A mullet is a haircut that is short in the front and long in the back. The mullet should not be confused with the rattail, which consists of a long, narrow "tail" of hair growing from the back of the head. Mullets have been worn by males and females of all ages, but they have traditionally been most popular with younger men. A slogan or motto often associated with people who wear mullets is: "business in front, party in back."
History and cultural significance Edit
The mullet became popular in the 1970s (in part due to the influence of English pop star David Bowie), but is known to have been worn long before then. Urban legends have it dating back to 19th Century fishermen, who wore their hair long in the back to keep warm - hence the term mullet. The term is also used in the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke, in which George Kennedy's character refers to men with long hair as "mulletheads".
In the 1970s, the mullet was a short, square affair. In the 1980s, it became big and bouffant, and bemulleted men often indulged in other 1980s hair crazes such as spiked hair and blonde highlights. In the early 1990s, country singer Billy Ray Cyrus's "Achy Breaky" mullet fostered both imitation and ridicule.
There's nothing quite as bad as a bad haircut. And perhaps the worst of all is the cut we call The Mullet.It goes on to lampoon the hairstyle over several pages, including many photographs of celebrities sporting mullets. Soon after the article was published, it became popular for fans of the band, and for youth culture in general, to mock the hairstyle. This gradually led to the mullet being almost universally ridiculed. In the 2000s, a number of web sites sprung up with photographs of people with mullets, often accompanied by mocking comments based on stereotypes of mullet-wearers. The mullet and its associated lifestyle were central themes in movies such as Joe Dirt (2001) and television shows such as The Mullets (2003-2004). The term mullet was even added to the OED in 2001. 
Despite its reputation, the mullet remains a moderately popular hairstyle among certain social groups in various Western countries. In the U.S. and Canada, the mullet is particularly associated with working-class rural men, fans of heavy metal music, and ice hockey players. In the United Kingdom the mullet is most commonly associated with rural thugs, or with Central and Eastern Europeans, particularly professional footballers. In Australia the haircut is associated with Bogans and Australian rules football players, particarly those from the 1980s. In recent years, the mullet has enjoyed resurgent popularity among the hip set, in particular the emo sub-culture, probably due to its association with 1980s retro kitsch.
Synonyms and variationsEdit
The mullet goes by various nicknames, including:
- The 7 (shaped like the number seven)
- Achey-Breaky Big-Mistakey
- Ape Drape
- Beaver Paddle
- The Barry Melrose
- Business in Front, Party in Back
- Camaro Crash Helmet
- Canadian Passport
- Commonwealth Crewcut
- Hockey Hair
- Kentucky Waterfall
- The LPGA
- The MacGyver
- Mississippi Mudflap
- Missouri Compromise
- Mud Flap
- Nebraska Neck Warmer
- Soccer Rocker
- SFLB (short in front, long in back)
- STLB, Short top, long back
- Stilb- A reference to the STLB
- Shlong (short-long)
- Shorty Long-back
- Tennessee Tophat
- Wrestler's Wig
- The Wrestlemania
The word mullet has also been known to be pronounced "mullé"—French pronunciation with a silent "t" at the end—in order to ironically emphasize its often overlooked sophistication and finesse.
A wearer of a mullet may be referred to as "Mullet-Man". Or, if the mullet is particuarly impressive, "Mulletaur" (alternate spelling "Mulletor") may be used to identify the owner.
There are a number of notable variations on the mullet and terms which indicate the type of person wearing the mullet. These include:
- Bowlet - a mullet similar in front to a bowl cut, best known from the anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion where the character Ryoji Kaji has a bowlet
- Euromullet - a mullet worn by a European person (sometimes thought to be more suave and sophisticated than other mullets)
- Femullet - a mullet worn by a female
- Frolet - a mullet combined with an Afro (extremely rare)
- Mullet Chan - a mullet worn by teenagers of Chinese descent
- Mullet Singh - a mullet worn by teenagers of Indian descent
- Mullet Masztalerz - a mullet worn by teenagers of Polish descent
- Mulletino - a mullet worn by a Latino person
- Mullhawk - a mullet combined with a mohawk
- Skullet - bald on top, long in the back (see Devin Townsend for an excellent example)
- Skmullet - bald on top with a combover, long in the back
- Frullet - a "front" or "reverse" mullet, short all over but long at the front
- Skullet- bald on top, long in the back
It is a testament to the widespread appeal of the mullet that many different cultures and languages have their own terms for it:
- The Brazilian term is Chitãozinho e Xororó, in reference to the singers who started using this haircut in Brazil.
- The Chilean term is chocopanda in reference to the ubiquitous public transportation Chocolito Panda ice-cream sellers wearing such haircut. It is also called a "Zamorano", after Iván Zamorano.
- The Croatian/Serbian term is fudbalerka (the word is actually Serbian, but it crept into Croatian slang through pop-cultural osmosis), literally "footballer (hair)", a reference to its popularity among soccer players in the 1980s.
