How to Grow and Style a Mullet in 3 Easy Steps

With a great mullet comes great responsibility.

Newsflash: The mullet haircut is still going strong. This iconic blast from the past continues to evolve with every decade (we know, we’re equally perplexed and amazed), and in even gnarlier news, it’s making quite the strong comeback in 2020.

Traditionally represented by longer locks in the back and shorter strands in the front, a fresh and modern mullet iteration has taken the streets these days. From the looks of it, the hairstyle we’re seeing has evolved out of its backwater roots and has now become one of the coolest hairstyles for men, especially for those willing to experiment with a punkier, grungier vibe.

the mullet haircut retro
The Retro Mullet: Business in the front, party in the back (plus a lot of feathering at the crown!).

Unlike the traditional mullet, you don’t need a head full of long hair (a.k.a. “party in the back” locks) to achieve this modern iteration. In addition, it can now work on straight, curly or wavy-haired guys alike.

the mullet haircut long
Super-long mullets require a lot more maintenance (and attitude!). Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

However, with a great mullet comes great responsibility. Read on to discover how to get the perfect mullet:

mullet haircut with bangs
The modern twist of the mullet haircut. Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

With its new, even shorter length at the top, this modern-day spin on this vintage style is sexy, stylish and quite sharp.

Step 1: First, you’ll need at least an inch of hair all around to achieve this hair cut. Since you’re aiming for something more contemporary, you’ll need to give your stylist some specifics.

Step 2: Once this style is cut and groomed, it can be worn as a casual or formal hairstyle. The key is not to end up with a super long rat-tail.

Step 3: Ask for a length at the back of your hair that you’re most comfortable with. A length that reaches the midpoint of the back of your neck would be ideal if you have longer hair. Be sure that the proportions are cut right, i.e. Give your front and back the right amount of balance and the ability to complement one another with some expert shearing and layering—or you’ll end up with too much disconnect between the top and bottom sections.

the mullet haircut modern
The Modern Mullet: Less feathering, more punk edge.

For example, ask for a mullet with the right amount of balance all around. You may opt for a low fade at the side, or if you have curly-textured hair, leave your sides just about the same length as the top of your hair. This plays well the longer length at the back, it looks more uniform and not faux hawk-ish. The top should be cut with just the right amount of length, like long enough for a sleek gelled look or a fun quiff, so you can carry out your daily styling routine.

men's weekend medium hairstyles quiff
Tucking in your hair behind your ears is an instant style upgrade. Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

Step 1: Depending on the direction your hair grows, brush or comb the sides of your hair forward or backward.

Pro tip: most men tend to brush their strands backward.

Step 2: Apply gel or pomade like Dove Men+Care Defining Pomade to add shine and keep your sides in place.

Step 3: Comb the top section of your hair backward and mold into a pompadour-like style. If you want an edgy and spiky effect, rake through some wax or gel through your hair. Use your hands to give it a slightly edgy finish, and comb the sides of your top inward. For a smoother effect, (most favored by curly- and wavy-haired guys), use AXE Messy Look Matte Wax to slick your hair back, using your fingers to mold your locks as you create volume.

The mullet is all about maintenance and grooming, so don’t miss out on your weekly or bi-weekly trims, especially if you’ve got a super low fade on the sides. For those with curly or wavy hair, the help of stylers can keep your mullet cut in check. When the hair tends to grow out a bit, it won’t look too obvious. Your sides will easily blend in with the overall length of your cut. But don’t go too long without a trim!

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