CHACE Abernethy's mane of copper-red, loaded-spring ringlets feels softer than you would think. It's dense and tight and majestic to look at, behind close-clipped sides and under a tuft of vibrant orange curls on top, but your fingers sink into it like down feathers.
"The colour is absolutely all natural, mate," he says. "The colour, the curls, everything. It's all natural."
He has been growing it like this for a little more than three years. Before that, he wore it in a massive afro.
"I'm used to turning heads and copping a feel every now and then," he says, but the attention went to a new level when he took on the mullet. "Instead of an 'Oh wow!', it was an 'Oh .... wow!'."
The Singleton retail worker, who was left out of a job and rethinking his future when the coronavirus pandemic descended, was crowned Kurri Mulletfest's best 'Ranga' mullet at the Chelmsford Hotel on Saturday, alongside Extreme winner Shaun Webb of Laguna, Grubby winner Trent Wright of Weston, Vintage champion Peter Geddes of Kilaben Bay, and Everyday Mullet winner Josh Hogg of Kurri.
"A few years ago, I thought stuff it, I've always wanted one of these haircuts, so I took it," Chace says, "It would take a fair bit to take it off. I've been growing it for a while, a lot of effort has gone into it, and it suits anything.
"And look at the people I'm around. Everyone is really open and inviting. It's a lovely place."
Chace will return to Kurri to compete for the grand final when the inaugural Mulletfest national tour comes home to the Chelmsford later this year. In his acceptance speech, he thanked his hairdresser.
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