How Does Superman Cut His Hair?

Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at brianc@cbr.com).

Reader Harry L. wrote in to ask, simply, how does Superman get his hair cut?

In the old days of "Superman" comic books, this was answered the same way most questions were handled - no one cared, so it never came up. Seriously, though, comics just tended not to address things like this early on. I'm sure readers were curious, it just never came up in the comics. There really wasn't much in the way of continuity in the comics at the time, as they were basically all just "one and done" stories, so no one was exactly keeping track of things like "How does Superman's hair work?"

First off, let's just show a bit from "Action Comics" #251 (where Superman was artificially aged) to make it clear that Superman's hair can NOT be cut normally...

"Superman" #201 gave an official answer to what was basically the unofficial way of handling these things - Superman didn't have to worry about cutting his beard because so long as he was under a yellow sun (and therefore had his powers), his hair did not grow!

There was even a later comic based on that concept, where a reporter noticed that Clark Kent's hair never grew (she figured it was a wig).

In "Superman" #139, we established that heat vision CAN cut Superman's hair, as Krypto and Supergirl have to lend Superman a hand when some red kryptonite made his hair grow super long (how awesome is it that the look of Superman with just his beard off looks exactly like how Superman did with long hair after he returned from the dead?)...

In the "Man of Steel" reboot in 1986, John Byrne used the heat vision approach to come up with how Superman cut his hair (as Byrne's Superman's hair DID grow)...

That has been the case ever since, although eventually people also began to have Superman use just a basic mirror, as well (which doesn't make a ton of sense, but hey).

Recently, in "Rebirth," the piece of the ship method was returned...

So there ya go, Harry!

If anyone else has a question they'd like to see answered, drop me a line at brianc@cbr.com!

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