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Nobody Touches the Hair
"Listen man! You can threaten me all you like, but lets get one thing straight. Nobody, but nobody *bleep* with the hair!"

This could be seen as a subtrope of Hates Being Touched, but it's usually used to convey a completely different message about the character. Whereas a character who Hates Being Touched is generally a very reserved or shy character, a character who tells others Nobody Touches The Hair is in general the opposite - the point here is to convey pride and vanity. As Traumatic Haircut explains, the hair is often seen as similar to a peacock's tail - a display - and so it is a very easy symbol for vanity in general. Also, whereas Hates Being Touched is probably about 50/50 comedy to drama, this trope is overwhelmingly comic. Frequently these characters will have very outlandish styles.

If it is Played for Drama, expect sexual molestation and/or assault to be a major element in their backstory, possibly including being dragged By The Hair. In this case, it may be resolved with an Intimate Haircut.

Compare Not in the Face!

Examples:

Anime & Manga
  • Himeko from Kannazuki no Miko, as a result of Domestic Abuse in her childhood.
  • Matt from Digimon Adventure says this in a throwaway line. Like a lot of stuff in the dub, it sort of disappears into the ether after that.
  • Brook in One Piece will try to prevent enemy combatants from contact with his hair at any cost. This is because being a skeleton, he considers it his only visible trait still the same from when he was still alive, and it won't grow back if it gets cut off (and considering his sole purpose now is to meet up with Laboon again, he kinda needs Laboon to still be able to recognize him somehow). He protects it to such an extent that he loses his very first real fight in the series in order to avoid damage to his hair.
  • Ryu / Ryo from Shaman King takes a lot of pride in his hairstyle. Unfortunately for him, his hair getting sliced into increasingly weird shapes is a Running Gag, to the point where you can use his current hairstyle to follow the series' timeline. In the first episode, Yoh cuts the tip off his two-foot pompadour to scare him away from a gravesite he's vandalizing. During the first arc's Storming the Castle finale, the whole thing gets cut down to the middle, leaving him with two half-pomps sticking out in a v shape. Both of these are then sliced off by Dracula...only for Ryo to come full circle by spontaneously regrowing his original pomp before kicking vampire ass.
  • Jessie in Pokémon. She caught Seviper barehanded when it messed her hair up.

Fanfiction

Film
  • Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever. Interestingly enough, this seemed to be a theme with John Travolta characters; see the Welcome Back, Kotter entry below.
    Tony Manero: Would ya just watch the hair. Ya know, I work on my hair a long time and you hit it. He hits my hair.
  • Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, when a warrior he's been set against in a duel works his famous duckbill hair into horns. "All right. THAT'S IT! This 'White Devil' thing has gone far enough! Nobody! Messes! WITH THE 'DO!" Then immediately subverted when the warrior continues kicking his ass.
  • Undercover Brother: Undercover Brother is very protective of his Afro, including telling Sista Girl, "Don't touch the hair!"; telling Conspiracy Brother, "Don't touch the 'fro!", and beating up Mr. Feather when he cuts off a piece of it: "You mess with the 'fro, you got to go."
  • Charles Xavier in X-Men: First Class uses this trope. This is an in-joke to fans, since anyone who is familiar with the series knows that he goes completely bald. Xavier uses the Cerebro prototype for the first time, and Hank struggles with fitting the electrodes on his head.
    Hank: Are you sure we can't shave your head?
    Charles: (annoyed) Don't touch my hair.
  • Princess Vespa refuses to make herself useful when escaping from the Spaceballs prison complex until one Mook's stray blaster fire singes her hair, then she picks up a blaster rifle and guns down all of 'em.
  • In Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, the news teams come together for a fight and establish some ground rules:
    Ron Burgundy: "Now before we do this, let's go over the ground rules. Rule number 1: No touching of the hair or face! And that's it! Now let's do this!"
  • Rapunzel in Tangled will let her hair be touched only by her adoptive mother, although this may be a case of having being told aforementioned mother that people would use her healing locks for their personal gain. She also does not want to talk about her hair much, to the point she neglects to mention its powers ("I have hair that glows when I sing") at a time when they may be needed...

