Comb over

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Don Rickles with combover, 1970s.

A comb over or combover is a hairstyle worn by bald or balding men in which the hair is grown long and combed over the bald area to minimize the evidence of baldness. Sometimes the part is lowered so that more hair can be used to cover the balding area.

In Japan, men with comb overs are called "bar code men" (バーコード人), referring to the similarity between the striations caused by the comb and the UPC on products. The "barcode style" is called "bākōdo na kamigata" (バーコードな髪型).[1]

A variant of the comb over was patented in 1977.


A variation of the comb over where baldness is concealed by long hair combed in three separate directions has a U.S. Patent 4,022,227 by Donald J. Smith and his father, Frank J. Smith, of Orlando, Florida. In 2004, the Smiths were awarded an Ig Nobel Prize.

Famous comb overs[edit]

Charles, Prince of Wales with side parted combover.
Modern combover of Mohamed Rabbae derived from the Mod haircut, where the hair on the back of the head is combed forward.
Combover of Swedish King Karl IX was arranged to resemble a cross.

In popular culture[edit]

Donald Trump's combover
  • Combover: The Movie a one hour documentary produced and directed by Chris Marino and Tim Fenoglio chronicles a U.S. cross country trip in search of the "Holy Grail" of combovers.
  • The Scottish comedian Gregor Fisher lampooned the comb over style with his character The Baldy Man, which featured in a television advertisement before graduating to its own TV show.
  • Stand-up comedian Heywood Banks sometimes sports a comb over despite having a full head of hair, stating[citation needed] "I'm not going bald, but I like the look!"
  • On an episode of Room 101, newsreader Lorraine Kelly called comb overs "Pedal Bin Hair".
  • One of the villains from Cars 2, Professor Zündapp, has a broken roof rack that resembles a comb over.
  • American film and TV actor Bill Murray wore a combover as "Ernie McCracken" in the film Kingpin.
  • In Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, there is a teacher by the name Mr. Comb Over. Instead of regular hair, he uses his beard to cover his scalp.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ From: Japan Akihiko Yonekawa ed Slang Dictionary (3rd edition) publishing house in Tokyo in 2006, 483 pages. see also: „Miscellaneous“ in the article on barcodes in the Japanese Wikipedia[dubious ]
  2. ^ Stephenson, Paul (2010). Constantine, Roman Emperor, Christian Victor. Penguin. p. 207(print),181(ebook). ISBN 9781468303001.
  3. ^ Dugdale, John (March 9, 2002). "Volume control". Retrieved 2012-09-05. 
  4. ^ "Ask the Family, BBC2, Monday". 2012-05-09. Archived from the original on 2008-05-16. Retrieved 2012-09-05. 
  5. ^ Lewis, Rob. "Oxford Student - TT2005 Week 7 - Features - Charlton". Archived from the original on 2005-11-18. 
  6. ^ Littlejohn, Georgina (3 March 2011). "David Beckham's hair emulates Bobby Charlton's comb-over". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 2012-09-05. 
  7. ^[dubious ]
  8. ^ "الرئيس". Retrieved 2012-09-05. 
  9. ^ Handy, Bruce (March 31, 2011). "Shocking Truth Behind Donald Trump’s Hair Revealed?". Vanity Fair. 
  10. ^ Mcdermott, Nick; Nicolson, Stuart (June 11, 2008). "A step-by-step guide to the gravity-defying Donald Trump combover". Daily Mail Online. London. Retrieved 2012-09-05. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Walker, W. H. (2010). "Is the "Comb Over" Dying? A Mouse Model for Male Pattern Baldness (Androgenic Alopecia)". Endocrinology 151 (5): 1981–3. doi:10.1210/en.2010-0217. PMID 20410210.