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The modern disconnected slick-back: What it is & how to style it

modern disconnected slick-back

Right now, fashion is treating the men’s hair industry to some impeccable styles. In particular, the slicked-back looks of the 1950s. But while these classic styles possess kudos among barbers, modern men’s fashion has forced them to evolve.

One evolution is the disconnected slick-back. This adaptation is a style that’s versatile enough to be worn in the office and out on the town. It looks great with an undercut and can be worn messy with texture, height and a matt finish, or tight with a traditional wet-look.

With this in mind we’ve enlisted the help of industry-leading barber, and founder of the Lions Barber Collective, Tom Chapman to give you the definitive guide on how to style a disconnected slick-black in the comfort of your own home. Here is what he suggests…

modern disconnected slick-back
The disconnected slick-back. Image credit The Bluebeards Revenge

It all starts at the barber shop

To create the perfect disconnected slick-back, you’ll need your hair styled in a particular way. It’s all about keeping plenty of length on top so that it can be guided back towards the crown. The disconnection is the most crucial part of this style, so ask your barber for a grade two on the back and sides that neatly fades away to the nape. For a more comprehensive guide on what to ask your barber for, take a look at our barber to barber guide.

At home

Start by washing your hair in warm water with a decent shampoo and conditioner to make sure any previous hair products are removed. Then, rough dry your hair with a towel and apply a sea salt spray as a pre-styling agent. This will give the hair some early structure for you to work with.

modern disconnected slick-back
Tom Chapman in his barbershop in Torquay. Image credit The Bluebeards Revenge

A disconnected slick-back does require some maintenance, and if you’re looking for a barber shop-quality finish every day, it’s worth investing in a decent hair dryer if you don’t already have one.

Blow-dry your hair and guide your locks back towards your crown with a quiff roller to add volume, shape and texture. Getting the best results from a quiff roller requires some practice, especially when you’re wielding a hair dryer with your other hand. It’s all about gently twizzling the brush through your locks and guiding the hair backwards to achieve a volumised slick-back look.

Finally, finish the look with a quality matt paste for a style that can be reworked throughout the day. A small amount goes along way, so be conservative when you run it through your hair. And there you have it – a modern adaptation of the classic slick-back style. You can thank us later…

Tom Chapman is an ambassador and advisor to leading male grooming company The Bluebeards Revenge. The brand prides itself on its barbershop-quality range of shaving, hair styling and beard grooming products.