Trends come and go fast, and it can be hard keeping up with what’s hot and what’s not. One minute you’re feeling dapper and fresh AF, the next you’re entire look is old news. Thankfully, while 2017 experienced more than its fair share of upheavals (with major curveballs in the last leg of it, too!), grooming-wise, it’s been a relatively chill year. Unlike the last couple of years that saw the rise of man-buns, undercuts, and bushy face fur, not to mention, all the wild, gimmicky trends that came along with them, 2017 was—as the kids say—quite low-key.
So before we say goodbye to 2017, let’s take a look back and appreciate the subtle trends that have made their mark on the heads and faces of many a man.
1) The Buzzed Down ‘Do
The overly coiffed ‘do’s of the 2010s were often hell to primp and style every day, which is probably why many men just threw in the towel and got almost all of their hair sheared away in 2017. A no fuss hairstyle in the truest sense, the buzzcut was one easy way to look effortlessly cool, and even ruggedly manly (if you had the cheekbones and stubble for it, that is).
Of course, just because this cut leaves its wearer with hardly any hair, it doesn’t mean that there’s no room for artistic expression. 2017 was the year technicolor domes became a thing, and many a buzzed head was dyed in popping and vibrant shades.
2) The Retro Stache
Here’s the thing: a thick mustache is hard to pull off, especially if you’re foregoing the beard or stubble to help anchor it down. In fact, after its heyday in the '70s, this style has mostly stayed in dad territory. 2017 saw it climbing back up the ranks, with more and more young men unironically sporting the look.
We guess if you want thick facial hair but can’t be bothered with full coverage, or don’t want to deal with finicky styles like goatees or balbos, a chevron is the way to go. Just brace yourself for possible mocking while it grows in—the pedo-stache isn’t flattering on anyone.
3) The Low-key Curtain
Amazingly, the '70s stache isn’t the only thing from the last millenium to come back into fashion. And of all the things to give us a blast from the past, it’s the boyband classic: curtain hair! Many Asian idols (aka those K-pop dudes your lady friends always squeal about) rocked a subtle middle part and fringe this year, and the style is creeping into the Philippines as well. We won’t be surprised if the hairdo crosses the Pacific and Hollywood gets overrun by curtain-haired gents soon.
That being said, the best way to ride this trend without ending up looking like a '90s reject is to give your hair some volume—that way, your hair won’t look as flat and, well, curtain-y.
4) The Well-Groomed Scruff
When beards got popular again, a lot of men (those who were genetically predisposed to having a beard, at least) took the opportunity by the horns and went full Mountain Man. And with so much bushy hair ready to be styled, there arrived some very questionable trends (that’s right, we’re looking at you flower and glitter beards).
This 2017, however, beard styles finally settled down again. The past year was all about keeping your beard well-groomed and shaped, whether you were sporting a full beard, a van dyke, or even just long stubble.
Since it’s been a good, if quiet year, for male grooming, we can’t help but wonder how 2018 is going to fare. Will something like the undercut—a style that got so popular it became something of a mockery of itself—rise again? Or will a new classic be born and rule the trends of next year. 2018 is looking bright so far, so fingers crossed that we’ll be seeing good things.