Jack Grealish’s 90s-style curtains are a sight to behold. There’s the shine! The volume! The headband! We haven’t seen a man rock the flop this well since David Beckham brought male hair accessories to the mainstream.
Sure, we could talk about the 25-year-old’s power on the pitch – and debate Gareth Southgate’s decision to sub our favourite sub. But, let’s face it, you can hop over to Sky Sports for that kind of analysis.
Instead, we want to talk about the hair, because if there’s one thing that’s clear about England’s Euro 2020 squad, it’s that they care about their barnets (almost) as much as their football.
Phil Foden bleached his hair blonde – a nod to Paul Gascoigne’s Euro ’96 look – in the hopes he would “bring a bit of Gazza on to the pitch”. But it’s Grealish’s locks that have everyone talking, not least because of a certain Keira Knightley meme.
It’s not easy to look like Leonardo DiCaprio, Hugh Grant and every popular boy in school we were desperate to get detention with, though.
Anyone – male or female – who’s tried to keep one of those damn Alice bands in place will know they have a mind of their own. So, how is Grealish’s look so apparently gravity-defying? We asked hair stylists to reveal his tricks.
“Jack Grealish uses a combination of large black hair elastics and a styling gel/pomade,” says Alice Atkins, artistic director at Hair Ott. “If you are looking to achieve this look at home we recommend to blow dry the hair first then apply the styling product. My best tip is to use the tightest band that you can to keep in place.”
Guray Kesman, owner of Kesman Grooming, reckons some further prep might be required. “Firstly, put hair cream into your hair and then push back tight. This will allow the hair to stay pushed back with the headband in,” he says. “I would also use metal locked in hoops into the hair to keep everything in place. Finally, for the front of the hair, use a firm hold hair wax to keep in place, and finish with hair spray.”
Stéphane Ferreira, from Live True London, says if your headband keeps pinging off, it’s probably the wrong size – whether too big or too small.
“Sizing is key to keep the headband in place while he is moving around the football pitch,” she says. “The headband’s grip is also important to ensure that it stays in place. Choosing a headband with a wavy grip works best. Adding the right styling products such as wax or a strong hold hair gel would also help keep the hairband in. Another trick is to hide hair clips at the back of the head to keep the headband in place and firmly attached to the hair.”
But what does the man himself say? Grealish was asked about his hair routine in a recent interview and it is certainly not a shower-and-go scenario. He didn’t mention band, sadly, but did share his multi-step prep, which includes washing (without rushing the conditioner), towel drying, applying Moroccan oil, blow drying, then finishing with hair spray.
So there you have it: a man of many dexterities.
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