When a Perfect Man Bun Works, it Works

Creating a great man bun is harder than it looks.

Creating the perfect man bun is an art. Go ahead, laugh. But once you see a bad man bun, you’re going to remember what I just typed, and think, “oh, she was right.”

Perfect man buns have topped all sorts of man heads over the past year. One of the more famous man buns to date has been Jared Leto’s glorious up-do. (RIP, Leto man bun — it died in early March 2015 because he had to take some dumb movie role as the Joker in “Suicide Squad.”)

Leto man bun

Although Leto’s man bun is long gone, we thought we should comment on it to create some sort of makeshift “must dos” that can help create  the perfect man bun.

1. You need thick hair

While men with long, thick hair typically have great man buns, a fella with shorter hair can rock a bun with confidence if he’s got a nice head of hair. I mean, get a load of this guy.

Messy man bun with shorter hair

He has shoulder-length hair, and his man bun is doing just fine. Also: After giving this fella a second look, I also think that wavy hair makes for a good man bun.

2. It needs to be messy

You don’t need a brush, comb, or a shower to create a great man bun. In fact, I’m pretty sure that clean, straight hair equals the death of a good man bun. This is an example of a sensibly messy man bun.

Messy man bun

So, what are the tell-tale signs of a bad man bun? Well, from what we’ve seen, the following all will make any man bun attempt fail… badly. (Sorry, Leo and Colin. Both of your man buns were inspiration for these tips.)

1. A smooth bun typically doesn’t work

Colin Farrell isn’t terrible to look at but his man bun is. The slick-back man bun, or the freshly washed slick-back man bun, are terrible things.

2. A too low man bun is a bad idea if it’s pulled back tightly

If the bun is too low, and is too clean in its execution (as stated above), no man can claim a good look.

However, I think we all need to remember that the real, true key to creating the perfect man bun depends on the man. After all, if a man knows what he likes, he is typically able to wear it well.

And this list wouldn’t be complete without our own editor’s favorite man bun, that of her baby daddy. This is one example of a clean-looking man bun at a recent wedding they attended along with their daughter, Imogene.


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Image of man bun from Shutterstock

Abbie Stutzer

Writer, editor, and owner of Ginchy!, a freelance writing and editing company, and home funeral hub. Adores smart sex ed, sustainable ag, spooky history, women's health, feminism, horror, wine, and sci-fi.