Alongside a stellar wardrobe, there's a vital reason why Bradley Cooper remains one of the decade's most stylish men. It’s his grooming regime. The actor has pulled off pretty much every hairstyle, from a crew cut to a messy shoulder length to a tight perm (and, yes, it worked).
Cooper's greatest grooming moment? That oh-so-cool, swept-back do, elegantly brushed and falling just below the nape of his neck. We wouldn't mind giving that look a go, so as part of our brand-new Hair Shrink column, we've enlisted the help of hairstylist Joe Mills (of Joe & Co) to find out how to achieve it...
Hi, Hair Shrink,
I love Bradley Cooper's swept-back do. It's very country and western singer-cum-Seventies p*rn star. How do I get it? What do I ask for and how do I style it?
Bradley Cooper's swept-back do actually looks very undone, so the key to achieving this look is through natural movement and texture. Ideally, you need medium to heavy thick hair with a slight wave. As for length? Grow your hair to at least four to five inches on the top and back and a couple of inches longer on the sides.
You don't want to style this too heavily. Ask your barber for a basic layered cut, keeping as much length as needed. They'll need to add texture to it by either point cutting or cutting into it (reference this and they'll understand what you mean). It's also important to make sure the hairline is tidied up before styling.
This look has been achieved through a blow-dry, so be prepared to put a little effort in. The key to Cooper's grooming nonchalance is the products. On clean, damp hair, spray five to six pumps of a texture spray (Kevin Murphy’s Anti Gravity Spray is a great choice) and then, using a vent brush, blow-dry your hair back from your face. This allows the air to get through the hair and will create a naturally swept-back effect.
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Don’t worry to much about the back, as this needs to dry more naturally. Once the top is dry to the touch, shift your dryer to a low speed setting. Then, use your fingers (not the brush), dry and style the back and side. It just needs to be smoothed down a little. Once dry, finish off the look with a styling cream – I recommend Baxter Of California’s Cream Pomade. Take a two pence piece-sized amount of this, rub it into your hands and then through all of your hair.
To note: if your hair is very thick you'll probably need to add some more.
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With the right length and textured cut, you really don't need to use too much product to achieve Cooper's hairstyle here. The key is for it to look lived in – so once you've finished prepping, be sure to have some fun.