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THE GENTLEMen's DEPARTMENT

THE GENTLEMen's DEPARTMENT

November 10, 2017

Is the Quiff Over?

The quiff is a classic. From Ryan Gosling to Zac Effron, a proper quiff is a thing of beauty. It doesn’t hurt that the ladies love it, too. Yet, this is a hairstyle that has been around for decades, and we haven’t seen anything new from it in a few years. Is it really a timeless classic, or are exceptionally good looking men carrying a dead 'do?

 

A Little History

 

For those of you who may be unfamiliar, the quiff is a classic look that hails back to the rock n roll era of the 50s. It took to true fame when James Dean and Elvis rocked the style during their breakout performances. In the decades since, it has undergone many transformations and revisions, but the essence is always the same: vertical hair in the front to shape the face and make a bold statement. Still, what was once a revolutionary sign of rebellion has seen a long limelight in the mainstream.

 

Evolutions of the Quiff

 

Over the years, people have reimagined this classic 'do to extremes. The original was a short hair style. It may have added volume, but it could still be seen as a derivative of the classic crew cut. Parts were common.

 

As the rockers grew more bold, the cuts grew longer. The textures also became less define. The modern variant is often referred to as the “texture quiff.” The rigid stylings of the 50s and 60s gave way to the free love influences of the 70s and the overall look lost some of its rigidity.

 

From there we moved into the 90s (the 80s were a lost decade for hair and we tend to turn a blind eye). Straight lines were back in style as the quiff fused with hip hop stylings. Shaved sides and a harsh texture gave rise to what is now called the “psychobilly quiff.” It’s an extreme version, and today only the strongest jawlines can pull it off.

 

After the 90s, big hair made a comeback, but it was more controlled than the lost works of the 80s. Eventually, the quiff gave over to the pompadour (think Bruno Mars), and this brings us closer to what is seen today. Unfortunately, this is a hairstyle that’s seen little growth in the last couple of years. The last big trend was probably in 2015, and it’s a bored look.

 

The Future

 

Ultimately, the quiff is too versatile to ever die. It can always adapt to the times, and today, that means a return to masculinity, but with a twist. The rugged look is rebounding, but without the toxic components of masculinity that crippled previous approaches. The modern man is supposed to be tough and strong, but he should also be smart and compassionate. A modern quiff reflects this. It’s a style as loosely defined as masculinity itself, and it allows the freedom of expression due to men.

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