A hairstyle could easily make or break a man. For anime characters, the hairstyle is especially important in bringing out the character's overall image and personality. For men and their anime counterparts, long hair could be hard to pull off. They could slip into looking too unkempt or overburdened by their hair. Nonetheless, some brave souls have proclaimed to the anime gods, "Long hair is for men too!"
A man brazenly stares into the future as his hair wafts in the wind. Strands of glory fly behind a young man in action, like the tail of a comet. Godlike silk settles to embrace a woman the man cradles in his arms. Hair makes the scene, so here are 10 anime men and their gorgeous long hair.
10. Makishima Yusuke from Yowamushi Pedal
- Episodes: 62
- Aired: Oct. 2013 – Mar. 2015
Makishima Yusuke is a senior at Sohoku High School, and a member of the school’s competitive cycling team, which is considered to be a powerhouse in the sport. This year, Sohoku is blessed with three unusually talented freshmen. Makishima and two other seniors make up a senpai dream team, as they faithfully guide the freshmen to pedaling success, even though one of the freshmen, Onoda Sakamichi, is a complete novice to the sport.
Makishima has long green hair with red highlights, one part of his unique fashion sense that helps him stand out of any crowd, but honestly, many find his appearance creepy. When he uses a climbing technique called dancing, he sways heavily on his bicycle with his exceptionally long limbs with his long hair pooling behind him, he appears to be cutting through a fast-paced stream. His unique physical features combined with excellent cycling ability gained him the nickname and title of “Peak Spider.” Add in the green hair, Makishima is easily one of the most unique senpais in any sport anime.
9. Kuga Kyosuke from Prince of Stride: Alternative
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: Jan. 2016 – present
Kuga Kyosuke is a mysterious senior at Honan Academy in this new sports anime from Madhouse, Prince of Stride: Alternative. Styled much like the for-girls sports anime Free!, Prince of Stride follows a high school team in the fictional sport of stride, a parkour relay race with teams of five runners. Before starting his senior year, Kyosuke quit the team for unknown reasons, but still is keenly interested in how his younger teammates are developing. Many are hoping and praying for his return to the sport to bring victory back to Honan Academy.
Kyosuke and his striking white hair appear in the very first scenes of the anime, as he and another teammate demonstrate a beautifully perfect relay hand off, called a "relation" in the show. For good reason, the video was uploaded to the internet, where a young girl witnesses the amazing sight and enrolls in Honan to join the team. Honestly, we're surprised more girls didn't go to Honan for the exact same reason. So far, we’ve only caught glimpses of Kyosuke with his hair hanging loose and free, but we hope to see Kyosuke and his white ponytail doing some amazing parkour later in the show!
8. Daryuan from The Heroic Legend of Arslan (Arslan Senki)
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: Apr. 2015 – Jul. 2015
Daryun is one of the main characters of the action, adventure anime The Heroic Legend of Arslan (Arslan Senki). Just before the fall of their kingdom, Daryun was a military officer put in charge of protecting the young Prince Arslan. Now, Daryun, the young prince, and a few other companions are trying to regain their lost country. Daryun is often considered to be the strongest warrior of the time with a strong sense of morality. He has all the makings of a hero and is a perfect partner for a man that is destined to be a king.
Daryun has undying loyalty and is a stoic and stern fighter, and he has a hairstyle to match! Daryun keeps his long black hair mostly out of the way and neatly tied in a low ponytail, but we can see it whipping back and forth behind him during action sequences or flying softly in the wind during calmer moments of the show, effortlessly coinciding with the epic soundtrack of Arslan. Daryun doesn’t really change up his hairstyle, but that steadfast nature is what pulls fans to like this character.
7. Katsura Kotaro from Gintama
- Episodes: 201
- Aired: Apr. 2006 – Mar. 2010
In an alternate universe of feudal Japan where aliens have invaded earth and have prohibited the use of swords to prevent a samurai rebellion. Katsura Kotaro is a former comrade of Gintoki Sakata, as they fought together against the alien invasion. Both are capable samurai, but Katsura lives a life on the run as a wanted terrorist, while Gintoki and his crew take odd jobs in order to make a living under the new law of the land. Although they walk different paths, they often run into each other throughout this comedic series.
Katsura has a head of hair that would easily make any woman jealous, but he still manages to still look plenty masculine, especially with sword in hand. Generally, the swordsman is serious about his convictions and is very much a prototypical samurai, complete with natural black hair. While other characters in Gintama usually have more extreme hairstyles, Katsura remains relatively realistic in terms of appearance and is a subtle reminder that this fantasy is loosely based on history. Nonetheless, his serious image is often humorously contradicted by his sheer randomness, stubbornness, and ignorance in this samurai parody anime.
6. Kuchiki Byakuya from Bleach
- Episodes: 366
- Aired: Oct. 2004 – Mar. 2012
In the ever-popular, supernatural, action anime Bleach, Kuchiki Byakuya is a shinigami (soul reaper), a spiritual being who leads the dead to the afterlife and defeat violent spiritual creatures called Hollows. Byakuya, however, is no ordinary shinigami. He is captain of the 6th Division of the Gotei 13, the militaristic body that trains and organizes the shinigami. As such, Byakuya is highly skilled in swordsmanship and kido and possesses intense spiritual energy.
Byakuya is the older brother of Kuchiki Rukia and head of the Kuchiki Family, one of four noble families in the land of the afterlife. As a marker of his nobility, he dons headpieces, called kenseikan, on the top and right side of his head. Not only does this style choice portray his social status in the afterlife, it also looks pretty cool by splitting his long bangs across his face and creating a daring asymmetrical look. There are many swordsmen with long black hair in Japanese anime, but Byakuya is easy to identify with this headpieces and looks amazing when releases his special abilities.
