mullet* (mu' lit) 1. any of a family of edible, spiny-rayed fishes found in fresh and salt waters and having a small mouth and feeble teeth, as the striped (or gray) mullet.
2. any haircut which the sides and top of the hair are significantly shorter than the back.

the origin of the term "mullet" has been traced back to the film "cool hand luke", starring paul newman (as luke, what are you drunk?). within this movie a phrase with the word: 'mulletheads'. was used, and thus: a legend is born.

*other terms for the hairstyle known to me and many others as the "mullet" include, but are not limited to:

ape drape, schlong (short+long), hockey hair, soccer rocker, sfelbie (SFLB=Short Front, Long Back), STLB (same idea) IROC cut, camaro cut, sho-lo, the Billie Ray, neckwarmer, mudflap, kentucky waterfall, Canadian Passport, 10-90 (changes in numbers proportional to the amount of hair on top and on bottom), El-Camino, shag, business in the front, party in the back, the safety cut, the Tennessee Tophat, etc.

(taken and tweeked from the creators of mulletsgalore)
Mullet aliases:

A friend of mine in the hair industry reported that modified mullets were all the rage at the recent Chicago Hair Show. All we can do now is pray.

Also, a great mullet site can be found at
The hairstyle certain people seem to all know and love to hate, can easily be identified by the long hair in back and short on the top and sides. It seems to be popular with - but not limited to - with the low income caucasian demographic, country fans, and lesbians.

Popular names for this hairstyle includes The Tennessee Waterfall, The Kentucky Flattop, The Wrestlemania and others.

Some people play a game based off of the old Slug Bug game, when someone spots a Mullet, they yell it out and hit another person. Bonus hits are in order if the subject is wearing certain clothes, or doing something particular funny at the time (such as arguing, fighting, chewing, etc).

However in todays society it may not command much respect to others to be seen wearing this hairstyle, it should be noted these people are probably aware of the source of ridicule it generates, but seem to wear it with pride anyway.
On a side note: The Swedish word for mullet is hockeyfrilla, which translates roughly into "ice hockey hairdo", probably due to it often being seen on hockey and bandy players in the mid-late eighties. The popular theory is that it is the only practical way you can have long hair and still fit in a hockey helmet.

Also known in parts of Europe as a "Czech haircut", and never quite went out of fashion in Germany and east Europe.

I was recently informed that in Germany that the mullet is known as Vo-Ku-Hi-La-Schnitt (Vorne kurz hinten lang).
This translates to: in the front short, behind long cut.
The mullet or vo-ku-hi-la-schnitt, was made fameous in Germany by the Bild-Zeitung, the major German tabloid newspaper. The Scorpions all had mullets. It is also considered, so I´m told by a reliable German source, that the vo-ku-hi-la-schnitt is only worn by blonde moron hairdressers.

thanks to hölleundhimmel for the German translation.

When they die, mullets spectacularly change colours. The dying mullet flashes patches of red ochre, and green. In Roman days, the host at a posh banquet would have a still-living mullet brought in a vase to table. When the water was removed from the vase, guests would watch the fish change colors as it gasped out its life. Pale in death, the mullet would be returned to the kitchen to be cooked.

The red mullet was almost extinguished in Ancient Times since the Romans were crazy about this fish. The red mullet only repopulated when it became too expensive because of its rarity: the common man couldn't afford it anymore, and the Romans lost interest.

In one of Roman historian Suetonius' writings, the mullet plays a funny role:

A few days after Tiberius came to Capri, a fisherman suddenly intruded on his solitude by presenting him with an enormous mullet, which he had lugged up the trackless cliffs at the rear of the island. Tiberius was so scared that he ordered his guards to rub the fisherman's face with the mullet. The scales skinned it raw, and the poor fellow shouted in his agony: "Thank heaven I did not bring Caesar that huge crab I also caught". Tiberius sent for the crab and had it used in the same way.
Suetonius, Tib. 60

Mul"let (?), n. [OE. molet, mulet, F. mulet, fr. L. mullus.]

1. Zool.

Any one of numerous fishes of the genus Mugil; -- called also gray mullets. They are found on the coasts of both continents, and are highly esteemed as food. Among the most valuable species are Mugil capito of Europe, and M. cephalus which occurs both on the European and American coasts.

2. Zool.

Any species of the genus Mullus, or family Mullidae; called also red mullet, and surmullet, esp. the plain surmullet (Mullus barbatus), and the striped surmullet (M. surmulletus) of Southern Europe. The former is the mullet of the Romans. It is noted for the brilliancy of its colors. See Surmullet.

French mullet. See Ladyfish (a).


© Webster 1913.

Mul"let, n. [F. molette.] Her.

A star, usually five pointed and pierced; -- when used as a difference it indicates the third son.


© Webster 1913.

Mul"let, n. [Cf. F. molet a sort of pinchers.]

Small pinchers for curling the hair.


B. Jonson.


© Webster 1913.

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