Summer has arrived. Beer gardens and barbecues beckon, and finally the time has come to hang up your woolly hat.

The problem is, what lies beneath is probably long overdue a bit of tonsorial TLC. The cold weather can be cruel to hair, drying it out, starving it of nutrients and leaving you without much motivation to keep your barnet up to date.

To whip things back into shape, a fresh trim is just what the barber ordered. But which styles are trending this year? What should you be asking for? And how can you keep it looking salon-slick from the comfort of your own bathroom?

To answer all of the above and more, we hit up a few of our barbering buddies to find out this year’s key spring and summer hair trends and how to get them for yourself.

Curtains, Redrawn

Proving without a doubt that the 20-year trend clock is still ticking to the nanosecond, one of the nineties’ most notorious haircuts is creeping back onto scalps for SS19.

Believe it or not, curtains are back on trend, but thankfully you don’t have to go full boyband to pull them off. This time around, it’s all about looser, wavy styles. Joe Mills, owner of Joe & Co. in London and the brains behind Mills, Primark’s first ever in-house barbershop, thinks he knows why.

“We’re seeing a shift away from the slicked-back look, and part of this is the emergence of different shapes,” he explains. “[Curtains] is one of the looks that lends itself to this shift, paired with the fact that the likes of Timothée Chalamet have been rocking it and it always looks great.”

What To Ask For

So you don’t end up with the wrong kind of #throwback, Mills suggests taking a picture along for best results. “Think about how much length you want, he adds. “This cut can be worn at different lengths and works well if you have thick hair. Ideally with a wave so it has some movement, too.”

SS19 Hair Trends - Curtains

How To Style It

To style the look at home, Mills recommends applying a pre-styler designed to enhance curls before leaving the hair to air dry. For naturally straight hair, use a hair dryer straight out of the shower and apply sea salt spray for texture.

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French Crop

Most hair crazes come and go like the wind. Others never stopped trending from the moment they were sculpted atop that first lucky individual’s head. If it’s this sort of timeless style you seek, a French crop is just the ticket.

This classic cut is steeped in history, but contemporary updates such as skin fades and undercuts have kept it feeling anything but old-fashioned.

“A French crop is a good option at any time of year because it’s effortless and looks good on most head and hair types,” says Johnny ‘BaBa’ Shanahan, founder of upscale hairdressing chain Barber Barber. “It’s quite a good option for someone who is receding, too, as they can just make the fringe shorter to give the illusion of thickness at the front of the head.”

What To Ask For

According to Shanahan, any barber worth their salt will know this haircut inside out already. “Simply ask for a French crop,” he says.

SS19 Hair Trends - French Crop

How To Style It

This is a versatile trim that can take on different looks depending on how it’s styled. To keep things classic, Shanahan advises a simple styling routine. “Towel dry it with a little bit of clay or wax. “Effortless, and perfect for that guy on the go.”

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Contemporary Afro

Going au naturel upstairs doesn’t have to mean channelling Captain Caveman. Modern barbering techniques have created a new way for you to rock your god-given hairstyle while still keeping things crisp, neat and intentional.

There’s been an overarching trend for natural styles coming through for a while now, and Barber Barber’s afro-hair specialist Tyson Pyne has witnessed it firsthand.

“Big natural styles, such as loose curls or a big afro with sharp edges and a tapered or faded back and sides are in,” says Pyne. “Men are now becoming more open to embracing the quality of hair they have naturally.”

What To Ask For

Explain to your barber that you want to go big and natural while keeping edges and shape nice and clean. You could ask for a skin fade or just a taper, depending on how polished you want the finished product to look.

SS19 Hair Trends - Afro

How To Style It

To keep this sort of style looking good, Pyne advises washing, drying and conditioning the hair one or two times a week. “The hair needs to be nourished with organic oils, such as coconut oil or olive oil spray, to keep the scalp and hair moist.”

A sponge brush is also a vital tool in creating these big, natural looks. Use one in conjunction with a fibre cream for a lofty, voluminous finish.

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Bleached

Historic cases of bleached hair actually looking any good are few and far between. Much more numerous are instances of it going horrifically wrong. There was Justin Timberlake circa 1997 with that instant ramen swagger, Kanye West’s ill-conceived homage to Trevor McDonald, and, of course, the king of bad style decisions, Guy Fieri.

However, in recent years, a contingent of celebrity men have been making a strong case for hitting the bottle. Among them are Zac Efron, Zayn Malik and contender for World’s Coolest Man, Jonah Hill. If you were ever thinking of giving it a go for yourself, this summer is the perfect time.

Short hair is best for bleaching,” explains Mills. “This is because it’s easier to get a clean and consistent colour. Still, with the right colourist it’s more than possible to pre-lighten any length of hair.”

What To Ask For

It’s worth remembering that bleach is serious stuff. “Always ask for a patch test – they’re very important,” says Ken Hermes, ambassador for The Bluebeards Revenge grooming brand and the mental health awareness group The Lions Barber Collective. “No hairdresser should bleach your hair the same day – it needs to be tested first, as does your skin.”

SS19 Hair Trends - Bleach

How To Style It

Regardless of what cut you go for, just ensure your hair is as nourished and hydrated as possible. “This is a chemical treatment that will change the texture and condition of your hair,” adds Mills. “But this can be helped with the right conditioner.”

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Messy Mid-Length

Short styles have dominated the men’s hair arena for some time now, but thanks to a few high-profile celebs making a foray into shoulder-length territory, mid-length hair is back on the menu. We’re talking Kit Harington, Dev Patel, Harry Styles – all of whom have been instrumental in showing the world why longer, tousled trims are the way forward.

“This is a classic because it is so versatile and can be worn on or off the face with little effort,” says Shanahan. Although, with hair of this length, it is important to use a good shampoo and conditioner, and have a knowledgeable barber who is proficient in scissor cutting.”

What To Ask For

When settling into the chair, Shanahan suggests asking for a “square layered haircut”, but if in any doubt whatsoever, take a picture along with you for insurance.

SS19 Hair Trends - Mid Messy

How To Style It

Aside from the way it looks, the best thing about this cut is how straightforward it is to style at home. “It can be rough towel-dried with a little bit of pomade for a sleeker look or diffused with sea salt for a more structured finish,” says Shanahan. “Again, for me, this type of haircut will never go out of fashion.”

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