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Last updated: August 03, 2017

Dudes With Long Hair: Remember the Three Cs

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Among celebrities, athletes and regular guys, hair length is creeping closer and closer to the collar—and in some cases beyond—as the crisply barbered hair trend is slowly starting to swing toward longer lengths. Thom Priano agrees that more and more guys are growing out their hair, citing examples of male models with flowing locks on the recent catwalks. “My friends at GQ magazine have also noticed the trend,” Thom says.


Professionals, please keep this in mind: long hair does not equal unkempt, unhealthy, unclean hair. “The whole thing with long hair is to make other men and women envious,” Thom asserts. “Everyone should look at a guy with long hair and think, ‘I wish that was my hair!’” So how should you advise your long-haired male clients to cultivate covetable hair? It’s all about the three Cs! 


Cut: Like anyone growing out their hair, guys tend to client to every inch and loathe to submit to a single snip. Big mistake, says Thom. “I believe guys should get a shape cut into their hair. It can be slightly layered or heavily layered—whatever he’s comfortable with. It’s important to get rid of dry, split ends. Long hair must look healthy.”


Condition: Once guys’ hair gets longer, they fail to realize that the soap and rinse routine that worked when they had, like, an inch of hair, simply won’t fly. Scalp oil doesn’t travel as readily down the lengths, and as a result, long hair can become dry and brittle. Even worse, it could start clumping and collection into unwanted dreds. “You need to educate your guys with long hair about using a good moisturizing shampoo and condition,” says Thom. “He has to switch gears.”


Color: Long hair is long hair, whether it’s sported by a guy or a girl, and long hair on anyone can be enhanced with a little highlighting or balayage. “If it’s done right, it will look like it was kissed by the sun,” says Thom. “It doesn’t have to look feminine—it can simply make long hair look more beautiful. Look at guys like Jared Leto and Chris Hemsworth. They look sexy!”


More Tips for Men’s Manes

Gather Loosely: If he’s going to pull his lengths into a man-tail or a man bun, make sure it’s done casually. “He should use his hands to comb his hair, then grab the lengths and secure with a coated elastic. For a roughed-up man bun, pull the tail through one-and-a-half times if it’s long enough,” advises Thom. “It’s ok if a few pieces hang out around the face,” he adds. “That’s more modern than those tight, sleek, ‘80s tails.”


Take Control: Like women, a good styling product for guys can help control unwanted frizz and shine. “A formula like R+Co Aircraft Pomade Mousse is marvelous on longer, curly hair,” says Thom. “And a lightweight oil like R+Co Tinsel Smooth Oil is great for straight and curly hair types.”


Know When to Fold ‘Em: If time has claimed too much hair—either on top or throughout—it may be time to submit to the shears. “For most guys, long hair should go when it’s no longer thick or luxurious,” Thom believes. “That’s the time to talk to your client about transitioning into a cut that will make his hair look fuller and healthier.”


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Thom Priano