- The Danish term is Bundesliga-hår, which refers to its alleged popularity among Bundesliga soccer players, or alternatively, Svenskerhår (Swede-hair), referring to its popularity in Sweden.
- The Dutch term is matje, which means "little carpet/mat".
- The Finnish term is takatukka, which means "rear hair". Sometimes lätkätukka or tsekkitukka is also used, which means "ice hockey haircut" in reference to the Swedish term. Tsekkitukka means "Czech hockey hair" based on the Czech hockey players hairstyle. Mullets are a well known and still popular "hockeyhair" in Czech republic.
- The French term is Nuque longue which means "long in the neck". In Quebec French, it is referred to as la coupe Longueuil (referencing Longueuil, a suburb of Montreal that is considered lower-class) or as un pad, notably in Quebec City.
- The German term is Vokuhila, which stands for "vorne kurz, hinten lang" (short in front, long in the back).
- The Hebrew term is vilon, which means "curtain". Another common term is "Eli Ohana" haircut, named after a famous football player who wore this haircut.
- The Hungarian term is also Bundesliga or just simply footballist (soccer player) hair.
- The Icelandic term is Hebbi, referring to a nickname of an Icelandic singer called Herbert Guðmundsson sporting the hairstyle.
- The Norwegian term is hockeysveis, which means "ice hockey haircut".
- The Polish terms are: dywan which means "carpet" or na Ziobera - after soccer player Jacek Ziober or na Limahla after Limahl, or plereza meaning "cover for the back". This haircut was also associated with Czechoslovakian and East Germany sportsmen.
- The Romanian term is chicǎ, which means "long hair at the neck". This haircut is associated with redneck-like people and is socially associated with the lack of sophistication or culture.
- The Swedish term is hockeyfrilla, which means "ice hockey haircut" in reference to its popularity among some hockey players.
- The Turkish term is aslan yelesi or Fikirtepe modeli, which mean "lion's mane" and "Fikirtepe (a suburb of Istanbul where this style was popular among shuttle drivers) style", respectively.
Famous people who have worn a mullet Edit
- Andre Agassi - American tennis player, wore a bouffant mullet in the late 80s/early 90s
- David Beckham - UK footballer who brought the mullet back in to fashion in the UK in early 2000s. This move has lead to the mullet being an exceptionally popular haircut among young "trendy" males in the UK.
- Brian Bosworth - American football player
- Laurent Brochard - French Professional Cyclist, winner of the 1997 World Cycling Championship
- Warwick Capper - Australian Rules Football player and notorious lothario of the 1980's. Arguably the finest mullet in the history of Australian sport (a crowded field).
- John Daly - American professional golfer
- Dennis Eckersley - Hall of Fame baseball player
- Ric Flair - Professional wrestler (no longer has one).
- Mark Gastineau - former American football player
- Fraser Gehrig - Australian rules footballer. In 2004 he achieved cult status by wearing a mullet and then shaving it off for charity at the end of the year.
- Jason Gillespie - Australian test cricketer
- Wayne Gretzky - Professional hockey player
- Eddie Guerrero - Professional wrestler
- Scott Hall - Professional wrestler
- Glen Hoddle - 1980s footballer
- Jaromir Jagr - Hockey player. Wore a mullet most of his career, but changed to short hair in late 1990s.
- Randy Johnson - Baseball pitcher (no longer wears one as a member of the New York Yankees)
- Kevin Keegan - 1970s footballer, now a manager (he no longer has one)
- John Kruk - baseball player, member of the 1993 Philadelphia Phillies, many members of which sported a mullet
- Dennis Lillee - Australian test cricketer
- Shawn Michaels - Professional wrestler
- Barry Melrose - former hockey player, coach and ESPN commentator
- Kevin Nash - Professional wrestler
- Dwayne Schintzius - former basketball player
- Latrell Sprewell - NBA Player with a cornrow mullet
- Chris Waddle - 1980s Footballer
- Iván Zamorano - Chilean soccer player. Wore a mullet for most of his career.
- Rudi Völler - One of the most famous German soccer players. Wore a mullet for most of his career.
- Richard Dean Anderson - Star of MacGyver; abandoned it before 1997, possibly owing to the military look required to play USAF Special Forces Col. Jack O'Neill for Stargate SG-1
- Michael Bolton - had a mullet throughout his career in the late 80s to 90s.
- Ray Boltz - Christian singer, still has one
- Bono - Lead singer of U2, wore one in the 80s
- David Bowie - wore a mullet in the early 70s, when characterized as Ziggy Stardust
- Duane Chapman - Star of the A&E show Dog The Bounty Hunter
- Dave Coulier - had one while playing Joey Gladstone on Full House, as did many of the characters.
- Billy Ray Cyrus - American country singer - Famously referred to as his "Love Mullet" - incorporated the cutting of his famous mullet into an episode of his television series Doc
- Johnny Depp - used one in the TV series, 21 Jump Street.
