The 1950s, a pivotal era in modern history, was a time of significant cultural, social, and political change.
This transformative period saw the rise of consumerism, rock and roll, and the birth of the civil rights movement.
It also extended to fashion and GROOMING, with a particular emphasis on men’s hairstyles.
The 1950s proved to be a rich tapestry of iconic looks, with men’s hairstyles playing a crucial role in defining the style and identity of the time.
It was an iconic decade in many ways, and men’s hairstyles were no exception.
During this time, a diverse range of styles emerged, influenced by factors such as rock ‘n’ roll, HOLLYWOOD, and the military.
In this article, I will dive deep into the world of 1950s men’s hairstyles, exploring the popular and timeless looks that defined the decade.
28 Top 1950s Men’s Hairstyles
Faux Hawk 50s Style
Faux Hawk 50s Style is a modern twist on the CLASSIC 1950s men’s hairstyles, combining the edginess of a mohawk with the sleekness of the era’s popular styles.
This look features short sides and a longer, textured top that is styled upwards.
To create the Faux Hawk 50s Style, I would start with towel-dried hair and apply a volumizing mousse or texturizing spray, then blow-dry the hair upwards to create height.
Finish by using a pomade or hair wax to shape the faux hawk and hold it in place.
Messy 50s Look
Messy 50s Look is a modern interpretation of the classic 1950s men’s hairstyles, featuring a more relaxed and tousled appearance.
This style is perfect for men who prefer a laid-back, effortless vibe.
To create the Messy 50s Look, I would start with towel-dried hair and apply a texturizing product, then use my fingers to roughly shape the hair, allowing for natural movement and texture.
Classic Pompadour is another iconic 1950s men’s hairstyle that exudes confidence and charm. This style features a voluminous front that gradually tapers towards the back.
To achieve the Classic Pompadour, I would start with towel-dried hair, apply a heat protectant, and blow-dry the hair upwards to create volume.
Finish by using a pomade or hair wax to shape the pompadour and hold it in place throughout the day.
Ducktail Haircut, also known as the Duck’s Ass or D.A., is a distinctive hairstyle from the 1950s that involves combing the hair towards the center of the back, creating a shape that resembles a duck’s tail.
This style is perfect for men who want to make a bold statement with their hair.
To create the Ducktail Haircut, I would grow the hair to a medium length and use a strong hold pomade or hair gel to style the hair into the signature shape.
Crew Cut is a timeless and low-maintenance hairstyle that was popular among men in the 1950s.
It features short, even-length hair on the top and slightly shorter sides and back. This style is ideal for gentlemen who prefer a clean-cut and fuss-free appearance.
To get a Crew Cut, I would visit a barber and ask for a short, even trim on the top, with tapered sides and back.
Side Part is a versatile and classic 1950s men’s hairstyle that can be easily adapted to suit various hair types and face shapes.
This style involves parting the hair on one side and combing it over to the opposite side.
Achieved with damp hair, then create a neat part using a comb, and then use a pomade or hair gel to hold the hair in place.
Short Back and Sides
Short Back and Sides is a straightforward and practical hairstyle that was popular among men in the 1950s.
Featuring a neatly trimmed back and sides, with a slightly longer top. It’s perfect for men who want a low-maintenance and fuss-free look.
You can achieve this style by asking your barber for a short, tapered cut on the sides and back, with a slightly longer top that can be styled as desired.
The Elephant’s Trunk
Elephant’s Trunk is a unique and eye-catching hairstyle from the 1950s that features a long, curled fringe that resembles an elephant’s trunk.
This style is ideal for men with medium to long hair and a desire to stand out from the crowd.
To create the Elephant’s Trunk, I would start with damp hair, apply a styling product, and use a round brush and hairdryer to shape the fringe into the signature curl.
The rest of the hair can be styled as desired, such as slicked back or combed to one side.
Flat Top is a bold and structured 1950s men’s hairstyle that features a perfectly level top with short, tapered sides.
An ideal style for gentlemen who prefer a clean-cut, military-inspired look.
A skilled barber can get this style by expertly trimming the top of the hair to create the desired flat surface, while keeping the sides and back short and neatly tapered.