5. Worick Arcangelo from Gangsta.
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: Jul. 2015 – Sept. 2015
Worick Arcangelo and Nicolas Brown work as a pair of “handymen” who take care of difficult jobs in a city ruled by organized crime in the violent action drama Gangsta. Nicolas is very much the brawn of the operation, so that would make Worick the brain, although the two are generally making decisions on the fly. Don’t let his carefree attitude confuse you though. Worick has an incredible superhuman memory that makes him indispensible to the police and various crime organizations. Although the pair operate freelance without affiliations, a storm is brewing in their city, and they’re caught right in the middle of it.
The best way to describe Worick’s hair would be “pretty but messy.” That’s also the best way to describe our eye-patched protagonist as a man. Worick is very much a pretty boy that is a little rough around the edges, with a past as hard as the streets he grew up on. His boyish looks helped him scrape by in his younger years, but a life in harsh town is written all over his face. The history that led to Worick becoming this pretty but messy guy is the shining, heart-breaking gem of this anime’s plotline that you don’t want to miss.
4. Inuyasha from InuYasha
- Episodes: 167
- Aired: Oct. 2000 – Sept. 2004
Inuyasha is the half-demon, half-man protagonist of the action, adventure anime that shares his name. Inuyasha meets Kagome, a girl from modern times who is dragged 500 years into the past to feudal Japan along with a wish-granting jewel called the Shikon Jewel. Shortly after arriving in the past, the jewel shatters, and the two start a quest to retrieve all the jewel shards to have their wishes granted.
Upon their initial encounter, Kagome is intrigued by Inuyasha’s dog ears popping out from his long silver hair. The odd animal ears and hair color are inherited from his powerful demon-dog father, but when Inuyasha slips into human form, the ears disappear and the hair turns to a natural black color, serving as a litmus test for how human Inuyasha is at any point in time. Now, long after the initial run of the anime, the animal ear and long silver hair pairing represent Inuyasha in anime fandom. Even when fox-demon Tomoe from Kamisama Kiss (Kamisama Hajimemashita) occasionally appears with long hair, fans can’t help but reminisce about Inuyasha due to the striking hairstyle resemblance. Inuyasha, may your reign as king of animal ears and long hair continue to the end of time!
3. Murasakibara Atsushi from Kuroko's Basketball (Kuroko no Basket)
- Episodes: 75
- Aired: Apr. 2012 – Jun. 2015
Murasakibara Atsushi was a starter for one of best basketball teams in junior high school history. Often called the Generation of Miracles, this team produced five of the best players to ever set foot on a court in one miraculous year. After graduating from junior high, the team split up, and all of its regular members dispersed to different high schools. Now the best players in the nation are bitter rivals, but no one expects that their biggest challenge may come from an unknown team led by their former sixth man Kuroko, who garners little attention in basketball, but excels at passing.
Murasakibara is abnormally tall for his age and starts as center for Yosen High School. Murasakibara is also exceptionally lazy and dislikes doing anything except eating and playing basketball. This attitude is also reflected in his choice of hairstyle. Long hair on men is extremely rare in Kuroko’s Basketball, not surprisingly, because Japan’s high school basketball scene generally has an unwritten rule that hair should be kept short, but Murasakibara isn’t one to just follow pleasantries. He even just lets the hair hang in his face during a game, partially because he’s too lazy, and partially because he’s just too good at basketball. Nonetheless, when the going gets tough, Murasakibara will pull those purple locks into a ponytail, surprisingly transforming into a model-esque bishounen. When that happens, you know he’s serious.
2. Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Hagane no Renkinjutsushi)
- Episodes: 64
- Aired: Apr. 2009 – Jul. 2010
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is loved all over the world for its existential messages hidden in an action-packed and fun fantasy adventure. Edward Elric and his brother Alphonse are prodigies in alchemy, a fictional mix of science and magic that is also used as a weapon in combat. Tragic events in childhood lead to Alphonse's soul to be pulled from his body and attached to a suit of armor. Two go on a near-impossible quest to find the legendary philosopher's stone in order to return Alphonse to his body.
Throughout the series Ed's golden locks tied in a long braid become a part of his trademark style. Although many mistook his younger, armor-clad younger brother to be the world-famous alchemist, Ed became more well-known, and many could recognize him by his red overcoat and blond braid. Many characters in this anime have long hair, but Ed's hair well suits his youthful and slightly rebellious nature that has made him such a beloved character.
1. Himura Kenshin from Rurouni Kenshin (Samurai X)
- Episodes: 94
- Aired: Jan. 1996 – Sept. 1998
A legendary swordsman, Himura Kenshin is the feared assassin of the Meiji era, identified by a cross-shaped scar on his cheek and long red hair. This list simply would not be complete without the titular character of Rurouni Kenshin (Samurai X). Not only does Kenshin have superior swordsmanship, he also has a heart of gold while trying to help Japan maintain peace during a difficult transformation in the country's history.
Although during the revolution, Kenshin tied his hair into a high and tight ponytail of a swordsman, but in the timeline of Rurouni Kenshin, he keeps his hair pulled back into a low ponytail, accurately messy for his current status as a wanderer. Regardless, as a man who can move with godlike speed, his enemies may very well only see flashes of red before their demise. Considering many of his techniques are pulled off in less than a second, countless scenes just wouldn't be same without Kenshin's signature long hair adding drama to his every move.
LONG LIVE LONG-HAIRED LEADING MEN
We hope you enjoyed our list of the top ten heads of long hair and the men who accompany them. Hair is an integral part of character design, and long hair has surprising versatility in flawlessly matching a wide range of character types. This list shows many of the possibilities that long locks can bring to male characters. We love all the characters who have been improved by having long locks, but we’re equally excited for more long-haired characters to come!