Men in North Korean 'ordered to get Kim Jong-un's haircut' reports claim

'Let us trim our hair in accordance with the Socialist lifestyle'

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The Independent Online

It's been at least a couple of months since a tale of dictatorial excess has emerged from North Korea, and the latest rumour is no less bizarre with reports that men have been instructed to adopt a 'Dear Leader' haircut in honour of Kim Jong-un.

State-sanctioned guidelines were reportedly imposed on the capital Pyongyang two weeks ago, the BBC reports, with the shaved sides, ahead-of-the-trend, high-top fade haircut look now being rolled out across the country.

"Our leader's haircut is very particular, if you will," a source told Radio Free Asia. "It doesn't always go with everyone since everyone has different face and head shapes."

News from North Korea is notoriously difficult to corroborate. Earlier this year, it was widely rumoured state TV had reported that North Korea had landed an astronaut on the Sun.

Experts on the region have already cast their doubts on the verity of the news.

"This sounds like BS to me," Aidan Foster Carter, an Honorary Senior Research Fellow in Sociology & Modern Korea at Leeds University told the Washington Post.

"For a start, no one else in North Korea seems to sport a Kim Jong Un hairdo!"

However, the secretive state does have history when it comes to its citizens' hairstyles - last year it issued a list of 10 approved model socialist trims.

And state TV reportedly launched a campaign against long hair recently, declaring: "Let us trim our hair in accordance with the Socialist lifestyle," though a former NK resident now living in China told the Korea Times that the style is actually not that popular back home, where it used to be known as the "Chinese smuggler haircut".

Former leader Kim Jong-il, who ruled for 17 years, sported a similar haircut albeit a slightly more voluminous one.