Textured Quiff is a versatile and stylish option that adds a modern touch to the classic 1950s men’s hairstyles.
This style features a longer, textured top with shorter sides, giving it a contemporary feel.
To achieve the Textured Quiff, I would start with clean, damp hair and apply a texturizing product, then use a hairdryer and brush to create volume and lift at the roots.
Finish by using a light hold pomade or hair wax to define the texture and hold the quiff in place.
D.A. (Duck’s Arse) Hairstyle
D.A. (Duck’s Arse) Hairstyle is an alternative name for the Ducktail Haircut mentioned earlier.
This striking and distinctive hairstyle was popular among men in the 1950s, known for its unique shape that resembles a duck’s behind.
It requires growing your hair to a medium length and using a strong hold pomade or hair gel to style it into the signature shape, combing the hair towards the center of the back.
Greaser Hairstyle is a popular 1950s men’s hairstyle that is characterized by its shiny, slick appearance.
Inspired by the likes of James Dean and Marlon Brando, this look is perfect for men who want to channel their inner rebel.
To achieve the Greaser Hairstyle, I would start with damp hair and apply a generous amount of pomade or hair gel, then use a comb to create a sleek, smooth finish.
Can be styled in various ways, such as slicked back or with a side part.
Hollywood Fade is a stylish and sophisticated 1950s men’s hairstyle that features a gradual fade from the bottom to the top, creating a seamless transition between the different hair lengths.
Perfect for guys who want a clean, polished look that’s suitable for any occasion.
The top can be styled as desired, such as slicked back or with a side part.
Tapered Haircut is a timeless and versatile 1950s men’s hairstyle that gradually decreases in length from the top to the bottom, creating a clean and polished appearance.
Works well for various hair types and is suitable for both casual and formal settings.
To achieve the Tapered Haircut, I would visit a skilled barber who can expertly trim and blend the hair for a seamless transition between the different lengths.
Brushed Up Hair
Brushed Up Hair is a stylish 1950s men’s hairstyle that features a voluminous and lifted appearance.
This style is ideal for men who want to add height and dimension to their look.
Start with damp hair and apply a volumizing mousse or hair gel, then use a brush and hairdryer to lift the hair upwards and create the desired height.
Finish by using a light hold pomade or hair wax to hold the style in place.
Wavy Pompadour is a unique variation of the classic Pompadour that showcases natural waves and adds texture to the style.
This hairstyle is perfect for men with wavy hair who want to embrace their natural texture.
To create the Wavy Pompadour, I would start with clean, damp hair and apply a curl-enhancing product, then use a diffuser attachment on the HAIRDRYER to enhance the waves.
You can finish by shaping the pompadour with a light hold pomade or hair wax.
Short Curls hairstyle is an excellent option for men with naturally CURLY hair who prefer a shorter, low-maintenance style.
This 1950s-inspired look showcases the curls while keeping the overall APPEARANCE neat and tidy.
Ask your barber for a short, evenly trimmed haircut, then use a curl-defining product, such as a MOUSSE or hair cream, to enhance and control the curls.
Gentleman’s Cut is a sophisticated and classic 1950s men’s hairstyle that features a neat, polished appearance.
Perfect for men who prefer a refined and elegant look. To achieve the Gentleman’s Cut, I would ask my barber for a short, evenly trimmed haircut with a subtle side part.
A light hold pomade or hair gel can help maintain the style throughout the day.
The Contour is a stylish 1950s men’s hairstyle characterized by its smooth, flowing lines and sculpted appearance.
It works well for men with straight or wavy hair and can be easily adapted to suit various face shapes.
To create the Contour, I would start with clean, damp hair and apply a pomade or hair gel, then use a comb to create the desired shape, emphasizing the natural contours of the head.
The G.I. Cut
Ideal for guys who prefer a low-maintenance, fuss-free appearance. To achieve the G.I. Cut, I would visit a skilled barber who can expertly trim the hair to a short, even length all around.
Simplicity of the G.I. Cut makes it easy to maintain and perfect for guys with busy lifestyles or who simply prefer a clean-cut look.
