Travis Kelce insists that when it comes to his hair, anyone not giving credit where it's due can cut it out.
The 34-year-old Kansas City Chiefs tight end has been at the center of conversation following a recent New York Times article that detailed a surge in barbershop requests for buzz cut fades, referred to in the article as “the Travis Kelce.” On platforms like TikTok and Twitter, users criticized the article for overlooking the cut's longstanding popularity within various Black communities.
"The haircut tens of millions of Black men have been getting since the '80s is apparently now called 'The Travis Kelce,'" one user tweeted. "Happy Black History Month!"
"I'm trying to figure out what Black barbershop you go in and say, 'let me get a Travis Kelce,'" one user quipped in a recent TikTok post.
Kelce addressed the controversy while speaking with reporters during the Super Bowl's media day. During an interview with the Caps Off Podcast, the athlete was asked if he agreed with the notion that he invented the look.
@capsoffpodcast They really think Kelce invented the fade 💀 #traviskelcehaircut #traviskelce #traviskelcetaylorswift #traviskelce87 #traviskelceandtaylorswift #taylorswifttraviskelce #taylorswifttravis #swiftiesoftiktok #jasonkelce #haircutstyle #nflmediaday #superbowl2023 #superbowl2023🏈 #superbowlvegas #vegassuperbowl #capsoffpod #capsoffpodszn2 #capsoffpodtakes #capsoffpodcast ♬ original sound - CAPS OFF
“It’s absolutely ridiculous. And to do it on February 1, to throw me to the wolves like that,” Kelce expressed, referencing the start of Black History Month. “That was just messed up, man. I don’t want anything to do with that one.”
“Got a good fade if you need it though. It’s a two on top, a nice high-to-mid fade with a taper on the back,” he continued. “But I didn’t invent that. I just asked for it.”
In 2016, Ebony magazine reported that the style of the cut evolved from the 1940s military grooming requirements. Iconic wearers of the fade have included Will Smith at the start of his "Fresh Prince" era, Grace Jones, and Doug E. Fresh.