Why do Hasidic Men Keep Curls?

The Biblical and Traditional Basis for Payot

Why do Hasidic men have curls? The answer lies in the religious text, Tanakh.

According to the commandment in Tanakh, Jewish men should not shave the sides of their heads. The word “pe’a” translates to “corner, side, edge.

To comply with this commandment, some members of the Orthodox Jewish community wear Payot, which means “corners” in Hebrew. Payot is long, curled sideburns that hang down beside the ears.

The tradition of Payot has been a part of Judaism for centuries and is still observed by many Jewish men today.

According to the sources, Jewish men wear Payot as a symbol of their religious belief and commitment to Judaism. The decision to wear Payot is not mandatory, but many men choose to wear it to connect with their religious heritage and show their devotion to God.

Payot come in different styles for different Jewish sects, such as Hasidic, Chard al, and Yemenite Jews. In conclusion, the reason why Hasidic men have curls is rooted in the religious tradition of Judaism.

Payot serves as a symbol of a Jewishman’s devotion to God and connection to their heritage. It is important to understand the cultural and religious significance of Payot in the Jewish community.

Check out this Youtube video: “What Are Those Curly Side Locks That Some Jewish Men…” to learn fascinating insights about Hasidic traditions and culture.

Styles of Payot and How to Wear Them

Payot, also known as sidelocks, are the curls that Hasidic men grow on the sides of their heads. There are several different styles of payot, each with their own unique characteristics and ways to wear them.

One style is the classic payot, which involves growing long curls that hang down to the jawline or longer. This style is often worn by Hasidic men who belong to specific sects, such as Satmar or Lubavitch.

The classic payot can be styled in a variety of ways, such as braided or twisted into a knot.

Another style is the short payot, which involves growing curls that only reach the earlobe or just below. This style is often worn by Hasidic men who prefer a more modern or subtle look.

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Short payot can be styled in various ways, such as combed back or tucked behind the ear.

There is also the yotzei payot style, which involves growing long curls that extend past the shoulders. This style is often worn by Hasidic men who belong to specific sects, such as Breslov or Toldot Aharon.

The yotzei payot can be styled in a variety of ways, such as left loose or braided.

No matter which style of payot a Hasidic man chooses to wear, it is important to properly maintain them to keep them looking their best. This can involve regular washing and conditioning, as well as using products such as hair gel or oil to keep the curls in place and prevent frizz.

It is also important to visit a barber or stylist who is experienced in cutting and styling payot for maintenance and touch-ups.

Other Hair Customs and Grooming Practices Among Jewish Men

Aside from payot, Jewish men also follow certain grooming practices and hair customs. Some Orthodox Jewish men and boys may leave a small knot of hair uncut near their ears, known as a tzitzis.

This custom is based on a verse in the Torah (Numbers 15:38-39) and serves as a reminder of the religious commandments. Additionally, some Jewish men may wear a kippah or yarmulke on their head as a sign of respect and reverence for God.

In terms of hair care, some Jewish men may use kosher hair products, avoiding any ingredients derived from non-kosher animals.

The Significance of Beard and Head Covering

Hasidic men are seen wearing beards and hats or head coverings in their daily lives as part of their religious beliefs and traditions. The hair curls worn by Hasidic men have special significance and are called “payot” (in Hebrew) and “peyos” (in Yiddish).

These curls are grow on the sides of their heads and are typically long, curly and often tucked behind the ear. The practice of growing these curls is based on the commandment in the Torah that forbids men from cutting the hair on the side of their heads.

This commandment pertains to the concept of creating a separation between holy and mundane aspects of life.

Moreover, the beard is an essential aspect of Jewish religion signifying masculinity and maturity. Beards are believed to represent divine wisdom, purity, and power.

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The beard is highly regarded because it grows naturally on a man’s face without the need for any human assistance. The beard is also seen as a symbol of God’s presence on earth.

In conclusion, the significance of beard and head covering in the Hasidic community has its roots in centuries-old traditions based on Jewish belief and commandments. The curls or payot and the beard serve as a reminder of the presence of God, masculinity, holiness, and separation from worldly things.

Decoding Hasidic Jewish Male Appearance

Hasidic Jewish men have curls, known as payot in Hebrew, as a reminder of their commitment to God and the commandments of the Torah. According to en.wikipedia.org, the commandment not to round off the corners of one’s head, including the hair at the temples, is found in the book of Leviticus in the Torah.

The payot serve as a visual symbol of their religious dedication and are often worn with a yarmulke or kippah to signify their submission to God.

Misconceptions and Stereotypes about Payot and Hasidic Jews

One of the common misconceptions about payot, or the side curls typically worn by Hasidic Jewish men, is that they are solely for religious reasons. However, this is not always the case.

Some Hasidic Jews wear payot simply because it is a tradition passed down from their ancestors. Additionally, not all Hasidic Jews have payot, as it is not necessarily required by Jewish law.

There is also a stereotype that men with payot are uneducated or incompetent. This is simply untrue and stems from negative stereotypes of Hasidic Jews.

In reality, many Hasidic Jews are highly educated and successful in various industries.

It’s important to recognize and dispel misconceptions and stereotypes surrounding Hasidic Jewish male appearance, including the tradition of payot. By learning more about the reasons behind these practices and customs, we can gain a better understanding and appreciation of Hasidic Jewish culture.

FAQs about Payot and Hasidic Jewish Male Appearance

What is the significance of the sideburns or side curls among Hasidic Jewish men?

Payot or side curls symbolize a connection to God and a reminder to keep the commandments.

Why do Hasidic Jewish men often wear black hats and coats?

Wearing black hats and coats are part of the culture and tradition, representing modesty and humility.

Can non-Jewish men also wear payot or grow beards in solidarity with the Jewish community?

Yes, anyone can choose to grow payot or beard, but it is important not to appropriate Jewish culture.

Are there any health or hygiene concerns related to growing payot or beards?

Proper hygiene practices, such as regular washing and combing, can prevent potential issues such as skin irritation or infections.


In conclusion, Hasidic men wear curls, specifically Payot, as part of their religious beliefs to follow the commandment against cutting the sides of one’s head in the Tanakh. Payot is a significant aspect of Hasidic Jewish male appearance, and it is essential to understand the cultural and religious significance of this traditional hairstyle within the community.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of Hasidic hair curls?

The reason for Ultra-Orthodox males' hair and curl rules is the following: the original basis is a Biblical scripture which states that a man should not 'round the corner of his head.' Authoritative talmudic scholars have determined that the meaning of this scripture is that there should be a hair cutting restriction.

Why do Hasidic men have beards?

The Talmud prohibits men from shaving their body and pubic hair because such activity is considered feminine behavior, violating the prohibition of: 'A man shall not put on a woman's garment.' Male Ashkenazi Jews followed the Talmudic law as they lived in a European society in which such shaving was regarded as...

What is the meaning of the shtreimel hat?

Most shtreimel's are made of thirteen tail pelts to symbolize the unity of God since there are thirteen letters in the Hebrew word for 'One.' However, some have been known to contain twelve pelts to symbolize the twelve tribes of Israel.

Why do Jews sway when they pray?

Shuckeling is believed to increase concentration and emotional intensity. In Chassidic lore, it is seen as an expression of the soul's desire to abandon the body and reunite itself with its source, similar to a flame's shaking back and forth as if to free itself from the wick.

Jonathan B. Delfs

I love to write about men's lifestyle and fashion. Unique tips and inspiration for daily outfits and other occasions are what we like to give you at MensVenture.com. Do you have any notes or feedback, please write to me directly: [email protected]

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