There are so many types of haircuts for men to choose from, and it can be overwhelming to understand the styles and pick what is right for you.
If you need to rock a new haircut and you can’t figure out what is right for you, keep reading to learn all about the top men’s haircuts.
Understanding Barbershop Terminology
Before you check out some of the most popular and stylish haircuts below, let’s first go over some of the terms you should know about men’s haircuts. By becoming familiar with these terms, you will streamline your communication with a barber.
Speaking their language means they will hear your preferences accurately. Some of the most common terms, with a short explanation, include:
- Texturizing: Your barber can cut the ends of your hair at different lengths to create texture.
- Neckline: How the barber shapes the hairline at the back of your neck
- Layered Texture: Layering different hair lengths on top of each other
- Blending: How a barber gets ride of the lines between different sections of hair length
- Thinning: Specialized scissors take some weight off of thick hair textures.
- Fade: Hair slowly fades from long to short, sometimes as short as the skin.
In addition to having those terms at the ready, it will also be worth your time to review guard sizes for hair clippers so that you can accurately tell your barber how short you want your buzz.
20 Rocking Haircuts for Men
The names of haircuts can be confusing, and many of them blend to create unique styles. But it is helpful to understand the basic categories of men’s haircuts so you know the basic options available to you. So let’s explore some of the most popular and stylish haircuts for men.
1. The Undercut
The undercut fade is a haircut that embraces the fade style by taking it to its extreme. It highlights the difference in length between the sides and the top by leaving a lot of length on the top and cutting the sides extremely short.
The undercut is a type of high fade haircut in which the length on the top is enough to overlap the short cut on the sides. Like many haircuts in this article, you can blend it with other styles that utilize long hair, such as the man bun, the skin fade, and the comb-over.
The pompadour, sometimes called “pomp” for short, is a haircut that has been around for hundreds of years. While there is some flexibility with how you cut the sides of this haircut, the top is always long and slicked back.
This slicking back of the hair creates a considerable volume of hair on top that you will probably have to style with wax. A nice addition to the pompadour is some kind of fade style on the sides because it will emphasize the contrast in length, bringing out the feature on the top.
3. Buzz Cut
The buzz cut might be one of the most popular haircuts for men because of how easy and flexible it is. And when you do a buzz cut properly, it doesn’t have to be dull or lacking style. A buzz cut almost always involves using electric clippers (aka a buzzer) to cut the same length of hair around the entire head.
The length depends on the guard size you put on your clippers, and short buzz cuts resemble the military-style of hair cuts that often exist to meet specific regulations. One of the most attractive features of the buzz cut has to be the fact that you can do it yourself at home with little to no training.
4. Crew Cut
You can think of a crew cut as a subcategory of buzz cut that leaves longer hair at the front of the head. This longer hair usually tapers as it approaches the back of the head.
And the sides work with a taper fade or some other fade style. Depending on how long you leave the front, you can even combine the crew cut with the pompadour.
5. Taper Fade
Taper fades tend to be longer than normal fades, and they will never go as short as a skin fade. It’s a casual and low-drama hairstyle that begins around the sideburn area and gradually fades in the long hair on the top of the head.
Compared to the more radical fade haircuts like a skin fade or a high fade, the taper fade is subtle. The differences in length blend well, and it’s not a haircut that will draw too many looks in your direction.
3. Ivy League Haircut
The ivy league haircut is a crew cut with more length. Its name comes from the fact that it was popular amongst men at elite universities like Yale, Cornel, Princeton, and Harvard.
There is some flexibility with how you style the extra length, the popular options being a pompadour, a quiff, or a comb-over.
7. The Quiff
The quiff is similar in approach to the pompadour because it leaves a lot of hair on top and is a popular haircut amongst stylish men. The quiff haircut leaves you with longer hair at the hairline so that you have lots of hair to style upwards with.
Besides the flexibility in how you still a quiff, the other main benefit is that it can be an excellent way for people with thin hair to give themselves more volume and thickness.
8. Textured Crop
The textured crop haircut—also called a French crop—is all about the contrast between the short hair on the back and sides and the long hair on the top and front of the head. Textured crops work with both faded and tapered sides, and there is tons of flexibility with how you can style the front.
9. Faux Hawk
While the faux hawk haircut resembles the style of a mohawk, the faux hawk is all about embracing spikes on the top. The sides and back usually incorporate a fade cut.
And the spikes on top tend to be thick, unlike the small/highly-gelled spikes of other styles. One of the great parts of this hairstyle is that it has a similar cut to other haircuts like the quiff, allowing you to have two hairstyles with one haircut.
10. Caesar Haircut
The name of the Caesar haircut is said to come from the famous Roman general, and it is a short haircut that works particularly well for curly hair.
The main feature of this style is that it leaves enough hair on the top/front to create textured bangs. The sides and back are neat with a short taper, and the straight bangs in front help make your hair look thicker.
11. The Mullet
When it comes to the mullet haircut, it’s easy to think of the 1970s and all of the celebrities that sported this hairstyle. The mullet is all about the back of the head, where enough hair is left to create a flow over the neck.
The mullet uses a combination of fading on the sides and a slicking back of the hair on top to push as much hair backward as possible. You can add a mullet look to many of the haircuts on this list, including the mohawk and the pompadour.
12. Shadow Fade Haircut
A shadow fade gets its name because it is a fade style that blends the differences in length particularly well.
