The Well Groomed Man
For many men, barbershops evoke a sense of nostalgia. You might recall a simpler time in life when you could get a cut and shave while reading a paper, or maybe you visited a barbershop with a father or grandfather as a young child.
Barbering has made a tremendous resurgence in the past few years, drawing from the rich heritage of the barbershops of the 1940s and 1950s. In my world of hairdressing, barbering is truly an evolved craft, with poetic roots. Flat tops, pompadours, fades, straight razor shaves and beard grooming are at the forefront of men’s hair styles and directly relate to fashion’s hottest trends, including the tailored suit, brogue-style shoes and raw denim pieces.
Barbering took a hit in the 1980s as the androgynous look had its heyday; men were going to salons to get perms and purchasing cases of hairspray and hair gel, which turned rock-hard upon application. This was my era, and although I remember it as a glorious time, I cringe as I look at old photos.
Fast-forward to 2014, and we’re celebrating the well-groomed man. Tailoring plays a critical role in clothing today, from suits and dress shirts to classic denim, both of which focus on the slimmer silhouette. It stands to reason that the trend in men’s grooming and hair also follows a similar trajectory.
Today, we equate the polished look with success. For men’s hair, clean cut does not mean boring. From the tight fade to a short cropped cut, variety reigns. Tight fades can be either low or high. Leaving the top a little longer allows for more versatility for your look. With a little pomade like Wella’s Smooth Brilliance, the hair can be combed smooth for a business and formal feel or left tousled for a more casual, weekend vibe. If a tight fade isn’t your thing, try a short cropped cut. This look leaves more hair on the sides and in back. It can be dramatically altered simply by moving the part line from a hard part, which is actually shaved into the head or a soft part that is made using a comb.
Just like tribal tattoos, big scruffy beards are passé. When the anti-trend does in fact, become a trend, the fashion world moves along. Facial hair should also be well kept; I suggest shaping beards and mustaches. A properly preened beard and mustache is timeless and does wonders to accentuate a weak jawline. To keep skin young and pesky ingrown hairs at bay, you might consider getting regular facials and at-home exfoliation. Complete your look with a manicure from your local spa or salon. A surefire way to get exactly what you need is to look for a sports manicure or gentlemen’s manicure on the menu of services.
Diego Raviglione has more than 26 years of experience as a creative artistic hair designer and educator. His work has been published in magazines such as Elle, Allure, InStyle, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan and Elle Girl, as well as American Salon, Launchpad, Behind the Chair, Modern Salon and other leading industry publications. Diego’s ingenuity has also been featured on the runways of L.A. Fashion Week and on stage at the edgy Lollapalooza concert series, where he served as head stylist to featured acts.