Reality hits as you face hair loss and realize that the kind of hair cut that you used to have does not work for your thinning crown any more.
Hubby was no exception. He had been going to the same neighborhood barber for more than a decade. And yes, ending up with the same hairstyle that he found increasingly tough to manage as his hair got relatively thinner (in comparison to his younger days).
But to say that the thickness and texture of his hair went back to that when he was younger, would be lying.
So I coaxed him into looking at haircuts specifically styled for thinning hair and even persuaded him to visit other hair salons, instead of the same barber.
Five Haircuts Identified
1. Classic Short
I like this preppy clean-cut look with the top, sides and back kept short.
The idea of keeping the hair really short is to draw attention away from overall thinning hair.
2. Pompadour or Quiff
The pompadour and quiff hair cuts are similar in that both are characterized by short sides and back with relatively longer, more voluminous front being swept back. A classic pompadour hairstyle is that spotted by Elvis Presley.
As I understand, while pompadour (named inspired by French Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, also known as Madame de Pompadour, a mistress of King Louis XV who ruled as King of France from 1715 to 1774) looks really heavy on top, the quiff is more subtle.
But can you pull off the pompadour or quiff hairstyle if your hair is thinning?
While the classic pompadour which features long, thick hair styled on top of the head might be beyond the reach of those with thinning hair (particularly at the crown), I thought going for the quiff would be more realistic.
Creating a mini quiff would be a great alternative to the pompadour look which requires greater height and volume (of hair) to successfully achieve.
3. The Buzz
This is one of the most versatile hairstyles because anybody can wear it regardless of face shape, the texture or color of hair.
And the best part? It is definitely great for men with receding hairlines!
The buzz cut is deemed a low-maintenance cut as it is a style that you can possibly pull off yourself in the comfort of your own home. (All you need is a pair of good clippers and loads of confidence).
The key to doing it right is to have a close crop that is the same length all over.
For those with advanced thinning hair, this could be an ideal option.
This is another easy to manage, low maintenance hairstyle.
It is for those who are contemplating on a buzz cut, yet not fully ready to go all short.
The top part for the hair is kept longer than the sides and back (but not as long as in pompadour). This is then pulled forward to the front (like in above image of Goerge Clooney).
A slight variation to the crop: For those whose hair is still thick on the crown, creating a choppy, messy look can take the attention away from thinning hair (instead of going full crop).
5. Comb Over
Personally, this is my least favorite. A typical feature of this cut is to have the sides short and then pulling over the longer part of the hair to one side. It’s like using that longer side to cover the part with lesser hair.
Hubby had subconsciously been sweeping the longer top part of his hair to one side. I truly dislike that look. I associate it with the receding hairline, middle-aged syndrome.
If you happen to walk in the wind without applying any styling agents, you would be in danger of having that part of scarce hair exposed as the hair on top is blown by the wind.
I know first-hand because ….. it happened to hubby.
Besides, I feel it’s just a step before ….
Now that we had identified the five haircuts for thinning crown, here comes the ultimate challenge!
My ULTIMATE Challenge: To get hubby to try another salon – he was just so resistant to having his head of hair being under someone else’s clippers! Urgh!
The previous barber had committed the ultimate offense of leaving the top right side of hubby’s hair longer (than the left side).
Perhaps it wasn’t the barber’s intention but this has created a bad habit in hubby, who would pull this longer part over the thinning part of the hair.
And Then The Change
It happened in March this year (2019) as we were walking along a street in Melbourne, Australia.
We passed a small salon (unisex). A hairstylist was cutting the hair of a man who seemed to have similar hair texture and thickness as hubby’s. The hairstylist was working his clippers (ever so gently) through the right side of the customer’s head.
For some reason, hubby took to the way that the hairstylist used his tool, taking his time in trimming the sides.
After much coaxing and cajoling that he needed to try something new, hubby finally braved himself to step into the salon.
Haircut Number? What’s That?
Hubby clarified that he wanted the bottom sides and back to be short.
He was asked which haircut number he wanted. Ermm, that caught hubby off-guard because he didn’t know what the hairstylist was referring to.
It was later that we understood that the haircut number refers to clipper guard sizes used by barbers/hairstylists.
Most clipper sets come with 8 guard sizes. Each clipper size represents the amount of hair that will be left when used. The lower the number, the shorter the hair that will be left on the head.
Popular clipper brands like Andis, Oster and Wahl come with guards in increments of 1/8 of an inch. So number 1 haircut is the shortest with 1/8 inch of hair left on the head. Number 2 implies the client will be left with 1/4 inch length of hair – longer than number 1 haircut.
Hubby didn’t bring any images to show the hairstylist but I believe he finally chose medium – number 4 haircut (about 1/2 inch left). He didn’t want his hair to be drastically short.
Just FYI, you can also opt for number “0” which essentially means no guard will be used. The end result is an almost clean shaven head with 1/16 inch of hair left.
I can’t say how elated I was seeing hubby finally made that haircut change.
It felt good to be right – my suggestion that a change in haircut (in consideration of his thinning hair) would make him look better. More importantly, he can now manage his hair much better even with little hair styling products and … yes even in strong winds.
So if you are contemplating on making that change of haircuts, don’t hesitate. Give it a go. If it doesn’t turn out as you wanted, you can always go for the buzz!