Unlike the sharp lines of contrast in a skin fade or a high fade, the blend of this haircut resembles a shadow in the way that the lines between sections of hair blend together. Even in a short haircut, shadow fades never reveal any skin and will always gradually transition to the longer hair on top.
If you’re worried about whether your fade haircut might look too dramatic, going for the shadow fade is a more subtle version of the fade.
13. Skin Fade
All fade haircuts involve short hair on the sides gradually lengthening into the thicker hair on top. But the skin fade, as the shortest possible fade haircut, takes this style to the extreme by using a razor to cut the bottom layer of the fade to the skin.
Because of this sharp contrast between the short sides and the length of hair on the top, the skin fade is one of the boldest ways to rock a fade haircut. It looks neat and stylish because of how it embraces contrast.
14. Low Fade
Of all the fade haircuts, the low fade is the most low-key way to rock the style. A low fade is a haircut that begins the fading on the lower part of your head, generally starting on the bottom third of the head.
Unlike the skin fade, the low fade blends the hair so gradually that you might not even notice the sharp contrast between the top and side lengths.
It also shows little to no skin, depending on how short you make the sides, making it a safe haircut for those wanting to see if a fade haircut is for them. Overall it is a safe way to try out this style.
15. Mid Fade
The mid fade haircut also goes by its other name of medium fade because it starts fading around midway between the neckline and the top.
Mid fades sometimes begin two-thirds up the sides, depending on what you want your barber to do and how short you want to start the fade. Choosing between the different fade styles can be tricky, and a lot of what determines that choice is your face structure.
The mid fade tends to make your head appear longer by highlighting the sides. If you’re unsure about which fade suits you, you can always start with a low fade and change it up from there.
16. High Fade
The high fade is the most direct and iconic way to rock a fade haircut because of how dramatic the short hair on the sides looks. The high fade maintains short hair up the sides until the top of the head, after which it quickly fades into the long hair on top.
The top of the forehead is usually the starting point for a high fade. On top of the risky look of this fade haircut, a high fade is often paired with the skin fade to give it an extra punch of style.
The obvious nature of the short sides creates a sharp contrast with the top, which is what makes this haircut a risky but sleek style. The high fade is not for everyone, but if you’re into the look, then go for it!
The comb-over haircut is exactly what it sounds like because it is the style of brushing hair from one side of your head over to the other side. It is like the side part, except the part is much more defined, and there is an emphasis on the side-swept hair.
And while it is true that the comb-over style is popular amongst balding men as a way to cover up their hair loss, it is by no means limited to them. There are countless ways for men with a full head of hair to rock this haircut with style.
18. Man Bun
There might have been a time in the past when the man bun was hard to find, but this hairstyle is officially a trendy way to rock long hair. As a relatively simple haircut, all you have to do is tie your long hair into a bun either on top of or behind your head.
So if you enjoy keeping your long hair but occasionally need to get it out of the way in a comfortable fashion, it’s a great idea to keep the man bun in your repertoire of stylish haircuts.
The mohawk is a men’s haircut that shows both strength and style. The name originates from the Mohawk tribe of the Iroquois peoples.
There is an association between the hairstyle and athletic people who want to capture the intense warrior energy in today’s world. In short, a mohawk is any hairstyle that leaves a strip of hair going from the front to the back.
There is lots of flexibility with this haircut in terms of the width of the hair strip and the fade style of the sides. The most intense way to rock a mohawk is to shave the sides, which gives ultimate contrast to the top.
20. Burst Fade
You can easily confuse the burst fade haircut with the drop fade because of their similarities. But the burst fade has a distinctive feature: there is an extra round fade line around the ears. This round shape is said to look like a sunrise, which is where the name of this haircut comes from.
Overall, the burst fade is a unique haircut that might be too extravagant for some people but will be the perfect style for those who don’t mind the attention!
Types of Men’s Haircuts Frequently Asked Questions
With all of these haircut categories in mind, it is now time to answer some of the most common questions people have about haircuts for men:
What Is The Best Haircut For Men?
Since people tend to have different fashion tastes, it is hard to answer this question definitively without leaving out other great haircuts. But some of the most popular and fashionable haircuts for men include the undercut, pompadour, caesar cut, and buzz cut.
What Are The Four Types Of Hairstyles?
In terms of hair texture, knowing the four main categories will help to inform you about what haircut will work best. While there are gaps between these categories, the principal hair textures are straight, wavy, curly, and extra curly. Of these types, straight hair is the most common.
How Do I Identify My Hair Type?
If you’re unsure about your hair type, you can pull a piece out and visually inspect it to figure out your hair texture and thickness. You can compare the strand of hair to a thread to figure out the thickness.
What Is A Signature Haircut?
Signature hairstyles have a classic look because of how well they fit your face and hair texture. These haircuts should work for you consistently over time and ideally require little to no styling since you designed the cut to fit your natural hair.
What Is The Secret Of Hair Growth?
While there is no secret, per se, to healthy hair that consistently grows, you can promote hair growth by massaging the top of your head. Stimulating the scalp with a massage helps bring nutrients to the hair follicles. The availability of these nutrients promotes faster growth.
Types of Haircuts for Men: Final Thoughts
Hopefully, you now have a thorough understanding of the types of haircuts for men and the terms you can use to communicate what you want. Use these examples as jumping-off points, and do not be afraid to find something unique to your style!