What Is A Fade In A Haircut?

A fade haircut is one of those classic barber styles that are as unique as the individual who wears one. There are many different ways to clipper the head, and a fade is the perfect example of short haircuts for men that are perfectly blended from top to bottom.


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Before you venture to the salon or shop, you should know a few general basics about this cut. Pictures speak volumes when it comes to communicating with your barber or stylist. If you just say you want a fade haircut, you may no idea what you’ll end up with. Read on to understand how to do this short clipper cut and what it entails.

How To Do A Fade Haircut

While they may look easy enough to master, a fade haircut is fairly difficult for the novice to create. For starters, you’ll want the right tools for the job. You’ll need a pair of clippers, random guards, a clipper comb, and a blending brush.

After determining the look of the fade, you’ll begin cutting the hair at its shortest at the nape of the neck. From there, you will increase the guard size and continue cutting, gradually leaving the longest of the hair at the temples. Using a blending brush you can push the hair down and up to make sure every piece gets blended and cut to the correct length as you work. After you’ve finished the back and the sides, a clipper comb should be used to blend the top down to the sides effortlessly.

Tips For A First-Rate Fade

A fade haircut is by far an easy cut to create. Because it is heavily blended and gradually gets longer towards the top of the head, you should probably avoid cutting this mens hairstyles at home. A professional barber or stylist knows how to fade hair properly and will ensure the final style looks great.

The darker the hair the harder it is to blend. Be patient with your stylist as they create the perfect fade. If you see lines or patchiness in your cut, you’ll need more blending. This is exactly why it pays to get a fade haircut from a pro.

Use photos during your haircut consultation to be certain you get the look you love. There are so many different ways to fade the hair and the last thing you want, is a cut that turns out too short, or not short enough. Browse the internet for endless fade inspiration.

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What Are The Types Of Fade Haircuts?

From old school barbershop fades to men’s hair styles paired with detailing and lines, there are three main types of fades that will help you understand this popular cut. Fades are categorized as a high fade, a medium fade, or a low fade. The higher the fade, the shorter the hair is on the sides near the temple (think of a classic military haircut.) A low fade leaves much more workable length on the sides. A medium fade is ideal for most classic styles. Take a look at the following fades to see which cut suits you, and your comfort level.

Low Fade

The low fade haircut will suit those of you who are willing to preserve the most natural look there is. Low skin fade touches only the back of your head while the length is increased as the cut moves up. This type of fade cut mostly suits men with diamond or triangular head shape.

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Mid Fade Haircut

When it comes to mid fade, it is safe to say that many men opt for it these days. The reason why a medium fade haircut is so popular is that you can experiment with the variety of longer top cuts, like a pompadour. What is more, it is less reserved than low fade and less dramatic than a high one. Try it out, and you will not regret it!

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High Fade Haircut

What is a high fade haircut? To tell you the truth, high fade is all about the contrast and most often about the low maintenance since most of your hair is cut closer to the scalp. However, that does not mean that there are no looks to experiment with – they are still plenty, even with a high top fade. Besides, high fade haircut black men like the most!

Bald Fade / Skin Fade Haircut

What is a zero fade haircut? Bald fade cut is different from all the described above in the way the fade is cut itself. The thing is that bald skin fade is cut right at the scalp. Bald fade haircut will suit those of you who would like to accent the border between your beard and haircut.

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Drop Fade Haircut

Drop fade is called so because the fade drops right behind the ear. There is a visible arch from the temple to the ear and that is exactly what makes this cut a little different from all the others described. If you are looking for something new to experiment with we suggest you try this one out!

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Burst Fade

For a bolder and more textured look, go for a burst fade on the sides and back. As it seems unusual and intricate itself, you can style the hair on the top of your head quite modest. Or, if you like to add some definition, you are welcome to make it textured and dimensional.

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Scissor Fade

It is true that not all the men are equally fond of clippers that is why we suggest to your attention the scissor fade cut. As you may have already guessed, the barbers use scissors instead of clippers to succeed with this cut. What makes it so unique is that it is a little bit softer than all the fades described, if you are not a fan of experimentation then this is the cut you need.

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Temple Fade

Temple fade haircut is very popular among men with tight curls or afro hair. The thing is that it is tapered around the temples and sharp lines are created. These lines are what make the cut so special, so you better not try to pull it of on your own but visit an experienced barber instead.

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Taper Fade

Taper fade haircut can be easily called the most classic one when it comes to fades. The thing is that when you compare taper vs fade, there is no dramatic fade at all, there is no skin exposure, just a neatly cut low taper fade. If you are not looking for a dramatic change, then this cut will suit you perfectly.

