Why gender-bending hairstyles are good for feminism

You’re probably still swooning over Cary Fukunaga’s incredible face and, by extension, his man braid. It seems that Hollywood men are starting to buck traditionally short and tidy hair and instead opting for longer locks with ombre and even man buns. And if you’re like the rest of humanity, you probably swooned deeply over Chris Pratt braiding an intern’s hair (and wished your internship was even close to that cool).

I love it. Similar to the strict ideas of what makes women beautiful and feminine, men have a rigid form for what masculinity should be. Flip through a hairstylist’s book for “men’s haircuts” and it’s pretty limited — a little shorter on the sides, rarely the benefit of highlights or color and movement beyond this becomes a point of discussion. For women, we’ve got highlights and lowlights, bobs, A-lines, layers, razoring, texturizing — you get the point. Men have little room for personal hair expression, particularly straight men.

If we open up the doors for men to play with their hairstyles without it being immediately feminized or niche, it’s one more step toward balancing the scales for self-expression between men and women. I think we’re mostly over saying that women with pixie cuts look like dudes — we should also let men have Katniss braids without saying they look like girls.

Not to mention, think of how many more friends you’ll have who can help you get ready in the morning or for a night out.

As with most things in feminism, allowing for these things benefits both genders. Some hair trends I hope men start adopting (mostly for my own personal gain):

  • Curling
  • Braiding
  • Straightening
  • Blow outs (or even blow drying, which I can’t even master)
  • The perfect top knot
  • Whatever this hairstyle is

Please & thank you!

More articles on hair trends

Slicked back hair has a moment
What to know about dyeing your hair violet
Rita Ora’s throwback glitter gel hairstyle


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