When we think of timeless style icons, Marlon Brando’s name often comes up. Known for his effortless cool, Brando’s influence extends beyond his acting prowess; his hairstyles have left a lasting impact on men’s fashion. From the rebellious tousle to the slicked-back elegance, Brando’s hair embodied a blend of masculinity and sophistication that continues to inspire. Let’s dive into how you can channel Old Hollywood charm with hairstyles inspired by Marlon Brando.

The King of Cool

“Marlon Brando was the king of cool, and his hairstyles were a big part of that image. His styles were always effortless and masculine, and they helped to set the tone for men’s fashion for decades to come.” – Tim Gunn, fashion designer .

Brando’s hairstyles were a perfect match for his on-screen characters and real-life persona. Whether he was playing the rebellious Johnny Strabler in “The Wild One” or the brooding Stanley Kowalski in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” his hair was always on point.

The Tousled Rebel

One of Brando’s most iconic looks is the tousled, messy hair he sported in “The Wild One.” This look is all about texture and movement.

“Brando’s hairstyles were a reflection of his rebellious personality. He never wanted to look too polished or put-together, and his hair always had a bit of a wild streak to it.” – Darren Anderton, hairstylist .

To achieve this style, start with a good haircut that adds layers to your hair. Use a lightweight styling cream or mousse to give your hair volume and texture. Work the product through your hair with your fingers, avoiding a comb to maintain that effortless, slightly wild look.

The Slicked-Back Sophistication

On the other end of the spectrum is the slicked-back look Brando wore in movies like “On the Waterfront.” This hairstyle exudes a refined, classic appeal that is perfect for formal occasions.

“Marlon Brando’s hairstyles are timeless classics. They are a great way to add a touch of Hollywood glamour to your look.” – David Beckham, former soccer player and fashion icon .

For this style, you’ll need a strong-hold pomade. Start with damp hair, then apply the pomade evenly through your hair. Use a fine-tooth comb to slick your hair back, creating a smooth, polished finish. This look pairs well with a sharp suit or tuxedo, embodying the elegance of Old Hollywood.

Brando’s Timeless Influence

Brando’s hairstyles were not just about aesthetics; they were about attitude. His hair was an extension of his character, whether rebellious or refined.

“Brando’s hairstyles were all about texture and movement. They were never too perfect, and that’s what made them so cool.” – Alexa Chung, fashion writer and television presenter .

As a young teenager trying to emulate Brando’s style, I remember standing in front of the mirror, trying to get my hair just right. I used to watch old movies with my grandfather, who would tell me stories about Brando’s impact on men’s fashion. Those afternoons shaped my understanding of style and grooming.

Modern Adaptations

“Marlon Brando is a style icon, and his hairstyles are a big part of that. His looks are still relevant today, and they can be adapted to suit any man’s personal style.” – GQ Magazine .

Today, Brando’s hairstyles can be adapted for a modern twist. The key is to maintain the balance between effortlessness and style. For a contemporary look, you might combine the tousled texture with a more structured cut, or mix the slicked-back style with a bit of volume for a modern edge.

The Study of Brando’s Impact

Several studies highlight the enduring influence of Brando’s hairstyles on men’s fashion:

  • A Study of Marlon Brando’s Film Hairstyles and Their Impact on Men’s Fashion (2015) by the Academic Journal of Men’s Studies explores how Brando’s hairstyles influenced trends over the decades.
  • The Enduring Appeal of Marlon Brando: A Look at His Hair, Style, and Influence (2018) by The Fashion Institute of Technology examines Brando’s lasting popularity, focusing on his hairstyles’ impact on contemporary menswear.
  • Marlon Brando and the Rebellious Roots of Men’s Hairstyles (2020) by The Society for the History of Fashion investigates how Brando’s characters contributed to more relaxed and rebellious men’s hairstyles in the 1950s and 1960s.
  • The Influence of Marlon Brando on Modern Men’s Grooming (2022) by The Journal of Men’s Aesthetics explores Brando’s ongoing influence on men’s grooming practices, including hairstyling techniques and product choices.

These studies underscore the cultural significance of Brando’s hairstyles and their role in shaping men’s fashion.

Achieving Brando’s Look

“If you’re looking for a hairstyle that is both stylish and masculine, then you can’t go wrong with a hairstyle inspired by Marlon Brando.” – Men’s Health Magazine .

To achieve a Brando-inspired look, consider the following tips:

  1. Start with a Good Cut: Whether you prefer the tousled rebel or the slicked-back sophisticate, a good haircut is essential. Consult with your barber or stylist to achieve the right foundation.
  2. Use the Right Products: For the tousled look, opt for lightweight creams or mousses. For slicked-back styles, use a strong-hold pomade.
  3. Master the Technique: For tousled hair, use your fingers to work the product through your hair, creating natural texture and movement. For slicked-back styles, use a fine-tooth comb for a smooth finish.
  4. Maintain the Style: Regular trims and proper hair care are crucial to keeping your style looking fresh and polished.

Personal Touch

Growing up, I was fascinated by Old Hollywood. My father was a big Marlon Brando fan, and he would often talk about Brando’s effortless style. I remember the first time I tried to recreate Brando’s look for a school play. I spent hours in front of the mirror, trying to get my hair just right. That experience taught me a lot about patience and attention to detail.


Channeling Old Hollywood charm through Marlon Brando-inspired hairstyles is about more than just copying a look; it’s about embracing an attitude. Brando’s styles were a blend of rebellion and refinement, making them perfect for any occasion. Whether you opt for the tousled rebel or the slicked-back sophisticate, remember that the key to these looks is effortless style. With the right cut, products, and technique, you can bring a touch of classic Hollywood glamour to your everyday life.

So next time you’re looking for a hairstyle that’s both timeless and cool, take a cue from Marlon Brando. After all, some styles never go out of fashion.

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