The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Hair This Summer? Buzz It Off.
Ditching the luscious locks has some surprise benefits, especially during the sultry summertime
Few physical traits have the magnetic draw of a good head of hair. Chalamet’s wavy locks are at least partially the reason for his status as a generational heartthrob, just like DiCaprio’s choppy part before him, or Clooney’s classic cut before him. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest that millions of men, from Gen Z to baby boomers, take their grooming — and more specifically, their hair — very seriously.
So don’t get mad at us for what we’re about to say, because it comes from a good place: if you haven’t already, you should take a razor to your head ASAP. No tapered fades, no slimed down coif — we’re talking a fully buzzed head, pronto.
For those who recoil at the idea or a bare scalp, we can assure you that this is not that. “A buzz cut is simply an all-over-the-head, same-length haircut,” says Chris Roberts, a professional barber at High and Tight. Using only clippers, the classic buzz typically leaves around 1/8″ to 1 inch of hair to play with (although lengths can vary), as opposed to a fully shaved head.
To some, the seasonal snip might feel like an archaic relic of decades past — a depression-era hold-out for those less than interested in the merits of dry shampoo. But there are actually a variety of benefits to the militant practice, especially come sultry summertime.
Follow the Leader
Benefit number one? Looking like a certified hunk. The buzz puts your rugged features on full display, isolating the likes of your cheekbones and jaw for a strong, full-faced look. Just ask Channing Tatum, the modern man of the badass buzzcut, having woven the short-hair into his trademark brawny look. Michael B. Jordan’s crispy crop is further proof of a buzzed head’s magical merits. Even David Harbour’s Hopper, a previously long-haired, soft-bodied teddy bear, has embraced the style (along with becoming unexpectedly ripped) adding to the plethora of hair-‘speration crammed into the most recent season of Stranger Things.
The new crop of short-haired superstars, too, are an exceptional totem pole for anyone interested in the buzz-cut convert lifestyle. Musician and Homer founder Frank Ocean (recently in the news for something completely unrelated) and his various dye jobs have been a temptation to pull the trigger for years, and skater/actor/certified hottie Evan Mock’s pink ‘do is enough to make even the most conservative side-parters reconsider.
The Buzz’s Surprising Benefits
Beyond strict aesthetical aspirations, there are myriad benefits to buzzing the dome piece. Obviously, it’s a tool in the arsenal of the follically-challenged; for those fellas with new thinning hair, the simple buzz is a great unifier — a surefire way to reduce your chances of telegraphing male-pattern baldness (MPB), masking lightening scalps and receding hairlines. Conversely, it’s the one of the more dignified ways to handle the unfortunate reality of MPB that, according to one study, affects over 50% of men over 40. Is his shit cooked, or is he just going for that “escaped inmate” look? The world will never know.
There are other hair-health benefits, as well. While buzzing your head won’t make your hair grow back “stronger” — that’s a common misconception, as explained by Lucinda Ellery, a hair losss expert of of Los Angeles — it can help remove damaged or dead hair from the scalp, allowing for an expedited healthy grow out. With shorter hair, the chances of damaging or pulling out follicles greatly drops, meaning inadventant shedding — hair loss unrelated to the genetic cues of your dermis — dips, as well.
A Dermatologist’s (And a Minimalist’s) Dream
Scalp care, which plays an increasingly recognized role in hair health, becomes a breeze with a sexy buzz. The Lee Paces and Chris Hemsworths of the world surely have to deal with the build-up, breakage and the barrage of infuriating irritants that come with serious cranium foliage, but exfoliating (gross as it may be, dead cell buildup is a common hair growth determinant) is much easier with the simple style. There are implications for your hair’s natural oil, your general skincare…plus, you save a ton on shampoo.
Of course all of this is ignoring the best reason to go short this summer: it’s fucking hot. The buzz cut provides a simple solution with an equally simple equation. Less hair, less maintenance, fewer problems. It’s a timeless style that refreshes your hair, revitalizes your scalp, and, if you do it right, looks really solid.
There are certainly reasons to avoid the buzz — we strongly urge you to probe for cysts or bumps on the head pre-buzz, lest your co-workers (or worse, children) start referring to you as “lumpy Joe” behind your back — but for those willing and able, it’s just about the best thing you can do this summer. Hit the barbershop, or grab an appropriately-powerful razor yourself. We’ll see you on the other, much cooler side.
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