As sharp and crisp as the blades that cut them, shape-ups frame faces, and accentuate masterful fades. Of course, they’re best executed at the barbershop free hand with rotary motor clippers – even the seasoned and skilled seldom try this at home. Born out of the 1980s, as Hip Hop emerged, so too did artists like Big Daddy Kane and Rakin who were godfathers of the shape-up. And the style seduced Grace Jones too, who arrestingly, wore one on her 1980 Leatherette album cover.
The precision silhouette looks best immediately after the trimmer has touched it, meaning most go for touch ups once a week. Indeed, shape-ups are not for, well, casual groomers. If you are looking to try it at home, remember, don’t worry about the sharpness on the first round – simply concentrate on the shape. Otherwise you might end up taking off too much – to the point of no return.