Guys and Gals, comb-overs for follicly challenged people.

Addressing the members of both (only 2?) sexes.

To comb-over or not to comb-over, that is the question.

Why do guys do it?

What do the gals think of them?

If I had to choose, I would cut it short or go bald.
combover cite

bald is better

There is only one acceptable solution to going bald:
Get a razor. All else is self-delusional.

I’m utterly baffled as to how anybody could think that a combover is a good idea!

Does the combover develop over time, or is it a conscious decision?

Do these people think that they’re fooling anybody?

And once somebody is “outed” as having a combover, how can they keep on doing it?

As for “what do gals think?” Trying to hide baldness is way worse than any baldness could ever be.

I don’t find them attractive at all, but if the person doing it thinks it makes him look better, it’s none of my business. I’d try to discourage my husband from combing over if he was so inclined, but if it’s that important to him, then it’s not worth making a big deal over it.

It’s just hair, wispy or otherwise…

No, no, no to combovers!!!

My high school principal had a very long and dramatic one, every time we had an outside assembly the wind would pick it up and it looked like long ribbons down his back. Shudder.

Oh, and for your stats, I am female.

I said this once to a friend of mine who was going bald. His answer: “Brave words, Mr. No-Male-Pattern-Baldness.”


Definitely not.


Don’t even go there.

Bald is much better… God only made a few perfect heads and on the rest he put hair…

No comb-overs, please.

I am bald. I do not try a combover - I’d have to let it grow longer than Crystal Gayle. (I’m REAL bald) There is a difference between those who just comb what’s left, with no real attempt to conceal, and those who desperately try to convince others (themselves?) they are not going bald. The latter look like fools. Being bald is just not that big a thing. I rather have hair, but rather be bald with normal blood pressure than hairy and hypertensive, say. I can always buy hair.

That said, someone in this thread advised me to shave what little I have…[sub]maybe someday[/sub]

I like bald men just fine. Combovers are not attractive, IMO.


Combover = coverup (ugly, transparent one).

Shave it down and embrace your baldness.

As one who is follicly challenged (full male pattern baldness since about 22 or so), I can answer why guys comb over in one word: denial. I combed over for about 2 years or so. It started out as no big deal: a little ebbing of the ol’ hair line, nothing moving over the part about 1/8 of an inch couldn’t take care of. Nobody the wiser.

After a while, hairspray became necessary to preserve the comb over. No big deal; this was the '70’s. Everyone used hairspray.

Later, though, I found myself walking into the wind with my head turned to make sure the part was aimed at the wind. There’s nothing more humiliating that having your comb-over fly up like a loose car hood.

Swimming was OK, but I made sure that my hair was pushed forward before I surfaced: kind of a wet comb-over, but a comb-over nonetheless.

After a while, the comb-over required more and more hair spray to maintain the topiary effect I was going for; that is, using the minimal number of hairs to effect the maximum amount of coverage. And we’re talking major laquer-type hairspray, hard as a rock. It was still the big-hair '70’s, and nobody the wiser.

The funny thing is: This didn’t seem strange at the time. To me, no one noticed that it was a comb over, but in retrospect, I’m sure everyone noticed it, and probably snickered about it. I don’t know what happened, but I finally reached a point where, in my mind, the comb-over looked worse than the baldness. And I was bald. Phil Silvers bald.

I still remember the day I told the barber to forget the comb over and just give me a regular hair cut. For a week, I never felt so self-conscious in my life. But no one pointed, children didn’t cry. I had finally come to terms with my baldness.

“Hi, my name is PoorYorick, and I’m a baldy.”

True story, though

I am somewhat hirsute deficient and I have discovered the wonders of cutting it very short (#3 guard on the poodle clippers).

Its no-fuss, no-muss and easier care for than shaven.

My wife thinks it lessens the appearance of baldness, too. Less contrast, I guess, between the hair & the scalp.