- Roy Dupuis - Canadian Actor, played Michael Samuelle ('Jacques') in La Femme Nikita.
- Duran Duran members, John Taylor, Andy Taylor, Nick Rhodes, and Simon Le Bon, all sported long mullets during the 1980s.
- Clint Eastwood-- used a flat, non-bouffant mullet in the Dirty Harry series. It is sometimes viewed as one of the earliest mullets of modern times.
- Andrew Eldritch - Vocalist for Gothic Rock Band The Sisters of Mercy
- Joe Elliot - Lead vocalist of Def Leppard
- Melissa Etheridge - had a femullet when starting out career in late 1980's.
- Noel Fielding - British comedian
- Mel Gibson - Wore a mullet during the late 1980s while starring in the Lethal Weapon series.
- Lawrence Gowan - Had one on the cover of the album A Criminal Mind
- David Hasselhoff - star of Baywatch and Knight Rider
- Jeff Healey - Blind guitar player and vocalist for Jeff Healey Band
- James Hetfield - lead singer and rhythm guitarist for Metallica. Many would see Hetfield's as the mullet that finally put an end to their acceptability. In 1995 his mullet was one of the most extreme mullets featured in the Beastie Boys' article, with very short top and sides, and perhaps without such a high profile proponent, the Beasties might never have been moved to write their article. His cutting of his mullet in 1996 was taken by many fans as a sign that he had sold out.
- hide - Japanese musician and former member of the J-Rock bands X Japan, Zilch and Hide with Spread Beaver.
- John Holmes - porn actor
- Milla Jovovich - Female model, actress, singer; had a short femullet at one time
- Toby Keith - Country singer who had a mullet from the '80s to the '90s
- Gérard Klein - French actor. Wore a mullet in the movie Diesel that is sometimes used as mockery against him.
- Chad Kroeger - Singer for Nickelback. Sports a stylish "Canadian Passport".
- Gunter Levi - Swedish pop musician
- Richard Marx - singer-songwriter
- Paul McCartney - Singer and composer; wore a mullet episodically during the 1970's, 80s and early 90s 
- Dennis Miller - He had one through most of the '90s until he grew a beard
- Miyavi - Japanese Rock Musician and former member of the J-Rock band Dué le Quartz
- Chuck Norris - actor most famous for his roles in action movies and in the sitcom Walker: Texas Ranger
- Karen O - lead singer of Yeah Yeah Yeahs
- Rosie O'Donnell - had a femullet during early stand-up career in mid to late 1980's.
- Steve Perry - former lead singer of the pop-rock band Journey
- Brad Pitt - American actor
- Keith Richards - spent the Rolling Stones' peak years in a mullet.
- Kurt Russell - actor and frequent collaborator with John Carpenter in the 1980s
- Bon Scott - former lead singer of Australian hard rock band AC/DC, had a mullet during the mid-1970s
- Jerry Seinfeld - reruns every night
- Pat Sharp - Presenter on children's television in the United Kingdom (Cut off his mullet in the '90s)
- Adrian Smith - guitarist of Iron Maiden
- John Stamos - star of Full House
- Sting - singer and frontman of The Police who had mullet episodically during the 1980s and early 1990s.
- Keith York - drummer and stunt man
- Kiefer Sutherland - star of films such as The Lost Boys and A Time to Kill
- Devin Townsend - frontman of Strapping Young Lad has a variant called a skullet
- Tony Blair - wore one in the late 1980s
- Kim Clement - TBN personality
- Steve Hoffman - audio engineer
- James K. Polk - U.S. President in the 1840s. Appears with a clearly defined mullet in most photographs
- Peter Stringfellow - aging London nightclub owner
- Dane Dagenais - hippie activist from the 1970's
- Vince Noir from The Mighty Boosh
- Joe Dirt, as played by David Spade in the self-titled movie
- MacGyver as played by Richard Dean Anderson
- Solid Snake from the popular video game series Metal Gear Solid; voiced by David Hayter
- Red Sonja as played by Brigitte Nielsen
- Motor Ed from Kim Possible
- James Dalton from Road House
- Snake from The Simpsons
- Nightwing from DC comics
- Wayne Campbell from Wayne's World
- Dark Danny/Phantom from Danny Phantom
- Trevor from Trailer Park Boys
- Brock Sampson from The Venture Bros.
- Richard Ames from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty.
- Captain Planet from Captain Planet and the Planeteers and The New Adventures of Captain Planet
- Plague of the Mullet - Exploring the hidden world of the mullet
- Mulletlovers - "the oldest mullet site on the internet" (apparently)
- Fiese Scheitel - mullets of the teutonic order
- Rate My Mullet - mullet rating
- Mulletsgalore - Extensive collection of mullet classifications
- Mullet Junky - A site dedicated to the Mullet, (pronounced Mull-ay by those in denial) and related hair styles - including the rats tail, infantullet, femullets, mullatinos and skullet
- Short Mullet Documentary - 3:27 Spoof