Over the next week, we’re going to be squaring 32 of the all-time greatest boy band hair cuts—individual members of boy bands that is, with some groups having multiple eligible members (and one or two members having multiple eligible haircuts)—off against one another, with the goal of crowning the greatest boy band haircut of all time. From Davy Jones of The Monkees’ Proto-Bieber ‘do to Justin Timberlake’s stringy Ramen-noodle look from his ‘N Sync days to Harry Styles of One Direction’s soon-to-be-iconic swoop, haircuts from all eras of boy bands are in play.
Our first round saw a great number of lower-seeded upsets, launching today’s biggest stars over classic and cult coiffure role models alike—so much for our strange fascination with Chris Kirkpatrick’s skunk nest. A total of two Number One seeds fell to the bracket game floor, just like the strands of their once-fabled hairstyles did many years ago.
Next up: Round Two of The Pretty/Girly Region, where heartthrobs of the 21st century aim to take down their ’90s predecessors and the man who may have started it all, plus the Too Much Hair Region, where not one but two British dreamboats go head-to-head. As we embark on Round Two, decisions will only get more difficult—and more fun—so be sure to check back for our remaining regions later today and keep up the vote. Examine the matchups below, and then vote in the polls underneath to decide who you want to advance to the next round. It’s the first-ever Great Boy Band Hair-Off—forget all the camaraderie and chemistry that usually defines the boy band experience. This March, there can be only one.
The Band: The Moffatts (“Bang Bang Boom,” “I’ll Be There For You“)
The Era: Late ’90s / Early ’00s
The Hair: Like Wiley Wiggins in Dazed and Confused, but even longer and even prettier (and more Canadian!). Even Taylor Hanson had to be a little jealous of Bob Moffatt’s flowing locks.
The Band: Jonas Brothers (“Burnin’ Up,” “S.O.S.“)
The Era: Mid-Late ’00s
The Hair: A flat-iron job with spiky ends that makes him look a little like an anime character. Unsurprisingly, by the time of the Adult Solo Album, Joe had chopped nearly all of it off.
The Band: The Monkees (“Daydream Believer,” “I’m a Believer“)
The Era: Mid-late 60s
The Hair: A shiny, floppy mop of a haircut that sent hearts a-flutter in the age of Flower Power. About 40 years later, another male teen heartthrob—this one from north of the border rather than across the pond—would achieve similar results with a similar ‘do.
The Band: Hanson (“MMMBop,” “Where’s The Love“)
The Era: Late ’90s – present. The band has released a handful of albums in the 21st century, but hindsight led the eldest brother to pick up a pair of scissors.
The Hair: Shoulder-length, thick, and frizz-prone. Not many women can pull off a middle part, let alone pubescent teenage boys with braces.
The Band: Mindless Behavior (“Mrs. Right,” “My Girl“)
The Era: ’10s
The Hair: A huge afro that sometimes gets parted in the middle, when he can see out from underneath it all. As the MB frontman, his hair helps reinforce the band’s stance on a timeless issue: bigger really is better.
The Band: One Direction (“One Thing,” “What Makes You Beautiful“)
The Era: ’10s
The Hair Since debuting on The X Factor, Harry’s hair has gotten so big, we wouldn’t be surprised if some of their hit records are hanging out underneath his tresses. With hair exploding from all sides of the head, Harry adds just the right amount of unwashed swag to remain attractive. Known to shake it out on more than one occasion, fans should no longer feel strange about collecting strands of hair—it’s simply too easy!
The Band: The Wanted (“Glad You Came,” “Gold Forever“)
The Era: ’10s
The Hair: Borrowing from his fellow Brit, Nathan is partial to the swoop across the right side of his face. Since The Wanted has hit it big in the U.S., he’s managed to tease his hair to unthinkable volume, resulting in a mop that looks way too big for his fragile 18-year-old frame.