No one has mentioned the third option… toupee’s. Are they worse than combovers?

Oh wow. I just saw Rudy Giuliani on Conan and he’s lost the comb-over! Yay! In typical Rudy fashion, he openly discussed it. He said that Judy Nathan talked him into it, and he’s happy with it. He looks 100 times better now, and he looks less bald than he used to, because the comb-over isn’t drawing attention to his baldness.

PoorYorick: Thanks for the story. Sheds some light on the phenomenon. I wish more comboverers (or ex-comboverers) would come clean.

vl_mungo: A bad toupee is worse than a comb-over, IMHO. It’s more noticeable. A good toupee, on the other hand, isn’t noticeable. It just looks like hair. A comb-over can never look like hair.

We have two managers in our office who are definitely losing their hair big-time, and they’re only in their twenties. One is only 23, I think. He’s chosen to cut it down to about a quarter-inch. The other has gone completely shaved, as he has a classic Ceasar look already.

Good moves on their parts.

Like my father, I have a receding hairline (mine isn’t going as quickly as his did though) - he used to comb over, until one day at the barber’s, the (rather stereotypically camp) hairdresser exclaimed “Ah, I see we are a master in the art of disguise!” - from that day on, he lost the combover, keeping it all fairly short, which suits him.

Combovers are insidious; nobody ever goes to bed at night with a full head of thick hair and wakes in the morning looking like Max Wall; it happens gradually - each day is only a little more combed over then the previous and then imperceptibly so. The conscious decision to suddenly start to comb long lank strands of hair across a shining pink dome is never actually taken.

No to Comb-overs and Toupees.

I like hair, but if your going bald don’t be fake or vain trying to cover-up, go with the baldness, I find a bald guy sexy - Vin Diesel, Telly Salvalas, Ving Rhames, come to mind.

But what if I - I mean, what balding people combed it over really carefully, so that the whole thin area were covered? And then glued it down? And then used that spray-on stuff? Surely then no one could tell. Right?

Ooh - what if they grew their hair really really long - we’re talking like two feet long - right at the edge of the bald spot, and then spiralled it around for total coverage? No one would be the wiser and their dignity would be preserved!

When I went to job interview a few years back, my friend (who was already working there) told me: “I have to warn you about the boss’s combover. You won’t believe it when you see it, but don’t make any comments about it!” I shrugged off his advice; I’d seen plenty of combovers before, so how bad could his be? Of course I’d keep my cool.

The day of the interview, I went in, steeled for whatever horrors might await. A man in his late 30’s came over, and as he sat down, I looked at his head: he was thinning on top and had a moderate barcode-pattern going. “Hell,” I thought, “I was supposed to freak out at that? My friend must have a real hang-up about combovers.”

It was at that point that the man said “Oh, the president’s just gotten in, you should talk with him.”

The door opened, and in walked a little man wearing a tiny knit cap on his head. He took it off, and I almost screamed.

It looked like a god-damn snake had just jumped out of his ear. His combover had unrolled itself all the way down to his elbow, and was now dangling there like some mutant appendage. After taking off his coat, he nonchalantly lifted the end over his head and proceeded to swirl it around until it had made a little pile covering his scalp.
I don’t exactly recall what we talked about during the interview, because the entire time the only thing I could think was “dontlookdontlookdontlookdontlookdontlookohgoddontlookdontlookohshitilookeddontlookdontlookdontlookdontlookdontlook.” Somehow, I managed to get the job.

I saw him again a little while ago, and he’d finally cut it off and gone for a natural bald look. He looks infinitely better.

To be fair, my my Mother’s second husband, when I first met him, appeared to have a full head of hair, it was only when we went swimming together…he dived into the water and never came back up; there was just this bald guy with huge long bushy lengths of hair covering his ears…

He would spend half an hour in the bathroom every morning, combing and fixing with hairspray; really, this was a combover that actually worked (but not in all weathers).