The Mad Men Guide to a Manly Haircut

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AMC’s Mad Men is one of television’s most popular shows right now. Yeah, the story is good, but the attention to retro detail and the classic style of Don Draper and crew is at least an equal attraction. Well-tailored grey suits, pocket squares, and skinny ties makes the men on the show look cool, sophisticated, and manly.

But that classic and masculine look would be ruined if Don Draper sported a dopey looking haircut. Do you think advertising clients and women would take Don Draper seriously if he combed his hair forward and spiked it up front like many young men do these days? I don’t think so.

Don Draper and the other men at Sterling Cooper have haircuts that demand that you take them seriously. Your grandpa probably did his hair the same way: tight on the sides with a sharp part on the left side of the head. And of course, the hair needs that healthy looking shine.

Unfortunately, many men today walk around with the same boyish haircuts they’ve had since high school. Sure, your hair spiked in the front or tussled carelessly looked cool when you were 17, but it looks goofy when you’re 30. You want a haircut that looks manly, not juvenile.

To help upgrade your hairstyle to something more respectable, we provide the following tips from the Emmy Award-winning hairstylist of Mad Men, Gloria Ponce.

How to Get the Mad Man Hairstyles

The hair product. If you really want to recapture that slicked back, clean look of the 40s, 50s, and 60s, get your hands on some Brylcreem. The stuff is a little greasy, but boy it really makes a man’s hair look nice. It smells pretty damn manly, too. I’ve used Brylcreem to style my hair for awhile now. My wife loves the way it makes my hair look, and I get compliments on it all the time.

If gramp’s hair products are too greasy for your taste, but you still want that shiny, put together look, try the modern products used by the Mad Men hairstylist. Gloria Ponce uses American Crew hair products on the Mad Men set. Her go to product for all the male actors is American Crew Pomade. The pomade gives you the same hold and shine as Brylcreem, but it isn’t as greasy. She’ll also use American Crew Firm Hold Styling Gel when the hair really needs to stay in place. Unlike other gels, this gel doesn’t flake and leave you looking like you have a bad case of dandruff. Plus it gives you that nice Mad Men shine without making your hair as hard as a helmet.

It comes down to a matter of preference on whether you go the Brylcreem or the American Crew route. They’ll both give you the same look. Personally, I like my Brylcreem. If it was good enough for granddad, it’s good enough for me. Plus, it’s cheaper and you can get it at your local drugstore.

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