Long before Crew Cuts was the name of J. Crews adorable line of clothing for boys and girls, it was mid- century summers must have hair cut for boys of all ages.
Also known affectionately as a butch cut, a buzz cut and a flat top, it was, along with baseball, camping, and Good Humor, an essential part of summer’s ritual. Getting your hair shorn was a rite of passage for the boys of summer.
Although it appeared to be a care-free- no-fuss-no-muss hairstyle, keeping it up or keeping it down required maintenance with a mid-century product called Butch Wax. One manufacturer of the paste-like substance promised to help keep your hair as evenly “as the bristles of a new brush”.
There was not just one size fits all crew cuts…the variations were exacting and numerous according to these Max Factor vintage ads from 1961.
The Standard Crew Cut
This was the most popular of all short-hair cuts. “It is trained to stand upright in front and on top, with the sides cut close to the shape of the head. It’s length is about an inch and a half at front to an inch at the crown and !/2 inch at back.
The Short Pomp
“This haircut looks like the regular crew cut in shape but it is slightly longer in length so that the hair begins to lie down a bit and cover the scalp when combed back. The top front length is about 2 inches, an inch and a half at crown and an inch at the back.”
This haircut is getting more and more popular, The flat-topboogie has long sides which must be kept carefully trained to look neat. The sides are combed back and upward, pulling the longer strands around the back of the head in a semi ducktail.
The West Pointer
This is the official haircut of the US Military Academy. All hair on sides and back is kept clipped down to the skin. hair above forehead is rounded to shape of the skull with a maximum length of an eight of an inch for plebes and 1 inch for upper classmen.
Copyright (©) 20012 Sally Edelstein All Rights Reserved
My very conservative, Midwestern born and raised husband’s crew cut is a classic! He’d freak out however if you called it a butch cut! LOL!