The Hollywood Top
Hollywood Top is a glamorous and sophisticated 1950s men’s hairstyle that was popular among movie stars of the era.
Featuring a longer, slicked-back top with short, neatly trimmed sides.
You need to grow the hair on the top of the head to a medium length, while keeping the sides short and well-groomed to achieve this style.
A strong hold pomade or hair gel can be used to slick the hair back, creating a polished and refined appearance.
Teddy Boy Hairstyle
Teddy Boy Hairstyle is a rebellious and eye-catching 1950s men’s hairstyle that was popular among the British YOUTH subculture known as the Teddy Boys.
Featuring a voluminous quiff or pompadour, with the sides slicked back or cut short.
A strong hold pomade or hair wax can be used to maintain the STYLE and hold it in place throughout the day.
The 1950s marked a significant period in the history of men’s hairstyles, reflecting the cultural, social, and ECONOMIC changes of the era.
As we have explored, this decade witnessed an incredible variety of styles such as the pompadour, flattop, crew cut, and ducktail, each embodying different aspects of the 1950s man.
The influence of Hollywood celebrities, musicians, and even political figures played a crucial role in shaping and popularizing these hairstyles.
What men’s hairstyles were popular in the 1950s?
In the 1950s, men’s hairstyles were diverse and often reflected one’s personality or status.
Some popular 1950s men’s hairstyles included the pompadour, the ducktail, and the crew cut.
The pompadour featured voluminous hair on top, slicked back with a slight upward curl at the front, while the ducktail was a variation where hair was combed back to meet in the middle, resembling a duck’s tail.
Crew cut, on the other hand, was a short, military-inspired style that became popular during this time.
How did the cultural changes of the 1950s influence men’s hairstyles?
The 1950s was a decade marked by significant cultural shifts, including the rise of rock ‘n’ roll music, the Beat Generation, and the emergence of youth culture.
These changes significantly influenced 1950s men’s hairstyles, as young men sought to express their individuality and rebelliousness through their hair.
New styles, like the pompadour and the quiff, became popular as they were seen as symbols of nonconformity and defiance against traditional norms.
How were men’s hairstyles in the 1950s influenced by Hollywood icons and musicians?
During the 1950s, Hollywood icons and musicians had a significant impact on men’s hairstyles.
Stars like Elvis Presley, James Dean, and Marlon Brando popularized styles like the pompadour, the quiff, and the side-parted slicked back look.
These hairstyles were seen as cool, rebellious, and desirable by many young men, leading to their widespread adoption.
The influence of these celebrities helped shape the decade’s overall trends and solidified the importance of personal style in the 1950s.
What are 1950s hairstyles?
1950s hairstyles refer to the distinctive hair trends and styles that were popular during the 1950s.
For men, this decade was characterized by a variety of hairstyles, from the voluminous pompadour to the classic crew cut.
Other notable styles included the ducktail, the flat top, and the Ivy League cut. These hairstyles often required the use of hair products like pomade, which helped to create the desired shape and hold.
Many 1950s men’s hairstyles continue to influence modern fashion trends and are still worn by people today.
How do I style my hair like the 1950s?
To style your hair like the 1950s, first determine which hairstyle you’d like to recreate. For a pompadour or a quiff, start by applying a generous amount of pomade or hair gel to damp hair.
Using a comb, work the product through your hair, focusing on the front and top sections.
Next, comb your hair up and back, creating volume at the front. For a ducktail, comb the sides of your hair back and toward the center, creating a “V” shape at the back of your head.
If you prefer a crew cut or flat top, consider visiting a professional barber to achieve the desired look.
The 1950s (pronounced nineteen-fifties; commonly abbreviated as the “Fifties” or the “’50s”) (among other variants) was a decade that began on January 1, 1950, and ended on December 31, 1959. source
Khamis Maiouf is a professional barber who graduated from Hinckley College in England with a degree in hairdressing. He has also won several barbering contests and successfully operated a barbershop for the last two decades. As a skilled hair stylist for 20 years, his goal is to teach others how to achieve a beautiful appearance through their hairstyles.