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The Evolution of Barbering Styles Through the Decades

The culture of barbering can be traced back through the ages. Barbering trends history shows significant changes over the centuries - from classic barbershops to modern grooming salons. Our culture, society and various other factors significantly shape our hairstyles. Let's find out more about barbering trends history and men's hairstyles evolution. 

Ancient History of Barbering

The barbering we see today in modern barbershops wasn't invented in the modern era. The barbering profession is deeply rooted in history- thousands of years back. Barbers were considered prestigious in ancient Egyptian society. During that time, barbers learned hair cutting, shaving, and dentistry skills. Archaeologists discovered razors and other barbering tools in Egyptian tombs, which shows that grooming and barbering were prominent parts of Egyptian culture.

Barbering gained more popularity during the Roman Empire. The first barbershops are known in their history. Such establishments offered hair cutting, shaving, and medical bloodletting services. 

In medieval Europe, barbers did more than groom. In addition to their usual grooming services, they started performing surgical procedures such as tooth extractions and bloodletting. 

The Golden Age of Barbering Trends


The emergence of Jazz characters with slicked-back hair influenced men's hairstyles back in 1920. It was believed to be the era of entering the modern age. During that time, the hairstyle called 'Undercut' was widely popular. Men would shave or closely crop the back and side of the head while keeping the top hair longer, slicking it back. 

1930 was the time of The Great Depression. However, even in difficult times, men wished to look polished. The 'Side Parting' hairstyle, which was more straightforward and less fancy, was popular then but still looked sleek. 

Looking at the hairstyles of 1940, you'll see the influence of military-inspired cuts. World War II influenced barbering styles; some popular haircuts were short sides, long tops, and styled waves. 

The Rock' n' Roll Era

In the 50s, many classic barber styles that looked elegant and sophisticated were on the rise. People were heavily influenced by celebrities like James Dean and Elvis Presley, who popularized slicked-back hair and perfectly styled pompadours. 

People in business preferred a side-part cut and a wave styled with hair gel. However, young men and performers chose to rock big, bouffant hair, boasting their personalities. 

However, the era of 1960 was different - a time of rebellion and individuality. This dramatic social shift changed the traditional grooming standards. The "mop-top" haircut style, where men would style with longer and shaggy hair, got the traction. 

The Rise of Bold Styles

Music strongly influenced people's lifestyles in 1970. People were inclined towards natural textures, popularizing afros, curls, and locks representing freedom and self-expression. 

Around 1980, people started to get haircuts more often. The '80s gave us various styles, like mullets and punk-inspired cuts. However, most ordinary men preferred simple and short hair, while the rock stars embraced long and bold haircuts. 

The Minimalist Approach

In 1990, modern barbering looks started to gain traction. The hairstyles went more effortlessly cool from glamorous. Musicians like Kurt Cobain even made "bedhead" a trend. Flat Top was also a hit style among the black community as a cultural statement. Simpler and casual– the 90's barbering style was about a minimalist approach. 

As soon as the world entered the new millennium, globalization brought many unique styles. We've seen retro-inspired haircuts, contemporary styles, messy spikes, and layered styles. This is when men started to include grooming as a crucial part of their lives - experimenting with various hairstyles. 

The Era of Versatility

From classic barber styles to modern barbering looks, men's hairstyles evolution has come a long way. After 2010, versatile haircuts emerged to showcase individuality and self-expression. 

In the modern world, men can choose from various hairstyles. They can choose a cut that matches their personality, preference, or facial structure. Many haircuts, such as man buns, undercuts, fades, and textured crops, are trending. 

How To Become A Licensed Barber

Join Hollywood Institute, which offers professional barber training from dedicated instructors. We help you become a licensed barber with 900 hours of school and on-campus barbershop live training. If barbering is your dream profession, do not hesitate to contact us to become a licensed barber in a year.


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