How To Style The Side Part Hairstyle

The side part hairstyle got its start in the early 1940’s during a time when a man needed his hair to stay neat and tidy while putting on and removing his hat throughout the day.  Back then you could see this look donned by such famous movie stars as Humphrey Bogart and Clark Gable. In fact, it’s probably safe to assume that your grandpa rocked this look at some point. It’s a style that has been mimicked throughout the decades and this one is no exception.

This slick style experienced a major revival in 2009/2010 when AMC introduced us to the suave, sophisticated cast of Mad Men. The employees of Sterling Draper Cooper Price certainly know what the people want and the people definitely want the perfectly placed locks of Don Draper.

Is The Side Part For You?

In 2012, the demand for this style certainly hasn’t slowed down. We have seen this ‘do on an array of celebrities including George Clooney, Leonardo Di Caprio, and Ryan Gosling. Now, you don’t need to have the impeccable bone structure of these stars to achieve this look because this style works for just about any face shape.

How To Ask For It

So how do you describe this style to your barber? Well, unless your barber lives under a rock, chances are he/she has seen Mad Men. But on the off chance that this isn’t the case, it’s pretty straightforward and easy to describe. If you’re going for the Pete Campbell, have your barber leave the sides finger length and the top around 4 inches long. If Roger Sterling is more your style have your barber use the clippers and take the top a little shorter, maybe 2 inches long total.

How to Style

  1. Take your hair product of choice and run it through your hair while it’s still damp. I like to use American Crew Pomade for that old school shine without being super greasy. But if you need a firmer hold, go for American Crew Firm Hold Styling Gel.  It still has a decent amount of shine and won’t flake like a lot of gels have a tendency to do.
  2. Take your comb and create a part on the side of your head.
  3. Form a small wave in the front of your hair by combing your bangs up and back towards the opposite side of your part.
  4. Finish by combing the sides back.

And there you have it. A style your grandfather would be proud of. And if it get’s you half the action it gets Don Draper then, men of the world, you are welcome.

Jaimee resides in Portland, OR working as a master barber at 77 Salon, one of the top salons in the trendy Pearl District. Check out her Facebook Page to learn more about her.

5 Comments

  • Reply August 2, 2012

    Carlos Franco

    I love this hair style! It’s a classic for all ages and a major upgrade from my mother’s bowl-cut.

    Thank you Male-Standard!

    Carlos Franco

  • Reply September 8, 2012

    Andrew

    This is absolutely THE best article I’ve ever seen on the iconic side part haircut of the ’50s/early ’60s!

    • Reply September 13, 2012

      Male Standard

      Glad you liked it Andrew!

  • Reply April 6, 2013

    manu

    I do part my hair but the side part doesnt slicks back…it just sits vertically down rather than backward…what to do

  • […] This is a hairstyl I have been getting a lot of requests for in the shop this spring.  A slick side part is a commanding look that oozes sex appeal, think Don Draper or pretty much anyone from the Mad Men cast. To achieve this look, use a pomade (I like American Crew) and run it through your hair while it’s still damp. Take your comb and create your part. Make a small wave on the front of your hair by combing your bangs up and back towards the side. Read more: The Side Part Hairstyle […]

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