What are the top three things you tell out of town clients they can’t miss seeing in Bluffton?

Well one thing I tell people is if they do not have a home church and are looking for a place to experience a relationship with Jesus to visit First Baptist of Bluffton. Great people and it is not like your grandmas First Baptist Church. I would also have them visit the Bluffton Farmers Market on Thursdays and if you are like me and enjoy a nice cigar stop by Peaceful Henry’s!


I’ve been going to Brent for years and if you’re in need of a great haircut and shave in a fantastic barbershop give them a call at 843-815-4423. You can also find them online at or just stop by to see for yourself. They are located in Bluffton, in Sheridan Park, across from Sonic and next to  Island Bagel.


If you are in Hilton Head anytime in April, you will hear the phrase “Get Your Plaid On” many times, and know exactly what it references. It means the biggest tourist event of the year… it means over 100,000 people coming to the island that week…it means the biggest party this small island puts together every year…it means the RBC Heritage Tournament of Golf.

Herritage Golf Tournament

The RBC Heritage started back in 1969, and has had many sponsors over the years, but the original name, The Heritage of Golf, has endured, and the tournament evolved as one of the major golf happenings on the PGA tour schedule.


Sea Pines Plantation had just been born, this new water side Paradise, on little known at the time “Hilton Head Island”, South Carolina, and the marketing team decided the best way to get the news out was to have a golf tournament. It was a huge success back then, and this year on its 47th year, it has become Premier.  People come from all over the world to join this golf generated party. The merchants on Hilton Head gear up for it.

Restaurants serve special menus, gift shops sell “plaid” everything, bars have special events, with great musical groups. For the town of Hilton Head it is a fabulous week. Everyone can find fun things to do in Sea Pines, and all around Hilton Head Island.

 Heritage Golf Tournament

Once you are in the group of spectators,  you can’t help but get swept away in the fun.

Watching the golfers going from one hole to the next, having some excellent food from one of the many vendors, and possibly a special cocktail, which you normally would not have during the day…


It’s the most fun all year. Everyone is dressed for the festivities. There are  merchandise tents, and lots of local business set up hospitality suites to entertain and network, with their clients.


Most beautiful, and appreciated this year, was the opportunity to tour the brand new Heritage Club House, appropriately nestled next to the first tee and the ninth green, as well as the immaculately groomed putting green.


This year’s excitement culminated in a playoff, and the well respected Jim Furyk made the final putt against Kevin Kigsner  just in time before it started raining. They had to play both the 17th and 18th holes over again until there was  finally a winner, and Jim Furyk donned his plaid jacket.

All in all, it was a fantastic event,  and I can’t wait to “get my plaid on”

next year!



Jackie Riggins