Super bowl: how Timothée Chalamet's haircut became the year's most unlikely style hit

From Spock to Jim Carrey, the bowl cut has never quite made it to fashion’s A-list. But that is all about to change

Last month, in her standup special on Netflix, Jenny Slate said that women in Hollywood were pressured to have “the physique of Timothée Chalamet”. It was a hilarious, ever-so-brutal line about body politics that also gave a nod to Chalamet’s pop-culture dominance.

A large part of this is due to his own personal style. He regularly reinvents the menswear wheel by pulling off outre high-fashion looks on the red carpet (think of his Louis Vuitton harness, the all-white Berluti Oscars suit and his recent shiny and spacey Haider Ackermann number, featuring an external cummerbund) with adorable effortlessness.

Of course, he has his own tribe of fans (the “Chalamanaics”) who were divided when the trailer for the historical drama The King dropped in June, along with Chalamet’s big hair reveal: a bowl cut.

Those behind the Twitter account Timothée Chalamet’s Hair were enamoured (“I. Am. Dead”) while others mourned the death of his wavy do (very much in the “it might be OK once we get home and run it under the cold tap” mould, unfavourably comparing it with Claire in series two of Fleabag). Indeed, for those of us who associate the “do” with a bedroom, a blunt pair of scissors and a reluctant sibling cutting around a Pyrex dish placed on your head, it may be surprising to hear that some labelled the bowl “the hottest haircut of the summer”.

Chalamet’s was a bit messier than some pop-culture “bowls” of yore (think Spock from Star Trek or Jim Carrey in Dumb and Dumber) but it has started a celebrity trend. Harry Styles, Charlize Theron and Stranger Things’ Joe Keery all got one (Esquire lovingly labelled this “the Rob” after the Smooth hit-maker Rob Thomas). The key to the cut, as the hairstylist Ryo Murakawa told GQ: “Target the hair line above the ears and go as short as you can for the under-cut to get a severe bowl-cut shape, and then texturise the top section with a razor.” So far, so manageable. Less so is the trimming of the do, which needs to be done once or twice a week. Chalamaniacs, it may be time to get the Pyrex dish out.


Priya Elan

The GuardianTramp

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