With the statistical rigour expected of a survey conducted by a haircare product manufacturer, Fudge has now apparently confirmed that men try five different hair styles before settling on the one they want to keep, at the age of 32. If you think about Rod Stewart, Ozzy Osbourne and Mick Jagger then you may consider that Fudge has a point. Think Elton John, David Beckham and Boris Johnson and it sounds like … Elton had his thatch replanted in the 80s, Beckham has five different hairstyles a yearand Boris has had the same one since he was born.
I also suspect that Fudge may be being rather loose in its interpretation of the word style. Was my schoolboy hair a style? Hardly. It just sort of grew and was then cut. Occasionally it was brushed and at times a parting might appear for an hour or so. Once or twice I stood in front of a mirror wondering if I could make it more like Ziggy Stardust-era Bowiebefore recognising the hopelessness of the situation. The only real aspirations I had for my hair were that it should be as long as possible; which, given the attentions of my school and parents, turned out to be not very.
Come the age of 18 in 1974, I did grow my hair long. This, I suppose, was a style of sorts. Albeit one that required me to do absolutely nothing at all to it. I saw it as more of a statement that my hair was now mine and that I rather hoped to be identified as a sensitive middle-class hippy. Which turned out to be not quite so fun as I imagined as I got rather more attention from the police than women. So I then cut it short to make me look a bit like a punk. Another cut that required no maintenance. Apart from once dyeing it blue for a couple of weeks.
And that was about it really. Since then, my hair has pretty much stayed the same. Sometimes a bit shorter, sometimes a bit longer. It’s not a lack of vanity: more a sense of complacency. Or perhaps surrender. My main objective over the past 20 years has been to mitigate the creep of hair loss; having large tufts sprouting from the sides of your head while the top is almost bare is never a good look. All of which suggests that I have had four hairstyles in my life so far – if you can call them hairstyles; a more accurate description might be a hair-shape. Perhaps number five will be when it all falls out.