Bowl cut

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A child using a drill sporting a bowl cut.

A bowl cut, or bowl haircut, also known as a helmet haircut or a mushroom cut, is a simple and plain short haircut where the hair is cut with straight bangs on the front and the rest of the hair is the same length all the way around or is cut short on the sides and back.[1] It is so named because it looks as though someone put a bowl on the head and cut off or trimmed short all the visible hair.[1] A bowl cut is also known for being a cheap and easy haircut often sported by children.


A 1920s Soviet Ukrainian poster; the man on the left sports a bowl cut

Historically, the bowl haircut was popular among common people of various nationalities as an easy and relatively neat cut by a non-professional.[1] Indeed, it was done by putting a cooking pot of a fit size to the level of ears, and all hair below the rim was cut or shaved off. In some cultures it was a normal type of haircut. In other cultures the bowl cut was viewed as an attribute of poverty, signifying that the wearer could not afford to visit a barber.[1]

In popular culture[edit]

Dee Dee Ramone's Beatles-inspired bowl cut.



  • Child actor Adam Rich popularized the hairstyle with parents in the late 1970s and early 1980s as the youngest-son character Nicholas Bradford on the American series Eight Is Enough, which was syndicated around the world.[4] Joey Lawrence, when he was a child TV star, also had the same fuller on the sides version as Rich.[5]
Jewish-American comedian Moe Howard with his trademark bowl cut.


  • From the mid-1960s onwards, the haircut resurfaced as a counterculture style credited to the moptop hairstyles of groups like The Beatles and The Monkees.[1][7] A longer version, known as the mod haircut, was popular among teenagers from the late 1960s until it was supplanted by the long-haired hippie or surfer look of the early 1970s.
  • During the 1980s, bowl cuts were popularised by punk rock groups like the Ramones.[8] The bowl cut gained popularity among teenaged and pre-teen boys in the late 1980s and the hairstyle was a veritable fad in some American locales, especially among the skater subculture. The popularity of the bowl cut faded by the mid-1990s.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Bowl Haircut at". Retrieved May 6, 2013. 
  2. ^ Spock on IMDB
  3. ^ Adam Brown with bowl cut
  4. ^ ""Eight Is Enough" cast: Where are they now, 30 years later?". Fox News. January 15, 2013. Retrieved May 4, 2013., Jan 15, 2013. Quote: "Playing the youngest of the Bradford clan, Adam Rich was America's little brother. In the late '70s and early '80s, thousands of boys sported a Nicholas-style haircut." Includes photo in slideshow.
  5. ^ "Kid's Haircuts: The Good, the Bad, and The Bowl Cut". Retrieved May 7, 2013.  Includes photo of Lawrence.
  6. ^ "Doctor Zee entry at". Retrieved May 7, 2013.  Includes photos of Rist and Stuart.
  7. ^ Sims, Josh (1999). Rock Fashions. Omnibus Press. pp. 151–152. ISBN 0-7119-7733-X.
  8. ^ Ramones in Rock and Roll High School
  9. ^ 1990's Time Period in Fashion History