Literature
  • Soto the History Monk from Thief of Time. The book says that even the most restrained mind has a conditional clause somewhere, and Soto's is, "But not the hair. Don't touch the hair, all right?" He gets around the monastery's shaved-head rules by insisting that the hair is actually a separate creature which makes its home atop his dutifully shaven head.

Live-Action TV
  • On one episode of Arrow, Roy volunteers Sin for a makeover from Thea so that Sin can look sexy/slutty and pose as a hooker as bait for a vicious hooker assaulter. Thea obliges, saying they'll do something about her hair, and Sin asserts that nobody touches the hair.
  • Cheers. Sam is not only extremely protective of his hair, he's got hair care down to an exact science.
  • Played for Drama in Inspector Rex, where molested children in an orphanage freak out when their hair is being touched.
  • Fonzie in Happy Days.
  • Uncle Jessie says this on Full House, to the point where it borders on being a catch phrase.
  • Glory from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, when she is hit on the head by a crowbar.
    Glory: Hey! (beat) Watch the hair!
  • Angel:
    • Spike imagines Angel doing this while mockingly impersonating him.
    • Jay-Don is a very loud (as in flashy) vampire who has two main rules: never touch the hair or the glasses. Angel stakes him to get into a heist by impersonating him. He gets rid of the sunglasses quickly but keeps up the fuss about the hair.
  • Barbarino on Welcome Back, Kotter was like this.
  • In one episode of Brotherly Love, Lloyd waxes nostalgic about how he and Joe's dad used to horse around together, and makes to muss up Joe's hair. Joe darts away and tells him not to do that. It's a long quote, ending in "Shoot me in the knee caps, that's good clean fun! But the hair is off limits."
  • Ted from How I Met Your Mother hates people touching his hair, but only because he spends hours every day arranging it to look just right. Subverted at least once, with Barney deliberately ruffling his hair and Ted deciding that the ruffled look is actually "awesome".
  • In one episode of Taxi, Louie tries to tell the cabbies about his supposed sex life with Zena, wanting to whisper about it in their ears. He tries to move Bobby's hair away from his ears, only for Bobby to tell him, "I don't even let people I like touch my hair!"

Video Games

Web Original
  • RWBY: Yang has a long golden mane that is carefully styled in an asymmetrical way to look like fire. If her hair is damaged in battle, her eyes turn red and her Berserk Button explodes. She punched Junior through a window for grabbing a handful of her hair and blasted an Ursa to death for cutting a single strand.
  • In Welcome to Night Vale Carlos, owner of the hair in question, apparently doesn't feel this way himself, but the guy crushing on him, Cecil, definitely does and gushes about his "perfect hair" every chance he gets. When Carlos gets his hair cut, Cecil is so angry that he gives out the name and location of the person responsible and is positively gleeful when poor Telly the barber is found howling and clutching Carlos' locks of hair in despair at what he’d done.

Western Animation
  • Peter Venkman in The Real Ghostbusters.
  • In the episode "Life in the Past Lane" of Daria, Jane falls for Nathan, a guy with fantastic dress sense, who turns out to be an aficionado of 1950s and '60s fashion. When the two cut the rug at a speakeasy-themed club, she runs her fingers through his... pomade. He freaks out, and runs to the men's room to fix his do.
  • On Johnny Bravo, Johnny has this attitude.
  • Lee Kanker from Ed, Edd n Eddy seems to have shades of this attitude towards her hair- she shoves Eddy away from her in "Look into my Eds" when he tries to move her bangs out of her eyes, and if she gets wet/injured/disheveled in any kind of way, she frequently asks, "Does my hair look okay?"
    • Jimmy also frequently yells out "Hair emergency! Hair emergency!" when anything that might ruin his curls happens.
  • Though there are no notable instances in Winx Club, the 4Kids opening theme song does invoke it:
    You can look all you want/ But don't touch the hair!
  • Jersey Shore-reject Anne Maria from Total Drama Revenge of the Island works on her hair so much that even reaching out to touch it will set her off.
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Rarity is fully capable of handling all sorts of danger and regularly works under crushing amounts of stress. Her reaction to having her mane dyed green, however? Quite loud.

Real Life


Never Trust a Hair TonicHair TropesNon-Mammalian Hair
Never Trust a Hair TonicPersonal Appearance TropesNo Brows
Nobody Here but Us StatuesComedy TropesNo Can Opener

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