Mullet mania: Just a fad or here to stay?
Michael Galley answers some of those all important questions surrounding the resurgence of the mullet
Ah, the mullet… Once the confine of rock stars, lesbians and American ice hockey players, this unorthodox hairstyle is now as ubiquitous in Exeter as a Ralphy quarter zip, Pret subscription or the name Poppy. Just as no self-respecting Holland girl would go to Fever without her flares, no rugby boy worth his salt would be seen without luscious locks emanating from the back of his head. Re-popularized by All-Black Jack Goodhue, former zoo owner turned sex-icon Joe Exotic, and #privateschooltiktok, the mullet entails business at the front, and party at the back. In preparing this article, I had the pleasure of speaking to logic rep and all-round loose bloke, Oliver Lythe, who insists that his mullet has not only helped him secure the social secretaryship of the Golf club, but due to the streamlined natured of the cut, has improved his VK bolt.
Although commonly associated with male bravado, the mullet is a versatile, low-maintenance hairstyle also favoured by many avant-garde women, including Miley Cyrus, Rihanna and Cara Delevinge, as it frames and elongates one’s face. However, whilst there are undoubtedly many aesthetic motivations that might contribute to someone asking their hairdresser for a mullet, such a decision often has interesting quasi-political and psychosocial factors behind it.
For men in particular who don’t wish to conform to the societal norm of ‘short back and sides’, the mullet is often seen as an outlet to express their ‘individuality’ and a form of rebellion against the corporate image of Russell Group University students. Yet, as humans, we are wired to ‘mirror’ others (particularly those with whom we associate, or wish to associate), which explains the proliferation of the mullet within certain groups, as members consciously and sub-consciously imitate each other, even to the extent of copying hairstyles.
The revival of the mullet was inspired by its bohemian image, alas having now become lockdown and post-lockdown 2020’s most popular accessory, one fears it may have lost its charm. With this in mind, unless you hopped on the mullet ‘train’ before it left the station at the beginning of lockdown, and frankly even if you did, sporting a mullet in order to convey to the world (and especially Annabel or Allegra or Arabella in the Fever smoking area) your joie de vivre has unfortunately become something of a futile cause, and you may in fact find it easier to convey your allegiance to the EURFC by repping your preferred stash in Puregym.