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Comb Over Fade

Fade comb over hairstyles are pretty required men haircuts 2020 too. However, this is a cut that needs some time and effort spent on while styling. In case you are ready to waste your precious time on your hair then high fade comb over is the perfect option for you!

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Undercut Fade

Fade undercut will suit those of you who are all about the business in the back and party on the top. The thing is that any skin fade undercut requires back and sides to be closely shaved, while you can experiment with the hair on the top the way you like.

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Top Fade Hairstyles

Now, when we have it covered what a fade haircut is and what types of it there are it is the time you get to know about all possible styles to pull off with this cut! Enjoy!

Side Part Fade

Side part haircut is surely the classiest one, what is more, it works with all possible types of fades there are. All you need to do is to pick your fav side part fade and get it professionally done!

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Hard Part Fade

The best thing about a hard part haircut is that it brings contrast to the cut so that all the details are noticeable. However, you need to be aware that hard part fade will require some time, effort and means to style it properly.

Source: @hayden_cassidy via Instagram

Pompadour Fade

Pompadour hairstyle is the one that has been trending for decades now. However, it is time you freshen up your favorite pompadour with a fresh update. The mixture pompadour and fade is the perfect blend of mens 2020 hair styles!

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Faux Hawk Fade

Faux hawk haircut is surely the one that requires courage to pull off. What is more faux hawk fade also begs for some styling skills to be at hand. In case that is something you think you can easily deal with, then this daring and stylish cut is what you have been looking for!

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Spiky High Top

Those of you who are willing to combine high fade with some longer hair on the top may as well opt for this spiked hair on the top option.

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Slick Back Hair

Slicked back hair is something that not everyone would appreciate, however, if you have soft and straight hair and you would like to keep it longer but out of your face – slick back fade is undoubtedly the best choice for you!

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French Crop Fade

You’ll be surprised but a fade and a French crop haircut have quite a lot in common. When you get a mens fade haircut, your hair length on the sides and back gradually becomes shorter. The same happens when you opt for a French crop: the hair on top is cut in varying layers with the longest at the forehead and the shortest at the crown. For the added boldness, tell your barber to give you a high skin fade that’s flush with the fringe.

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Textured Top

As the fade gives your haircut such a neat and clean appearance, the top can be styled whatever way you like. Pair it, for instance, with textured hair on top, and you’ll get a very flashy look.

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Buzz Cut Fade

Those guys who prefer mens hairstyles 2020 of less length shouldn’t waive them only for the sake of a short fade haircut. Say, a buzz cut can be perfectly adorned with a high bold fade on the back and sides. To add definition and integrity to the whole look, you can finish it off with a line-up around the forehead as well as cheek and chin lines.

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Shaggy Fade

It’s no surprise that a fade hair cut is extremely versatile. It can be adjusted not only to different hair types and lengths but also to almost any ambiance. If you’re in the mood for more breezy and relaxed hairstyle, tousle your hair on the top for a perfect “bedhead” look.

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Skin Fade Odell Hawk

Opting for a skin fade haircut black men move the focus to their amazing hair texture on top while keeping the whole look neat and clean. If you want to make a strong statement with your hairstyle, ask your barber to dye the tips of your top hair in lighter color. In this way, you’ll be rocking the Odell Hawk, which is all the rage now.

Source: @nickthebarber via Instagram

Edgy Two-Level Fade

A basic fade haircut doesn’t seem enough for you? How about a two-level fade? With such a stylish and daring look, your hairstyle will be the talk of the town. Get your barber to disconnect them from one another with a hard part for added emphasis.

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Curly Undercut Fade

No matter how you prefer to style your curly locks, a fade is a must if you want to look trendy and groomed. A curly hair fade adds to the appeal of your ringlets and makes them even more vivid. On top of that, with a curly fade, managing your unruly locks won’t be an issue anymore.

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High Top Fade

As we said, a fade haircut is a great addition to any style of the top, especially if you prefer longer ones. Although a high top fade will benefit greatly from any type of fade if you want a really edgy look go for a high skin fade.

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Short Texture With Simple Design

A short hair fade has quite a lot of benefits too. First, it doesn’t require a lot of maintenance nor will you spend much time on styling. Besides, a skin taper allows embellishing your cut with hair design. For a low-key option, let your barber shave in a couple of lines behind your ear. Braver guys can employ more intricate carvings.

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Mohawk Fade

You can hardly imagine a Mohawk haircut without a fade. Although you can simply have your top hair undercut, a fade will add a touch of style to it.

