The Floppy Hair Hall of Fame
Floppy men’s hairstyles have been around for a long time.
Witness the famous Frank Sinatra mug shot, Elvis, and the British Invasion hairdos. It can be argued that men’s floppy hair reached its zenith in the 1990s. The proliferance of teen magazines, grunge, and young hunks on TV shows and movies culminated into a prime time for floppy hairstyles. Matt’s recent discussion of Leonardo Dicaprio’s gorgeous hair in The Quick and the Dead reminded me of this important phenomenon, and inspired me to start The Floppy Hair Hall of Fame on Pinterest.
Here I will detail a bit about some of the most famously floppy hair and the different categories. For our purposes, I categorize floppy hair as consisting of a long section in front that falls to at least eye length. The ideal floppy hair should reach between the bottom of the eye and the mouth area. Leonardo Dicaprio, Christian Slater, and River Phoenix have all reached this ultimate ideal of prime floppiness. The longest hair that I would categorize as floppy would be reaching the bottom of the neck, just short of shoulder length. Any longer than that and it is merely long hair. Floppy hair is superior to long hair due to its volume and versatility.
So far (I have not completed my research yet) I have identified four categories of male celebrities with floppy hair.
The Teeny Flopper
This category holds the most members, as floppy hair is mainly a young man’s game. Eddie Furlong, the aforementioned Leo (Crown Prince of Floppy Hair), Jordan Knight (of NKOTB), Will Friedle, and Rider Strong (of Boy Meets World) all reside in this category. Basically, if they were a famous teen with floppy hair, or playing a teen, or featured in teen magazines as pin-ups, they belong here.
The Floppy Hunk
The men in this category are more mature and have a sexier vibe than the Teeny Flopper. Superstars Johnny Depp (still rocking the flop past 50!), River Phoenix, Christian Slater, Jared Leto (as featured in My So-Called Life), Keanu Reeves, Ethan Hawke, and Bill Pullman have successfully worked this look in their prime hunk years.
The Floppy Gentleman
Hugh Grant typifies this category of charming continental men with that boyish floppy hair. Young Peter Capaldi joined him in the floppy-haired extravaganza Lair of the White Worm. Cary Elwes, Rupert Everett and Colin Firth have featured the floppy ‘do as well. More currently, Doctor Who actors David Tennant and Matt Smith fall into this category.
The Controlled Flop
The most subtle of all floppy hair looks; the controlled flop may be overlooked at first, as the wearer slicks his floppy hair back into a very neat style. But when things get intense the flop breaks free, symbolizing a loss of emotional control! This look seems to be most prevalent in actors playing very uptight, professional, or emotionally bottled characters. Examples include Kyle MacLachlan in Twin Peaks, David Duchovny in The X-Files, and more recently, Mads Mikkelsen in Hannibal.