The divisive hipster hairstyle is making a comeback, from Paul McCartney to Jude Law. Months of lockdown were hard for many reasons. It has led to the return of the “man bun” – perhaps unsurprisingly and much to the horror of many.

This divisive style has seen a surprising revival, with Joe Wicks, Jude Law, and rapper Post Malone all sporting it. Paul McCartney finished 2020 with a surprise No. 1 album, and, perhaps even more surprising, a new haircut. While on holiday in St Barts, the former Beatle was seen with a section of his hair tied up.

man wearing gray dress shirt

Garrett Munce, Men’s Health’s grooming editor, stated that “I believe we will see way more guys having long hair in 2021.” “Some people realized [during lockdown] that they really like long hair. Some do it for practical reasons. “After 2020, when most of us spent the majority of the year in quarantine and were unable to cut our hair, haircuts became less common.”

Man buns are not new. Jared Leto and Cristiano Ronaldo have all tried it. This style became popular in 2010 when it was associated with the second wave “hipster”, which is the shift in social archetype from “white hipster to “green hipster”, according to Mark Greif, author of NY Mag.

Alex Rayner, a writer who has written extensively on the  subculture, said that he describes the white hipster wearing a trucker cap with a vest. “The “green hipster” was, in contrast, a person with long hair who rides a fixed-wheel bicycle. It’s a more relaxed image, and I believe the man bun is similar to that.”

Munce stated that he associates the man bun with the lumberjack style – beard and flannel shirt; stiff cuffed jeans; work boots; tattoos. It was a reaction against the slick, coiffed and overly thought-out style that young people wanted.

It’s no accident that the man bun became synonymous with Silicon Valley tech bros – “the kind of guy that vapes while riding an electric scooter from home to his job,” said Charlie Teasdale (Esquire’s styling director). This was parodied visually in television shows Black Mirror and Family Guy.

The haircut is a nod to its historical roots and a way of sidestepping gender norms. Teasdale said that the haircut is a tribute to masculinity’s traditional view. Others wear their buns more fluidly to show gender fluidity.

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