BRONX (PIX11) — There are rarely any days off for Bronx barber David Castillo this time of the year. His services are always in high demand.
Whether it’s walk-in appointments or traveling out to the New York Giants practice facility in East Rutherford, New Jersey, all of Castillo’s customers keep coming back for “that custom” fresh cut.
“I never would have imagined being in the position I’m in now,” Castillo said about his rise as a celebrity barber. “The biggest stars have sat in my chair and got that custom.”
Castillo, who’s better known as Davey Cuts, has an endless roster of star athletes: Hall of Famer Derek Jeter, two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning, two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, Yankees superstar Aaron Judge and Giants captain Julian Love are just a few of the high profile names that have sat in Castillo’s chair.
Many of those athletes can be seen at his barbershop, which looks more like a mini sports museum in the Bronx. There are dozens of pictures of stars hanging up on the wall, along with some rare sports memorabilia in glass cases. If you ask Castillo about any item in the shop, there’s bound to be a special story behind it.
Cutting hair comes naturally to Castillo, who is a second-generation barber. The bonus was when Davey Cuts became the Yankees and Giants official team barber.
“I remember my dad had a barbershop in Honduras with a bunch of Yankee Stadium pictures and Giants stadium, so that’s how I became a hard-core fan,” Castillo explained to PIX11 News. “I feel like I’m living my dream now working with two great organizations.”
Being the go-to guy to keep New York’s top athletes looking fresh didn’t happen overnight. Davey Cuts received an unexpected call in 2013.
“My first professional athlete was Brook Lopez when he was with the Nets,” said Castillo. “He was looking to get a fresh cut for the All-Star game, and I got called up.”
Nothing has been the same since Castillo cut Lopez’s hair. A few years later, the Bronx barber connected with former Giants running back Rashad Jennings and former Yankee Jacoby Ellsbury.
While Jennings and Ellsbury are now retired, Castillo got his foot in the door with his two favorite teams and gained their trust.
At times, Castillo has to pinch himself when thinking of his journey after moving to the United States from Honduras when he was seven. He hopes his story is a reminder to his three daughters that hard work pays off.
“Things get hard but if you stay in your lane and stay dedicated, things will turn around,” Castillo said. “I would love to tell the young kinds be patient. Things don’t get easy but if you work hard, all your hard work will be worth it.”