How To Get Zayn Malik's New Haircut – A Guide To The Buzzcut

The former One Direction star has a new buzzcut. Here's how to pull it off yourself

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Former One Direction star Zayn Malik has 'done a Britney Spears' this week, after stepping out with a shaved head – the pop star grooming equivilant of saying  'f**k this s**t I've had enough' – though hopefully he won't follow it up by attacking anyone with an umbrella.

Whatever the psychological reasons behind the change, Malik's new mop does look rather good, as a proper buzzcut generally does.

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To help you do something similar, we spoke to Skye, a barber from award-winning Covent Garden outlet (and Esquire favourite) Ruffians.

"The buzzcut is a simple military haircut which keeps on returning to the public eye after a celebrity ‘has had enough’ and just gets the clippers out," says Skye.

"However, buzzcuts aren’t always so utilitarian and can be a defined, smart and attractive look if you are able to pull it off."

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What is it:
"The buzzcut is clippered all over, very short and close to the scalp. You can use a variety of different grades, from a cut throat razor (0) up to about a grade 3.

"You can accentuate a shadow effect by fading on the sides and keeping the hair longer on top then shorter on back and sides. This will form a nice contrast and also helps to square off the head if you have a rounder face."

Zayn’s version:
"For Zayn's hair, ask for a grade 1 (3mm) or 1.5 on top, and grade 0.5 (1.5mm) on the back and sides.

"The problems with this cut is that there is not a very subtle blend between the two grades. The shape of the hairline requires a bit more hair on top to decentuate the line. For a more fashionable look, you could pull off more severe lines, and keep it dead straight on the hairline."

Why it's a good choice:
"The buzzcut is a low maintenance hairstyle. Products aren’t necessary and you don’t have to worry about styling yourself every morning. It will keep you cool in the summer. Plus getting rid of your hair might be cathartic if you're feeling stressed after quitting a world famous boyband."

Who can pull it off:
"Men with more angular, rectangular and square faces are best suited to this hair, as well as those who can grow some complementary stubble. It also works best with darker hair and more tanned skin tones, so it doesn’t appear like you’re just balding. This is also a good option for those with thinning hair as it can conceal sparse growth."

Who can't:
"This look isn’t ideal if you have a round face, as it could make you look more like a ball. If you have a widow’s peak or a strong hairline, you should avoid a buzzcut as it will draw attention to the hairline. If your hair is thinning at the crown, you should shave the whole head really short, or you will draw attention to the bald
patch. If you have fair hair, be aware you should ask for a grade longer, otherwise it will appear really short / translucent and you might appear fully bald."

Maintenance tips:
"Get it touched up by the barber every three / four weeks to keep it sharp. Your skin will probably get dry at first, as your scalp isn’t used to being so exposed to the elements – so use an anti-dandruff shampoo which will stimulate blood flow to the scalp and keep your skin oxidised, retaining its natural oils.

"If you feel the need to use a product, a clay will keep it textured and matte. Get a buzzcut before you go on holiday to avoid tanlines upon your return!"