ESC students recently visited James who owns and runs the Boneless Barbershop to ask him about his experience with the vastly popular mullet hairstyle.

Eaglehawk residents first saw the Boneless Barber Shop in 2018 when it was located in Skip’s Skateboard Shop. The main barber and owner, James worked away at building up his clientele and occasionally James’ wife Vanessa helped out. The current shop opened and then slowly expanded to incorporate six barbers, a barista, and a specialty hair salon at the back that is Vanessa’s creation. Vanessa calls her creation The Mullet Mama and has much joy in creating unique haircuts for a mainly feminine clientele.

Vanessa had a mullet herself before she created her unique salon, and her idea developed from this. Her vision was to create out of the box haircuts instead of the standard long haircuts, and she wanted to take a more creative approach with the clippers and use wilder colours.

Vanessa has worked in salons since she was about 15 and over the past two years has been working as a barber. The mix between her years of experience in general hairdressing and a few years doing clipper work has resulted in the two styles mixing to create something that’s unique for Bendigo.

What is a mullet? A mullet essentially is long back, short sides with varying length in the top. James describes it as “standard business up front and a party in the back. So from the front it looks like a regular everyday sort of haircut and then the back is long and luscious and ridiculous. So it’s all very well maintained in the front and just wild out the back”. To get the effect, James uses a lot of razors and thinning scissors to create texture. A mullet could take anywhere from five minutes to an hour and a half to create depending on how the client wants it.

“AFL players have had some of the best moments of all time, and they still to this day, have some of the most Impressive moments going. I think they definitely dictate the trend. Mullets are coming back in a big way”.

James, having worked previously in North Queensland, believes that the popularity of the mullet is much stronger in Victoria than other states and this is most likely due to the AFL players sporting the look. “Once the AFL players started getting mullets a lot of teenagers start doing it and I think it’s a big Victorian cultural thing.”

Where did it originate from? James had a good theory. Back in the day the hot sun would be beating down on your neck if you were working outside. The idea may have been for neck protection so that the long hair protected your neck against the Australian sun and the wind. “It’s a strategic haircut that keeps the hair from going in your face but then you can also have long hair to protect your neck.”

James’ advice if you’re considering a mullet: “Don’t follow the crowds and get a traditional mullet – do something weird with it, be creative with the haircut”.

fun facts

Australians like the mullet because “we consider ourselves to be larrikins” It is one of Australia’s most iconic haircuts.

ESC students: why did you get a mullet?


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