National Men's Grooming Day 2018

The Buzz Cut: How to get it right

Suavely brushed back, messy and windswept, or in a full pompadour, the trend for men’s hair being longer on top is perennial and going nowhere, but has it become stale? Difficult to say, but it might explain why plenty of men (see here, here and here) have been clamouring to cut it all off. The king of no-nonsense haircuts, if you’re looking to stand out this winter, the buzz cut might be the way to go. The Mankind blog covers why, when and how to get the style.

Brad Pitt with a Buzz Cut and Angelina Jolie in Mr and Mrs Smith

Why choose a buzz cut?

It’s been a go-to hairstyle for those looking to convey a little extra roughness from time immemorial. But there are plenty of other reasons you may want to opt for the buzz cut. Aside from being the definitive no-fuss hair style, which is easily and cheaply maintained from the comfort of your own bathroom, it’s definitely an eye-catching look. And it’s not all about standing out from the crowd. A tight cropped haircut can really help to emphasise well-proportioned, angular facial features, or be the perfect complement to a well groomed beard.

Me and the beautiful yolanda

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When to get a buzz cut?

By now you are probably asking yourself “should i get a buzz cut?”. Well, If you have a lean face, strong jaw, and good cheekbones, you’re a shoo-in for the buzz cut look. Just be wary that if your forehead is already on the larger side, or your jaw is something you don’t want to be drawing attention to, tightly cropped hair will probably not be for you. Those with evenly proportioned diamond, square, or oval shaped faces will suit the look the best. If you don’t fall under that bracket, you may still be able to pull one off, but it’ll more than likely require some creative use of beard grooming to square off your jawline.

Don’t get the buzz cut if your features are rounder and softer. Definitely don’t fall victim to the misconception that a close cut adds an edge to your cherubic, boyish looks (it doesn’t). Do get it if you’re receding and no longer feel like keeping up the rescue effort. There’s definitely no shame in it. You should, however, make preparations – stubble or a full grown beard will soften the blow when you first take the plunge. Alternatively, accessories like glasses or even scarves (try to avoid hats, weather permitting) can add something back to your suddenly de-cluttered head.

A post shared by Jason Statham (@jasonstatham) on

Something else to bear in mind is that with your hairline still intact, it’ll be fairly clear that your buzz cut was elective. Employers in some industries may not look too kindly on this choice. Also worth noting is that the look should fundamentally be youthful, but if done incorrectly, appears juvenile. On a younger man with a good hairline, tightly cropped hair can be uncomfortably redolent of a teenage misstep.

Interview: Mathew Lewis-Carter, Model and Personal Trainer

Grooming Editor

Interview: Mathew Lewis-Carter, Model and Personal Trainer

Mathew Lewis-Carter is a model, personal trainer, and all round lovable ginger. We catch up with him to talk fitness, grooming, and taking on the online world.

2018-01-05 17:20:28By Vanessa

How to get a buzz cut?

Requesting a 1-all-over at the barber’s is one way of going about it, but we’d recommend investing in a good pair of clippers. When done right, the buzz cut should look sharp, so maintaining neatness and consistency by keeping on top of growth is crucial. Even if you decide the look is not for you, you can ease the regrowth process by occasionally re-shaving the sides to create contrast.

The method should be relatively straightforward. Use the clippers to remove all hair to the guide length that you’ve settled on. You should let this grow for a few days before shaving again. Things to consider are making sure you don’t miss patches – particularly around the ears and back of the head. Make sure you plan in advance for how you intend to blend with your facial hair. Having your sideburns begin to fade between the middle and top of your ear is usually smart, but look at pictures for inspiration first.

Another thing you may want to consider is tapering at your neckline. This is slightly more advanced, and will require you to arrange mirrors to see the back of your head (or putting your trust in someone else). Alternatively, a once-over at the barber’s every 3-5 shaves will more than likely suffice.

Hair styling products are, surprisingly, quite handy when it comes to the buzz cut. Light application of a product with low to medium hold will allow you to minimise the impact of lateral hair growth at the temples. This should help you to extend the time between shaves.


Check out more of our hair style guides here and here, and take a look at our full range of hair products.



Writer and expert

Creative storyteller. Believer in the power of natural ingredients and cruelty-free formulas. Always puts skincare first for a no-makeup look.