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The Rise of Retro: Vintage Men's Hairstyles Making a Comeback

The Rise of Retro: Vintage Men's Hairstyles Making a Comeback

Coco Chanel famously once said; “fashion changes, but style endures”, and here at Ruffians we’d have to agree. 

Don’t get us wrong, we love keeping at the forefront of hair trends - edgy fauxhawks, severe undercuts and flowing mullets are some of the things that give our barbers the biggest buzz (sorry for the pun). However, we’re also strong advocates for the classics, always making sure that our team of talented snippers never forget the art of creating the perfect short, back and sides or a sweep back. 

So, perhaps unsurprisingly, when we saw more vintage styles coming back into the fashion fold we were delighted. We’ve been in the game long enough to know that the world of fashion spreads seamlessly into hair, so it’s no surprise that we’ve been seeing more retro looks leaving our barbershops lately.

Here we take a look at some of our favourite vintage hairstyles which are becoming very “of the moment”, again.

The Pompadour 

Where else would we start but with the a true classic; the pompadour?

If we rewind back only a decade or so then pomps were a BIG thing. The final few series of Mad Men were being binged and the most snapped male models had swapped prominent cheekbones for plentiful tattoos and mahoosive beards. There was one thing in common across both trends; an immaculate glossy pompadour. And now it’s back!

Cut in a short, tapered style on the back and sides with the fringe left much longer to sweep up and back off the face, the “pomp” is a haircut that is instantly recognisable. Worn through generations by everyone from Elvis Presley to Leo Di Caprio. 

It’s a style that can be parted for a smart, clean look that your mum would be chuffed with or swept back loosely for more of a less-is-more vibe. Team with a low fade or skin taper for a modern take on the OG. 

The French Crop 

In more recent times the crop has been synonymous with aggressively faded sides and a short blunt fringe, however, the original French Crop was a softer scissor cut style worn by the likes of Steve Macqueen. 

For this style the hair is cut to around finger depth all over, connected throughout and heavily textured. It is just long enough that a bit of product can be added to accentuate the choppy aesthetic. 

Like most styles, the French Crop can be tailored to the individual. Edges can be left soft and natural to give an effortless feel or sharpened to give a neater look. Either way, this is a haircut that is flattering to many face shapes and requires minimal maintenance. 

The Ivy League

The Ivy League haircut was born out of 1950’s America. It’s similar to a crew cut or a crop but with a little more length left through the front to allow the hair to be pushed from one side to the other to create a neat side part. The preppy take if you like.

Generally, the hair is kept shorter through the crown and the sides are tightly cut with clippers. It’s a pretty easy cut to style and requires minimal day-to-day maintenance. A fingernail sized amount of styling paste or clay worked through dry hair should do the trick. You may need to use a hairdryer to direct the fringe if you have stubborn hair.

However, though the styling routine is pretty simple, you’ll need to head to the barbershop on a monthly basis to keep your Ivy League trim looking neat.

The Kurt Russell

If you’ve been tempted by the recent mullet craze but feel like it may be a bit out there for you, or if you want something in vogue whilst keeping your locks longer, then now is the time to channel your inner Kurt Russell. 

Heavily layered, with a soft flowing silhouette that’s heavy over the ears and at the neckline, it’s a look that screams of 80’s nostalgia, and we’re here for it. 

Some people are calling it the “Wolf Cut” but we feel that it’d be doing Mr. Russell a disservice if we didn’t name it directly after the man himself. We’ll also accept The Patrick Swayze. 

The Moustache

Yes, we’re fully aware that the moustache is not a hairstyle, however, we’re making an exception in adding it to the list for two reasons: 1) nothing is more retro than a ‘tache and 2) it’s so hot right now. 

A couple of years back when thinking of a moustache it would likely have conjured up images of Wall Street Traders in pinstripe suits or dads wearing stonewashed denim whilst tending to the barbecue. Well, fast forward forty odd years and the humble lip caterpillar is back with a bang, with everyone from Brad Pitt to The Weekend rocking one of late. 

The moustache de rigueur is one that is teamed with long stubble or a short beard, giving a more relaxed take on a classic. 

It goes without saying, but if you want to join the retro bandwagon and try out any of these looks then we’re always delighted to help you achieve your hair goals from any of our five barbershops


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