German Language Blog

The German Mullet and Other Hairstyles Posted by on Apr 18, 2016 in Language


der Friseur – the hairdresser’s. Herren – men. Damen – women. Photo by station_nord on under a CC license (CC BY-ND 2.0)

In my quest to bring you the best German words out there I recently found a great one related to Haare – hair. Someone once said to me that the best kind of business to have is either a coffee shop or a hairdresser’s, because no matter how times change, people will always want coffee and haircuts! With that in mind, I figured a little vocabulary list on hair was in order!


schneiden – to cut

waschen – to wash

föhnen – to blowdry (not to be confused with the verb blasen – to blow! You do not want to say this to your hairdresser!)

kämmen – to comb

bürsten – to brush

nachschneiden – to trim

färben – to colour/dye

rasieren – to shave


die Bürste – hairbrush. Photo by kmdoncaster on under a CC license (CC BY 2.0)



die Lockenwickler – curlers (rollers)

der Lockenstab – curling tong

das Glätteisen – hair straightener

die Haarspange – hairclip

das Haarband – hairband

das Haarspray – hairspray

der Kamm – comb

die Bürste – brush

*GOOD TO KNOW: While in English we say hair rather than hairs (unless we are talking about individual hairs, such as ‘putting hairs on our chest’, for instance), in German it is acceptable a lot of the time to say either das Haar or die Haare. The plural form (die Haare) is more commonly used, but both are correct. So this sentence: Sie hat lockiges Haar (She has curly hair – using the singular form) is just as acceptable as this sentence: Sie hat lockige Haare (She has curly hair – using the plural form). The difference is that in English we would never say ‘She has curly hairs’, so it can be confusing to hear both being used in German!*

curly hair

lockige Haare (or: lockiges Haar!) Photo by hourig94 on under a CC license (CC BY 2.0)



lockig – curly

glatt – straight

kraus/gekräuselt – frizzy

lang – long

kurz – short

gefärbt – dyed

gebleicht – bleached

dick – thick

dünn – thin




der Haarspliss – split ends

die Wurzeln – roots

der Scheitel – hair parting

der Pony – fringe (not to be confused with the word for ponytail below!)


You're a good cop, Velez

die Dauerwelle – perm. Photo by dno1967b on under a CC license (CC BY 2.0)



die Dauerwelle – perm (literally ‘lasting wave’)

der Pferdeschwanz – ponytail (literally ‘horse’s tail’)

der Zopf – plait/braid

der Dutt – bun

die Glatze – shaved/bald head
der Glatzkopf – shaved/bald head, or referring to the person who has a shaved head (also sometimes called der Kahlkopf)

der Pagenkopf – bob (The English ‘Bob’ is also in use)

die Perücke – wig

der Rattenschwanz – A long strand of hair amongst a short haircut, usually running down the back of the neck. Literally, ‘rat’s tail‘.


I hope you’ve found this vocabulary list useful and interesting! To finish, what is that quirky word that inspired this post? It’s the German word for a mullet, which is Vokuhila. What’s this word all about? Vokuhila is short for Vorne kurz, hinten lang – short at the front, long at the back. Vo-ku-hi-la. 🙂

Mr. Mullet

Vokuhila! Photo by ninavizz on under a CC license (CC BY-ND 2.0)



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About the Author: Constanze

Servus! I'm Constanze and I live in the UK. I'm half English and half German, and have been writing about German language and culture on this blog since 2014. I am also a fitness instructor & personal trainer.


  1. Judy Haran:

    Just out of curiosity, is there a name for that weird hairstyle you see on photos of Nazi leaders, which is half shaved (the lower half) and half “short” (the top half)? I have never seen anyone in real life with this hairstyle. What was it called? (You can see it on all closeups of Himmler, for example.)

  2. auslk:

    If you need to borrow a hand blow dryer from the hotel, what would say in German to the receptionist when requesting one?

    • Constanze:

      @auslk Simply ask for a Haartrockner (der) or a Föhn (der) – both words for hair dryer!

  3. Max Spring:

    Two minor typos:

    “razieren” –> “rasieren”
    “dunn” –> “dünn”