The mane attraction
The image-conscious youth in the city are ready to shell out a few hundred rupees for that chic look
THE LONG AND SHORT OF IT: Ponytails - A style for all seasons
WHEN STYLE gazers saw the youth in the city sporting long hair, they thought it was just a passing fad and that it would be all over with a snip! But the ponytail has started showing up in new and popular variations - curly, straight, frizzy, shaggy and spiky. Ponytails are now a style for all seasons.
What's more, the image-conscious youngsters in the city have begun to gel and colour their mane in the trendiest of styles. For, looking good is what matters the most to them. And they are ready to shell out money to the tune of even a few thousands for that chic look.
There is a growing awareness about grooming, say hairstylists in the city.
Today, beauty salons for men raking in the moolah. Styles such as spike, mushroom, veg cut, short cut, straight cut, crew cut, long cut are in fashion.
As a rule, it is the film actors who set the trends in hairstyles. After Aamir Khan's hairstyle in the Bollywood hit, `Dil Chahta Hai', it is the freaky style sported by Zayed Khan in `Main Hoon Na' that is causing ripples in the fashion world. The crew cut, popularised by Hrithik Roshan in `Lakshya', is a much-sought-after style. It is not just Bollywood actors who inspire the youth to try out new hairstyles. Malayalam actors such as Mammootty too has inspired many a youngster with his hairstyle in the film, `Chronic Bachelor', says Sukumaran of Brut, men's beauty salon at Mascot Hotel.
Another film that popularised the spike cut among teenagers was the Tamil film, `Boys'. Hair at the back of the head and sides are cut short, while hair falling onto the forehead is left untouched in spike cut. Fun spikes are also in vogue; the front portion of the hair is snipped off to leave it thinner. This hairstyle is all about looking `cool'.
The veg cut is a take-off on the popular mushroom cut. Either an even length is maintained on all sides or the hair is cut short. Unlike the mushroom cut, it is difficult to make out a veg cut from a distance.
Praveen, an undergraduate, prefers to sport a veg cut for he feels it is "both classic and fashionable".
These days, film stars face tough competition from VJs such as Shayan Munshi and Craig who sport trendy hair-dos.
Men sporting long hair sure grab your attention. Though many youngsters prefer to sport long hair, like Tom Cruise in `Mission Impossible-2', in campuses there are few takers for this style.
Even those with long hair keep track of the latest trends. Film personalities such as Farhan Akhtar and Ashmit Patel are seen with their hair pulled back with colourful bands and scarves.
"This is a common hairstyle among artists," says Sheeyas, who works as an animator.
Versatility of the cut
Choosing a hairstyle to suit one's personality and shape of the face is not an easy task as the guys are beginning to realise. Here's where the style gurus of leading salons come in. For, what is important is the versatility of the cut and the styling.
Manoj, consultant at Shringaram, men's salon at Hotel South Park, says: "The shape of the face and texture of the hair are important while choosing a hairstyle. Since the hairstyle may alter the appearance of an individual, one should be careful while going in for a make-over."
While Midhun Mohan, student of law, has chosen a slope cut because he feels the style suits his face, his friend, Prasanth, has opted for a spike cut.
Some of the youngsters in the city have availed themselves of the computerised hairstyle selection facility from salons in Bangalore.
"But it is not quite practical. The texture of the hair cannot be given adequate importance," says Manoj.
Colouring and streaking are gradually catching everyone's fancy, says Jyothi Das of Leo Beauty Parlour at Spencer Junction. The clientele includes the middle-aged who want to dye their greying hair.
"Black colour has given way to dark brown hair dyes as far as the men in their forties and fifties are concerned," says Manoj.
Teenagers go in for funky shades such as white, blonde, burgundy and rich copper.
Arjun, college student and part-time model, recently spent Rs. 250 to dye his hair a shade of red.
Das, who has over 20 years of experience in hair styling, says the emphasis is on healthy hair. Styles are secondary.
Excessive use of chemicals on the hair, by way of gels or chemicals, may damage the hair, he cautions.
It is not just for a trim that the youth visit a salon. Styling centres also offer complete hair care treatment that includes oil treatment, massage, henna and herbal packs.
It is not just the hairstyles that have the youth flocking to salons. Beauty treatments such as massage, facial, pedicure and manicure are also popular among the youth. Who says looks do not matter?
M. S. VIDYANANDAN
Photo: S. Mahinsha
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