Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Mullets making a comeback in Kansas City

Image hosting by Photobucket

"'It never quite goes and it comes back again,' said Mark Larson, co-author of The Mullet: Hairstyle of the Gods. 'It's kind of like what they say about the evolution of roaches. They've been here since the dinosaurs, and they just keep adapting. The mullet adapts.'

"So the style has mutated from the traditional mullet of short hair in front, cropped above the ears, and long hair in back, cascading over the shoulders. This time around we're dealing with a different breed: the shag mullet. Most popular with young men, the bangs hang just below the eyebrows, while the back creeps down to the shoulders.

"As with most trends, we have celebrities to thank. This summer former 'N Sync member JC Chasez and Maroon 5 guitarist James Valentine wore mullets at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater. Actor John Hensley of TV's 'Nip/Tuck' and Everclear frontman Art Alexakis are now doing the same.

"It could almost be passed off as shaggy hair. Almost.

"Jake Nelson of Kansas City loves his shag mullet, which he has had for about six months now.

"'It's a way to say kinda '(expletive befitting a mullet-wearing rebel) you' to the man,'' Nelson said.

"He's one half of a tag-team family mullet — his 11-year-old son, Brenden, also rocks the shag.

"'I'm really proud of my son's mullet,' Nelson said. 'I want him to grow it into a rat-tail mullet down his back.'

"While Nelson wears his hair with pride, plenty of young men are in denial, [Dana] Yates [who has been styling hair for 12 years] said. They see the shag on television and ask for hair like Ashton Kutcher of 'That '70s Show' or Brad Pitt's from the movie 'Spy Game.' They think it's just shaggy hair, but what they're really getting is the shag mullet.

"But the mullet may soon be trendy for women as well. Already models in Paris and people in New York and Los Angeles are sporting cropped bangs with a waterfall in the back, said Joyce Sander, a hairstylist in Leawood.

"The Midwest mullet for women — if it hits — might not surface until next year, Sander said, given the speed of other hair trends, but once here, hairstyles usually stay for three to four years.

"The modern mullet probably came from David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust phase in the early '70s. Kutcher may be responsible for bringing on the shag mullet, but there is no one man fully credited with sparking the resurgence."