|Sideburn enthusiast, Englebert Humperdink|
Sideburns suggest virility but also, if in the right configuration, elegance - they can be employed to slim down a face, reflect an era or style and just generally conjure a particular image that the wearer might be desirous of getting across. With that in mind, let's explore some of the common sideburn affectations that have proved popular with the testosterone crowd....
|General Ambrose Burnside.|
The mutton chop look was very big in the 19th century - a period when sideburns were at their most ostentatious. According to Wikipedia, the term 'sideburns' is relatively new and a reversal of the old descriptive word burnsides, named after American Civil War General, Ambrose Burnside, who wore a particularly fine pair of mutton chops.
50s Teddy Boy/Rocker
Obvious sideburns and in fact, facial hair in general, went out of vogue in the 30s and 40s, apart from the odd pencil thin moustache. In the 50s and early 60s though, the sideburn was back with a vengeance, varying in size from half sideburns to to thickish, chin length numbers and mutton chops that were pointed inward toward the mouth..Sideburns were particularly popular with a certain ilk of Teddy Boy and Rockers, though the heavily stylised sideburns were not as obvious on the early Mods, who favoured a more boyish haircut, rather than a primped up pompadour that showed off the burns to full effect.
However, stylised mutton chops did enjoy another resurgence in the late 60s, when there was a penchant for ironic Victorian fashions and of course the Rocker/Teddy boy look has gained a new popularity with enthusiastic rockabilly fans.
|Late 60s mutton chops on Monkee, Mike Nesbitt|
Sideburns seemed to have been popular with 60s crooners in general and were also favoured by singers such as Tom Jones and Englebert Humperdink, who cultivated a kind of old world romantic look, matching their quaint Victorian facial hair with billowy white shirts and gold chains.
|British actor Clive Owen - subtle sideburns|