Experience: I’ve got the best mullet in the United States |

I started growing my hair out in 2018, and first decided to cut it into a mullet as a joke. My stepbrother had got me tickets to the Nascar Daytona 500, where lots of mullets can be spotted, so I grew one just for the race.

It was so well-received that I ended up keeping it. Before then, I’d always had the same style: a military cut with a fade. Although my friends would tell me I was one of a kind, I looked just like everybody else. The mullet gave me that standout quality I was looking for.

The mullet became my baby, but when my girlfriend moved from New York City to my small town of Stillwater in upstate New York in 2019, she asked me to cut it. She hated my mullet. She pointed out that she had changed her whole life for me and I didn’t even want to cut my hair, so in the end I relented.

As time went on, I really missed that mullet and felt like a part of me had gone. When I proposed in 2020, I began to grow out my hair again. I’d trim it just on the sides every couple of days, hoping my girlfriend wouldn’t notice. I called it the “subtle mullet”, but she was on to me straight away. After I pleaded my case, she became cool with it. A year later, we got married in New York.

Friends started tagging me in USA Mullet Championships events on Facebook. There were live contests scheduled across various cities, so I applied for one in Indiana. I wasn’t selected, as they had too many people, so I entered online. After several rounds of voting, 600 online entrants were narrowed down to 14. They would then be joined by finalists from live events – as well as judges’s picks and the former champion – in the crowning “mane event”.

I wasn’t sure about entering as I’m not a good loser and was feeling sore about not getting picked to compete in Indiana. My wife ended up entering me with a selection of pictures – one was from a wedding we’d been to, where my hair was blowing in the wind. I thought it was a terrible photo, as my hair looked really greasy, but I got through.

There were five days of voting. Last year’s winner had racked up 17,000 votes, so I didn’t have high hopes. Even though I’m pretty popular in my small town, I didn’t think I’d get that many votes.

But after the first day, I was in second place and began to believe I had a shot. I got on the local radio stations, and news outlets were calling me up. By day three, I’d soared into first place, and on day five – which happened to be my birthday – I was announced as the winner on the Today show. I’d become the 2022 USA mullet champion.

It’s been surreal winning something that cool. It’s silly because it’s a mullet contest, but all those people supporting me meant a lot. I won $2,500 and a trophy.

My wife got me a boxing championship-style belt for Christmas; it’s got the name of my mullet, The Lord’s Drapes, on it. I donated my winnings to my local church’s fundraiser to expand the parking lot. I joked that I’d like a nice spot reserved for the mullet champ, but I haven’t had that wish granted yet.

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I get recognised as the “mullet guy”, and people sometimes ask for advice on how to grow their own. I’d say you don’t choose the mullet, the mullet chooses you. Mullets have had some bad press, but now that I have one I think they’re the best thing in the world. I’m a member of a Mullet That Changed My Life Facebook group and it’s a really nice community.

With a mullet, you get the best of a short haircut and a long one too. It’s a style that demands confidence.

I go to the same local barber shop that I’ve been going to for the last decade to get my mullet cut. I used to go every two to four weeks, but since winning I’ve had so many media obligations that I have to go more often. I haven’t had to pay for a haircut since winning.

My haircare routine is pretty low maintenance: I wash it once or twice a week with hot water and a regular shampoo. Everyone has different opinions on mullets and what counts as one. I just like a well-kept front: it’s business in the front and party at the back. I think if you stick to those rules, you’re all right.

As told to Amy Sedghi

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