Rockabilly barber teen takes on nation's best
The 19-year-old head barber at Tommy Guns Barber Shop in Maroochydore is about to face off against 11 barbers from across Australia this weekend at the Barber Wars competition in Sydney.
"You've got half an hour to do a razor fade, then you've got another half an hour to do a freestyle haircut of your choice," Miss Brakels said.
"I really like old-school barbering, I really like haircuts from around 1940s, 1950s, so I'm going to do a big pompadour and a skin razor fade.
"In such a short amount of time, it's real tricky."
Miss Brakels juggles barbering with her pin-up modelling career, often filling both roles at rockabilly festivals.
The Buderim resident is already the face of Sunshine Coast muscle car dealer Adults Only Car Shop and has worked with clothing and hair companies across Australia.
In the past year she has won the Miss Beachfest Down Under, Miss Maiden Ink and Miss Rods and Rockabilly pageants.
Next month she will compete in the Miss Pinup Australia finals against nine other competitors for the Miss Perfect Pinup category title.
"I've done pageants before, but I haven't done Miss Pinup Australia before, which is really nerve-racking and really exciting," Miss Brakels said.
Miss Brakels started her hairdressing apprenticeship when she was 15, but soon found a passion for barbering and is now qualified in both trades.
"Within the first couple of months of my apprenticeship, I fell really deeply into doing men's hair and barbering, rather than having a preference for doing women's hair," she said.
"(In barbering) there's a lot more techniques behind cuts and the way that you do it, and the speed and precision in the haircuts.
"Barbering really consumes your whole life, it's a real culture to be a part of."
Initially finding it impossible to find a barbering job on the Sunshine Coast, she had to commute to Brisbane for work.
Now with five barbers and two apprentices under her direction in the shop, she is finally living her dream.
"I absolutely love what I do for a living; slinging cutthroat razors is my passion," she said.