American Boys' Hair Styles Chronology: 21st Century

Figure 1.--

The 2000s

After the turn of the 20th century close cropped hair has become increasingly popular both in America and Europe. Not all boys have cropped hair. Most have hair long enough to be combed, but many had quite close cropped hair. any have A reader writes, "Now it seems that boys are at a slum in style where they just shave their heads and wear baggy clothes--as HBC mentions." The opopularity of close cropped hair, seems to have wained by mid decade. A reader writes after the beginning of the 2004-05 school yeat, "An update on boys hair styles. More and more Middle School boys are wearing their hair longer these days. Short, stylish cuts have been the norm since the late 80's, but in the past year you see more and more boys growing their hair out. While not as long as kids wore it in the 60's and 70's, it's still much longer than before. Probably 25 percent now grow their hair longer and not combing or brushing it in any way so that it has a "messy look". It seems most popular with the Middle School set, but you see some high schoolers with long hair now and a few younger kids with longer hair, although not as messy as the Middle Schoolers wear it. It will be interesting to see if this trend is just a short-lived thing for a few kids, or we see a return to the 60-70s hair styles. My personal opinion is that it's just a passing fad. One thing though, you see less and less crewcuts now. Boys are wearing it at least long enough to comb." An author in USA Today provides additional information about the trend, "Guys are going to great lengths to look stylish these days. Gone is the short and spiky coif that has dominated young male domes in recent years. Boys are channeling Cassidy brothers David and Shaun during their pinup heyday, growing out their locks into layered, feathery shags. Curly-topped lads are modeling the mops made famous by that other '70s stud, Willie Aames. Also crowning kids: 1960s Beatles bobs and 70s Afros." [Barket] A reader reports in 2006, "I have noticed that suddenly in the last year there are significantly more boys with longer hair. The trend seems to includes boys of all ages from 2-years-old and up. It's become common again for boys to have hair long enough to cover their ears and the back of their neck and a lot of them have hair that is shoulder length or a few inches long in the back. Children today would mostly be children of parents who grew up in the 1980s and early 1990s which I remember as the period when, in general, it was the most common for boys to have longer hair. An example of how much things have changed in the past year is to compare the length of the hair of the two main characters on the Disney Channel program "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody" (which is mentioned in the USA Today article) in episodes from 2005 and episodes from 2006. Zack and Cody have notably longer hair styles. This program is one of the most popular among American elementary (primary) school children. A hair stylist in 2007 tells us that she notes more mothers requesting longer hair cuts. A California reader writes in 2006, "Here in California, you see everything from VERY short hair to the "hippie" lengths of the 60's. The interesting thing is that the styles are all across the board instead of predominantly long (60's-70's) and short 80's-late 90's). It seems now that although the "trendy" length is long (in no particular style); most boys go with what they like best. Actually it's kind of a 'living museum' now of boy's hair styles from the 1950s to the present. The only thing I don't see is the heinous "butch" cut of the 50s and 60s. I think that most boys, at least in California, still prefer the shorter styles to the longer ones."

The 2010s

The 2020s


Barket, Brad. "Boys spike the short cut for the shaggy look," USA Today (July 28, 2006).


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Created: 9:18 PM 7/28/2006
Last edited: 9:46 AM 7/8/2007