HOW LONG SHOULD YOU GO BETWEEN HAIRCUTS?
Life is full of little rules. Some, like “never wear white shoes after Labor Day,” are based in nothing but snobbery. Some rules like “never show up as a guest empty-handed,” are just plain polite. Others, like “choose to stand in the full subway car over sitting in the one with a lone passed-out homeless guy in it,” just make practical sense.
But is there a single rule about how long you should wait in-between haircuts? Like anything style or grooming-related, that answer is both “yes” and “no.”
“The typical target range is between three to six weeks,” says Artisan Barber founder Charlie McCoy.
Three to six weeks? That doesn’t seem like much of a rule considering one end of the range literally doubles the other. By that reasoning, a rule for the best time to go to bed would be sometime between noon and midnight. But there is logic to this rule.
THE RULES OF RATIO
“A lot of this depends on the type of style you’re trying to maintain,” Charlie says. “Guys who weeks will disrupt his look. For guys with buzzcuts, two weeks will kill the look. For a guy who has longer hair, 0.5 or even 0.75 inches of growth will barely be noticeable.”
“The reason why,” Charlies says. “As your hair grows, the ends will split. So, if you don’t get regular trims your hair will grow out damaged. You want it to grow out full and voluminous.”
THE COST ALL COMES OUT IN THE WASH
Question: By Charlie’s rules, due to more frequent trips to the barber, do guys with short hair end up paying more?
Not really. More hair requires more maintenance. “The seasons affect long hair a lot.” Charlie says. “In the winter, it’s the cold. In the summer, it’s the sun, which can do a lot of damage to have shorter hair on the sides who are trying to maintain a more ‘closer sides/longer top’ look, fall on the low-end (every two-to-three weeks) range of that rule. Guys who have longer hair, or are trying to grow their hair out, fall in the four-to-six-week range.”
According to Charlie, the science behind this rule comes down to ratio.
“Hair grows at an average of 0.5 inches per month. For a shorthaired guy, more than three your hair.” Logically, the more hair you have, the more product you’ll need – especially conditioner, which is key for longer-haired guys. “Artisan Barber carries a line of control products with UV screen in that’s great for all hair types,” Charlie says.