In the 80s and 90s, it seemed that the hairstyle that ruled the heads of celebrities was also the most ridiculous (in hindsight, at least): the mullet. It was the hairstyle that country stars Blake Shelton, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Toby Keith strutted onto the stage. Mel Gibson famously had one, Patrick Swayze, Chuck Norris, and Jean-Claude Van Damme sported the mullet on-screen and kept people from saying mullets were “girly”.
With most things, they fade away into the past and generally stay there. In the last decade, however, there has been a resurgence of trends, or fads, creeping back into the present. Scrunchies and chokers from the 90s have come back, as well as some bands and television shows. Why not bring back the mullet? This iconic hairstyle has seen a steady revival in the last few years, but it has made a spike with the quarantine in effect.
Hairstylists from all around the country have noticed that people have wanted to shape their hair into mullets. It is a perfect style for Zoom calls, after all. It can have the business in front to please the boss and have the party in the back with the six or fewer friends. Some credit it to Miley Cyrus taking after her father’s “Achy Breaky Heart” earlier during the start of the quarantine, and others point to Zach Efron sporting the mullet in Australia.
What makes the mullet so attractive, though? It comes in varieties! Yes, the mullet that is easily recognizable as Joe Dirt’s wig can be a little shorter in the back, faded, layered, and other ways of wearing it. It is not a singular styled hairstyle but can be packaged in various ways. Due to the lockdown, people staying home were able to let their hair grow to the point they normally would never allow it, giving way to the “quarantine hair” that people seem to talk about with disdain.
Although people have let their hair grow out, this does not mean they should give themselves that 80s heartthrob mullet cut. They do need to see a professional to get it shaped because that is all the mullet is. It is shaped into the mullet by the cut, thus needs no product. There are products out there to use if one would desire, but it is not necessary.
What would be interesting is to see more of the Viking hairstyle come back. This hairstyle is not all about braids and unkempt hair, but it is in essence a mullet…only backward.
Vikings of History
Many are not well-versed in the background and history of who we call “Vikings” today. They were first called “Northmen” because they came from the north. Their homes resided in Scandinavia, the countries of Demark, Sweden, and Norway, which are lovely places but (Norway, for example) can be a very harsh place to live. They came at first to raid to help grow their wealth and purchasing power since the growing season in Norway is very short.
They would then spread out and populate many places, such as England, Northern France (Normandy, after the dilution of Northmen to Norman), and Greenland. Their expansion of settling and trading would bring their customs with them, namely their hair.
A Viking, or Northmen, the hairstyle has been described as a backward mullet: party in the front, business in the back. The image that comes to mind illustrating the style is Ragnar’s character in the show “Vikings,” who almost seems to be wearing a hat of hair and bald everywhere else. Ragnar’s might be an example of the extreme side of the Viking hairstyle, just as Joe Dirt or Joe Exotic can be an example of an extreme mullet.
The Viking hairstyle may be just as popular today as the mullet, perhaps even more so. With the man-buns advent in the last five or so years, the Viking style of hair has been making an uptick, especially among bearded men. The Viking look is even more versatile than the mullet since the head can be shaven and sport a well-manicured beard. Hair can belong with a beard, or there can be an undercut and ponytail, as is the case in Ragnar’s extreme hairstyle.
What also seems to be a large part of the Viking style is the braid, which is prevalent in today’s image of braided beards. It is not just the beards that are braided, but the hair itself can be braided. A braided part can be done in the fashion of Vikings, and some companies sell rings to adorn the braided beard look, but the braided hair also.
Just as with the mullet, this Viking style is not meant only for one gender but for all. Even the Viking women had their type, complete with the braids in their hair. As mentioned previously, the Viking mullet is perhaps more versatile than the modern mullet due to its simplistic nature. The women Vikings can be a braided back look like Lagertha in “Vikings” or a bob cut. Most of the styles involve some braid, so it would be best to keep that in mind if the idea of having to shave a portion of your head seems intimidating.
If the thought of having to braid hair every morning sounds as fun as playing leapfrog with a unicorn, it is possible to sport the braided hairstyle in a Dutch Braid and get away with wearing it for several days before it starts looking bad and needs to be dealt with. Whichever way one chooses to wear their hair, there are various options, each one as unique as the next. If a test-run sounds enticing for any new 2021 hairstyle, click here.