Fashion

Knot as you like it

Manbuns are the most practical way to wear long hair, especially if you live in a tropical country. Photo: R. Ravindran   | Photo Credit: R_RAVINDRAN;R_RAVINDRAN - Ravindran

For eight years now, Troydon Netto has had hair so long that it cascades down his shoulders. Every other day, he spends close to an hour taking care of it – shampooing, conditioning, masking and drying, followed by blow-drying to iron out the curls, oiling with baby oil to moisturise the roots, and finally, applying hair serum to give his locks life and volume. Then, after all that effort, he ties it up in a quick, comfortable and effortlessly snazzy knot.

Compliments are common — from friends to strangers, everyone has something to say about his knot. “I used to wear the man bun before it became a trend. Initially, it was a practical way to tie up my hair, even though people used to make fun of me, because it was rare to come across men with long hair. Later, though, the compliments began to trickle in,” grins Troydon. Decidedly, a man who pours such love into his hair deserves applause, and one who is in tune with fashion while doing so, deserves even more.

“It’s a major trend currently. Men have become rather crazy about it,” says Nandhini Raju, brand trainer, Limelite Salon & Spa, India. She adds, “Beckham started wearing it in early 2000, and now, many celebrities are following suit.” Leonardo DiCaprio, Bradley Cooper, Jake Gyllenhaal, Orlando Bloom, Kit Harington, Chris Hemsworth and Brad Pitt; some of the most sought-after men from Hollywood have been knotting up their hair, and looking much hotter.

Even in our city, an increasing number of men are trying out this look. Nandhini says that she has customers ranging from college students to celebrities, who come in to style their man buns. It is, after all, the most practical way to wear long hair, especially if you live in a tropical country. City-based fashion choreographer Karun Raman, who likes to experiment with his hair, has sported styles that have grabbed eyeballs, including the palm-tree hairstyle, the mohawk, spikes and side partitions. For him, being fashionable is fun, and now, he’s doing so with a bun. “This is one look that makes you look hot and cool at the same time,” says Karun.

It is also a versatile look that can be worked in many ways. While Karun says that a man bun can be worn as a top knot, side knot or back knot, Nandhini says that the bun itself can be worn as a complete or as a semi one. “The knot can be anywhere between the crown to the nape of the neck. The hair can be completely folded inside, or it can even be worn as a pony bun,” explains Nandhini. Pair it with jeans and a T-shirt for a casual and comfortable look, or tie it up tight and wear it with a suit to bring out your stylish professional avatar. “T-shirts and jeans, man jumpsuits, ganjees, V-neck T-shirts and jacket, formals… any outfit works well with the man bun,” says Karun.

Buns, matched with the right moustache and beard, accentuate the masculinity of the look. Full-face beards and stubbles seem to be the most popular option, with very few opting to pair it with a clean-shaven look.

The look can be accessorised with thick, colourful rubber bands to tie up the bun, hair bands to push back the hair, flexible hair rings to hold it up and colourful clips to keep it in place.

Taking care of your long hair, which reaches past your ears, is usually the biggest challenge when it comes to carrying the man bun look. It’s not just time and effort you need, but also a lot of patience to go with it. “Wash your hair every day to keep it clean. But avoid conditioner, because it makes it frizzy. Mousse it and blow-dry, for volume. Use a good hair spray to avoid frizz. But once all that is done and it’s set, it’s very stylish,” says Karun.

Despite the look being all the rage, it’s only a niche set of men who opt for it. Michelle, senior stylist, Studio Profile Unisex Salon & Spa, says, “Some men like to go funky and add colour to their look. Most others, because of professional reasons, opt for only something subtle, even if they are looking for a change.” She says she has five to six men sporting man buns coming to her salon in Nungambakkam every month, and usually, they are all from a creative background. “You need to get past the criticism – you’re gonna deal with a lot of people who don’t understand fashion. Once you are comfortable with yourself though, you’ll know that this is a style that looks good and works practically too,” says Troydon. Karun agrees, “Not everyone likes to experiment, and I think it takes a lot of confidence for a man to carry off a bun.”


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Printable version | Oct 15, 2021 2:37:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/fashion/manbun-trend-in-chennai/article7485479.ece

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