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The Crop Top Fade: Historic and Contemporary

Where modern meets classic

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These days, nearly every popular hairstyle is described as being classic or timeless. But all too often these terms more accurately mean “fleetingly popular for the last 70 years or so”.

That’s not the case with this bad boy.

Alternatively called the French crop, most people would say this look had its heyday in the 90s when actually its roots stretch back more than two millennia (that’s over 2,000 years). In the most basic of terms, this style is a Caesar combined with an undercut. It takes Julius’ famous forehead fringe and shears the sides and back short.

The finalized form was first made famous by the legendary warrior-king Henry V of England (check out Timothée Chalamet’s crop in Netflix’s The King) and it’s stuck around ever since. Nowadays the monarch’s more bowl-shaped variety of crops has been mostly forgone in favor of textured waves and spikes. The forehead-shrinking fringe can be long or short, jagged or straight as an arrow. As seemingly all modern cuts have done, the present incarnation puts the manicured skin-fade to heavy use, with hard lines and shaved designs often being added for pizzazz.

It’s a look that certainly stands out, and yet is ultimately fairly low-maintenance, making it an ideal everyday ‘do for the modern (weekend) warrior-gent.

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