Source: @egobarbers via Instagram

Quiff Fade

A quiff may sometimes look a bit childish and plain. Not to let this happen, complement it with any kind of fade. Remember, the higher the fade, the edgier your hairstyle looks. So, you can adjust it depending on the effect you want to achieve and the ambiance you want your trending mens hairstyles 2020 to suit.

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Afro Curls Fade

When it comes to a drop fade haircut black men are the first who should try it. Having such kinky locks, nobody but you knows how hard it is to keep them looking dapper. A fade will not only give you an ultra clean look but also help create additional contrast.

Source: @nickthebarber via Instagram

Short Hair Fade

One of the best things about the fade is that it can be paired with any hair length on top and still make up a contrasty look. If you generally prefer short hairstyles, then opt for a skin fade. This will allow your hair atop to stand out against the bold sides.

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Textured Crop With Undercut Fade

To accentuate the bold structure of your hair, you can complement your style with an undercut fade. It will draw the whole attention to the hair on the top of your head, so ensure you get it styled appropriately. One of the most flattering mens fade haircuts is the one paired with a textured crop.

Source: @hayden_cassidy via Instagram

Curly Hair Fade

A fade cut is always a great accompaniment for curly hair. Thanks to the clean appearance of the sides and back it helps to create, the look comes out contrasty and edgy. On your side, it requires little to no styling, as you can simply dishevel your locks up top and you are good to go.

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Straight Hair Fade

Nevertheless, with straight locks, a fade looks as attractive as with any other hair type. Moreover, it gives you a myriad of styling options, as you can easily create 2020 men’s hairstyles that suit any ambiance, from casual to professional. Besides, you can play around with a fade type too. Go for a high bald fade for a sharper look and choose a low taper fade if you prefer something more low-key.

Source: @kevinelezaj via Instagram

Disconnected Faded Undercut

If you want your hairstyle to have more contrast and boldness, then turn to a disconnected faded cut. The transition between the long hair on top and short on the sides and back is not gradual but abrupt, thanks to which the desired sharpness is achieved.

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360 Waves

When you rock such an elaborate hairstyle as 360 waves, it is very easy to overload it. So that it would come out clean and edgy, opt for a fade on the back and sides. You do not want to make it overly bald or high though, as you still want your waves to show off.

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Caesar Haircut With Fade

A classic Caesar haircut can be considered a little old-fashioned nowadays. To give it a contemporary touch, complement your cut with a fade. To keep the focus on the textured top more, go for a high skin fade on the sides. In this way, even a coarse beard will not make your appearance look unkempt.

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Texture + Temple Fade

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Textured Faded Faux Hawk

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Long Top Short Faded Sides

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High And Tight + Skin Fade + Texture

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Slicked Back + Disconnected Undercut + High Fade

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Side Part Medium Hair + High Fade

Source: @fernthebarber via Instagram

Wavy Highlighted Top + Low Fade

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Tapered Brushed Back

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Buzz With Line Up

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Red Curly Texture

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Short Blonde Afro Curls

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Reverse Top With Bang

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Crop Top Fade

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Asymmetrical Top Undercut Fade

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Wet Curls Low Fade

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Ideal Fade

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Combed Short Messy Hair

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The fade haircut is the most requested for these days. That is why we suggest to your attention the fullest compilation of all possible fade types and styles to experiment with. Enjoy!


What is a fade haircut?

A fade is a popular male haircut that implies getting the hair on the sides and back trimmed so that it changes in length gradually from the longest around the top to the shortest at the hairline.

What is the best fade haircut?

As there is no such thing as the worst fade haircut, all of them can be considered the best. It all depends on the message you want your haircut to deliver as well as your personal preferences.

What are the types of fades?

Fades vary in the kind of pattern the hair is cut and how harsh the transition from long hair to short is. So, they can be tapered, undercut, temple, scissor cut as well as low, mid and high.

What do I tell my barber for a fade?

A surefire way to get the desired fade haircut is to bring a picture of it with you to show your barber. However, if you insist on describing the cut, tell them what kind of fade you want and how long it should be. Provided, of course, that your barber knows what a fade is. Otherwise, we really suggest you look for another, more qualified hair stylist.

What does a fade haircut look like?

A fade features shortly tapered back and sides as well as relatively longer hair on top. This combination creates a clean silhouette with a strong impact.

How long does a fade haircut last?

This majorly depends on the speed at which your hair grows. However, on average, you will need to visit your hair stylist for upkeep once every 2-3 weeks.


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  • The latest on men’s hairstyles from GQ. Everything you need to know about men’s hair including trends, ideas, recommended products and styling tips.Source