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No More Shaved Heads! A Gentle Plea for the Return of Men’s Hair

Has anyone else wondered at the vast popularity of the most anti-hair hairstyle for men– the shaved head?

First, let me apologize to all those who already have shaved heads, as do many of my male friends. I mean no insult by saying that though you look fine, it would be nice to see your hair.

I don’t know exactly how the shaved-head trend got started, but it seems to have gotten stuck. Is it not time to move on and to bring back the color, texture, sensuality and personality evinced by hair?

Boys and men of all ages now share what was once thought to be an extreme fashion. This unusual multigenerational agreement on style may be due to the unique benefits of head shaving for young and old alike: For the boys, teens and young men, who emulate shaved-headed TV and sports heroes, the no-nonsense military look carries a certain attitude of toughness. For some men who just never knew what to do with their hair, it was a radical and simple solution– just eliminate it. For many middle-aged and older men, the shaved head trend solved the problem of male pattern baldness in that it equalized those who were and were not bald by nature. Thus, if you have shaved head, you no longer have to worry on how to cut your own hair. 

There is nothing wrong with any of the above listed reasons! However, much, too, can be said of seeing men’s hair, whether it completely covers their heads or not. Hair adds an enormous degree of definition to a face and helps to establish one’s visible identity.

Quite frankly, many young men with shaved heads seem to look very much alike. They probably do not realize this when they look in the mirror and see their own familiar face, but to the rest of the world, their shaved head makes them look somewhat anonymous by removing an element of color and shape from their faces.

The aesthetics of hairstyles certainly do characterize an era, especially to those who are just coming of age. By the time I was a pre-teenager, the Beatles had grown out their hair and had beards. Beards together with long hair had a particular appeal to my generation. This refusal to cut one’s hair carried an aura of sensuality and freedom which stood in direct opposition to the tightly controlled and cropped Brill-creamed conformity of the 1950s.

Thus, It would be wrong for me to assume that the shaved male head does not have as strong an appeal to young women today as long hair and beards had to us back them.

What does perplex me is that the shaved head has truly defied the usual cyclical demands of fashion and commerce and has remained with us for so long. As we all know large eyeglasses of a few years ago gave way to tiny eyeglasses and are now morphing into moderately sized glasses of today. Thus the population is lured into shifting their inner aesthetic and spending some money on new glasses (or shoes or dresses or the like). Why has it taken so long for the shaved head look to be shifted away from by the commercial powers that be? Are their not men’s hair products, nutrients and accessories waiting to be purchased by a whole population of men who are beginning to grow out their hair?

I offer the following prediction: In the next five years, the appeal of men’s hair will return, perhaps even long hair, along with some heretofore unthought of hair accouterments. And perhaps beards be back as well. And though it will only be another passing trend, at least for a while the combination of hair on the head and face will be though by many, and particularly by the young, to be much cooler than the shaved head of today.

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