Here’s What to Ask Your Barber for If You Want a Wolf Cut

If you want in on the latest and greatest hairstyle trend, then it’s still early enough to get ahead of the pack. The choppy, layered wolf cut has years-old roots in K-Pop, and is finally huffing and puffing its way through the barbershops of Williamsburg, Fish Town, and Silver Lake. (And some A-List red carpets as of late, too—see Harris Dickinson as example alpha.)

Think of the men’s wolf cut as a more flowy, textured, and fringey spin on the modern shag mullet, a style easily modified for different hair textures and densities. It wears well on many and is, above all, characterized by its general wild, untamed nature. While your local barber or stylist hopefully knows how to achieve this hairstyle, we still got some tips from a much-trusted pro—barber Brandon Faulk, who cuts hair at Church Barber in San Francisco (in the Hayes Valley district, so, yeah, big wolf-pack energy happening there).

How to Get the Wolf Cut

Here is Faulk’s advice on achieving the wolf cut—both on your end of the deal, and in the barber chair.

Get the Length Right

First things first, Faulk suggests working with four to six inches or more in order to get optimal results. “From a straight buzz you could start setting the shape and foundation with three inches of growth,” he says. Maybe a nice mullet to start, then? As for the timeline to get to that four to six inches worth: “It would take about seven or eight months for full form, from a fresh buzz cut.”

Kill the Buzz

The wolf cut is almost entirely a scissor cut, says Faulk. “The only reason I’d use clippers is if the customer wants a taper on the sides, for a more modern look.” That’s where it would really veer into full modern-mullet territory. As for any tapering though, Faulk advises the barber to use a classic graduation as opposed to anything blunt or harshly defined. But again, it’s going to look more natural if you focus on layering the sides as opposed to a clipper taper. And on that note…

Layer it on Thick

The barber or stylist should primarily do a layering technique on the back, sides, and top, Faulk explains. “Ask for a lot of point cutting to create uneven movements,” he explains. “I would use my feather [styling/texturizing] razor to add a softer finish to the overall cut.”

Modify it to Stand Out

Just because you’re part of the “Wolf Pack” doesn’t mean you can’t have an individual expression on the style. “The beauty of a wolf cut is that it’s very unique to the individual. It’s important to start with a very thorough consultation so you can really tailor the cut to your personal style [and hair type],” Faulk adds.

Here is Faulk’s quick advice on how the wolf cut can be tweaked for different hair textures and densities:

Fine/thin hair: “The barber should use square laying [which creates internal texture], to bring it to its full potential.”

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