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Let’s Cancel Men’s Haircuts

If you're 37 or older, it's time to get real: No one thinks you're cool because of your hair. So, let's stop caring, shall we?

fatherly logo Opinion

When I turned 38, I realized three things were true. First, I can no longer knock-back three beers and bounce back in the morning. Second, I can’t pretend to like Coldplay ironically. I just actually like Coldplay. And finally, I don’t want to think about my haircut ever again. In fact, I would advocate when you hit the age of 37 or 38, you should officially give up trying to have a hairstyle.

Now, I’m not saying you should shave your head if you’re not bald, but I am saying you may just want to select whatever number clipper you think you want on that razor and just stick to it. For life. We’re talking about picking a solid buzz cut for yourself and just moving on.

If you’re over a certain age, spending money on men’s haircuts is a scam. Do you know how long an expensive haircut looks good for? Maybe two days. Let’s face it. If you spent more than $30 on your last haircut, and you’re over the age of 37, you’re paying too much. Oddly, if you are like 34, I think it’s fine if you want to blow 80 bucks on a haircut. But, something happens in your early-late-thirties that will make you feel like a giant asshole for thinking its a good idea to spend more than even $20 on a haircut.

I remember being 33 and visiting Portland, Oregon and sitting in a cool barbershop where they gave me a beer and charged me like $50 for the privilege of looking at everyone’s cool tattoos while they snipped away. Now, five years later, a homeowner in the other Portland — Portland, Maine — I’m the father of a rock and roll toddler, and the idea of having a beer while I pay that much for a hipster to cut my hair seems like something a guy would do because he a read an article about “self-care” that told him to go ahead and “pamper himself.” Fifty bucks is a lot of money! Do you know how much grocery store wine I buy with that?

Furthermore, expensive haircuts are time-consuming. If you’re a dad pushing 40, free time is like seeing a whale struck by lightning: it’s hard to come by, and when it happens, you don’t really know how to behave. I don’t want to make the whole time-is-money argument, because even when it’s not, it feels like it is. The last time I paid for a haircut it was at SuperCuts and they asked me if I wanted them to trim my beard. I snorted I laughed so hard. Absurd! No!

I mean, it takes me about 30 minutes to trim my beard and not make it look like complete shit, and the best part is, my daughter thinks it’s fucking hilarious. The person cutting my hair had no way of knowing this, and it’s not fair that I made it seem like their offer to trim my beard was hilarious, but to me it was. When I lived in New York City, I remember a lot of guys raving about getting the whole thing where you get your beard shaved and hot towels shoved on you and all that. Every single time I had this done, I always wanted to feel like James Bond, but usually ended up feeling more like Tony Soprano if he wasn’t cool and not in the mob. In other words, it felt stupid to have someone shave or trim my beard. Clearly, I should be able to do that.

My daughter will never have to shave her beard (I mean, who knows?) But, I think it’s good she sees me doing something as simple as grooming myself. Which is why, I’ve started cutting my own hair, too. And I think other dudes 38 and older should join me. Let’s all buy a nice set of hair clippers and stop thinking about this. If you’ve got a kind of egg-shaped head, let’s just all decide to get the same haircut, and move on, right? I’m talking Ewan McGregor in 1995 motherfucking Trainspotting and just call it a day. (Or, you know, Chris Martin from Coldplay in 2002.)

At least 70 percent of men — of all kinds of ethnicities!— look good with this haircut. And besides, if you’re getting older, it’s time get honest about one thing: No one thinks you’re a cool guy because of your hair. Saving money and not giving a fuck? Now that’s cool.