Perhaps the most quintessential of “extreme” haircuts, the rebel mohawk is nothing without the skillful addition of a good spiking glue. The addition of glue to this hairstyle is essential for the classic stand-up effect, but the application can be tricky, particularly for a first-timer. A proper choice of glue, combined with knowing just when and how to apply and comb, will help you get the right mohawk on the first try.

Things You'll Need

Choose a glue for your hair. The best choice is a hair glue, especially if it’s made for the purpose of spiking (these are available at most “big box” stores in the hair care section). However, you can use other non-toxic glues, provided that they are water-soluble (otherwise, you won’t be able to wash them out), such as a school glue. A gel glue will be a better choice than a white glue, since the latter may leave an effect that is somewhat opaque.

Thoroughly shampoo, condition and rinse your hair. Conditioning is especially useful because it will help you apply the glue evenly without your hair sticking to your fingers as much in the process.

Dry your hair partially. Wring and towel rub it until it is damp, but no longer dripping. If you want the “wet” look with your mohawk, go no further, but if you want a dryer look, blow-dry your hair until it is almost fully dry but still slightly damp.

Apply glue to your mohawk. Exactly how much you will need will depend on the strength of your glue and the size of your mohawk, but as a rule, use a generous amount. Also, use more if your hair is wet, as the water will dilute the glue. You will want each strand of your hair to be fully coating from root to tip.

Spike your mohawk. Start using your fingers, then refine the shape using a hair pick. Comb from the side of the spike, then continually re-comb and reshape as the hair dries. It will droop, initially, and it needs to be repeatedly encouraged to keep its standing-up shape.

Stand your mohawk up by blow-drying it as you spike it. If your spike is particularly high, you may want to spend some of the time bent at the waist so that gravity will pull the hair straight out from your head.

Catch any loose strands of hair that dry away from the main spike by spraying them water, then pressing them against the spike shape. This will re-activate the glue.