Here’s a famous joke that says men have three basic hairstyles: parted, un-parted and departed.
So it’s perhaps surprising that – given our relative limitations in that department – we still make sizeable mistakes on everything from cuts to colour.
Even some of the Premiere League’s most famous footballers, despite being rich and surrounded by stylists, are an testament to this. Just look at David Backham’s disastrous corn rows, Marcelo Balboa’s mullet or David Seaman’s ponytail. All great men, all bad moments in hair history.
Not that I’m any better, of course. I once had black hair with blue highlights and, until recently, believed that a simple side-parting was impossible to get wrong. That was until friends collectively steered me in the direction of Soho’s Joe and Co, where I finally got schooled on my so-called style by their resident expert, Hayley Kemm.
An award-winning barber (note: not hairdresser), the 34 year-old is so popular she boasts a secret celebrity client list.
“In many ways men’s haircuts are trickier than women’s because they’re so precise,” she says. “This increases the importance of a good barber, because nuance is key: the smallest error can make a surprising difference. Also, because many men’s cuts are close the scalp, there’s little that can be done to disguise a botched job once it’s done”.
Thus, to help other avoid dodgy barnets, here’s her guide to the five most common mistakes men make in the chair – and how to avoid them:
- Less is more
This old adage has stuck around for a reason – especially when it comes to gluey, gunky gels and sticky sprays.
“People often think results improve in correlation to how much product they use, but the reverse is true,” she says. “Too much of anything will be overkill and either stiffen or weigh down, but if a product isn’t working with minimal use, chances are it’s the formulation that’s the problem, not the amount.
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