Mastering the High Fade: The Ultimate Guide for Men’s Haircut Transformation

Man with a High Fade Hairstyle

There has been a meteoric rise in the popularity of the high fade mens haircut. The high fade is a modern and clean haircut that is achieved by tapering and merging the hair on the sides and back of the head. It’s adaptable and may be worn with a wide range of hair textures and styles, including curly hair. This article will take you on a journey through the world of the high fade haircut for guys, covering the many styles available, how to keep your new cut looking fresh, and other frequently asked questions.

The Basics of High Fade Mens Haircut

The high fade mens haircut, as the name suggests, begins the fade quite high up on the head. This is contrasted with the mid and low fades, which start at middle and lower points, respectively. Key aspects of this haircut include:

  • Defining the Fade: The hair is trimmed in a manner that it gradually decreases in length from the top towards the sides and back;
  • Versatility: Works with various hair lengths on top, from short buzz cuts to longer, more voluminous styles;
  • Modern Appeal: Its sleek appearance makes it popular among modern fashion-forward individuals.

Curly Hair and the High Fade

Man with High Fade Hairstyle and Curly Hair

The mens curly fade haircut presents a unique and stylish take on the traditional high fade. Men with curly hair can benefit from this style in several ways:

Enhanced Texture

One of the primary benefits of the curly fade men’s haircut is that it accentuates the natural texture of curly hair. This style works exceptionally well for individuals who want to showcase their curls and make them more pronounced. Here’s how it achieves this:

  • Gradual Transition: The high fade in this haircut gradually tapers the hair from longer on top to shorter on the sides and back. This transition in length enhances the contrast between the curly top and the faded sides, highlighting the curls;
  • Defined Lines: The precision of the high fade creates clean and defined lines, which further accentuate the curls. This contrast adds depth and dimension to the overall look;
  • Texture Products: To maximize the texture, you can use hair products designed for curly hair, such as curl-enhancing creams or pomades. These products can help define and separate individual curls for a more textured appearance.

Volume Control

Men with curly hair often struggle with excess volume, which can lead to a “poofy” or unmanageable look. The curly fade haircut effectively addresses this issue by centralizing and controlling the volume on the top while keeping the sides and back faded. Here’s how it achieves volume control:

  • Short Sides and Back: The high fade creates a sharp contrast between the short sides and the longer top. This contrast redirects attention to the top of the head, minimizing the appearance of excessive volume on the sides;
  • Weight Distribution: The shorter sides and back reduce the weight of the hair in these areas, preventing the hair from sticking out or puffing up. This controlled weight distribution contributes to a more streamlined and stylish look;
  • Layering: Depending on your specific curly hair type, your stylist may incorporate layering techniques to further control volume. Layers can help distribute the curls evenly and reduce bulk, resulting in a more manageable appearance.

Styling Ease

Another advantage of the curly fade haircut is its ease of styling, particularly for men with curly hair. The reduced hair on the sides and back simplifies the styling process and minimizes the risk of unruly curls. Here’s how it promotes styling ease:

  • Less Maintenance: With shorter sides and back, there is less hair to manage and style. This reduces the time and effort required for daily grooming;
  • Versatility: The curly top can be styled in various ways, such as loose curls, tight curls, or waves, depending on your preference. You can experiment with different looks while maintaining a clean and well-groomed appearance;
  • Minimal Product Use: Since the top is the focal point of the style, you can use fewer styling products, which is especially beneficial for those who prefer a more natural look. This also helps prevent the hair from feeling weighed down by excessive product.

Styling the High Fade

The high fade haircut is undoubtedly impressive, but to keep it looking fresh and stylish, consistent maintenance is key. This step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of styling a high fade haircut, from washing to maintaining the fade’s sharpness.


Washing your hair is the foundational step for any hairstyle. Proper cleansing ensures that your hair is free from dirt, oils, and product buildup. Here’s how to wash your hair for a high fade:

  • Choose the Right Shampoo and Conditioner: Start by selecting a high-quality shampoo and conditioner that are suitable for your specific hair type. There are various options available for different hair textures, including fine, thick, curly, and more. Using the right products ensures that your hair is well-prepared for styling;
  • Water Temperature: Use lukewarm water to wet your hair thoroughly. Extremely hot water can strip your hair of its natural oils, leaving it dry and brittle;
  • Shampooing: Apply a small amount of shampoo to your hair, focusing on the scalp. Gently massage it in with your fingertips, creating a lather. Pay attention to the roots to remove excess oil and buildup;
  • Conditioning: Apply conditioner to the lengths and ends of your hair, avoiding the scalp. Leave it in for a minute or two to allow it to penetrate the hair shaft and provide moisture. Rinse thoroughly with cool water to seal the cuticle;
  • Towel Dry Gently: After rinsing, pat your hair dry with a clean, soft towel. Avoid vigorous rubbing, as this can cause frizz and damage your hair.


Properly drying your hair is crucial to achieving the desired high fade hairstyle. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Towel Dry: As mentioned earlier, gently towel dry your hair to remove excess moisture. Be careful not to rub or twist your hair aggressively;
  • Hair Type Consideration: If you have curly hair, consider using a diffuser attachment on your hair dryer. This attachment helps distribute heat evenly and minimizes disruption to your curls, maintaining their shape and texture;.
  • Heat Setting: Use a low or medium heat setting on your hair dryer. High heat can be damaging and lead to frizz.

Styling Products

The choice of styling products plays a significant role in achieving your desired high fade look. Here’s how to select and use the right products:

  • Sleek Appearance: If you prefer a sleek, polished look, consider using pomades or gels. These products provide strong hold and shine, giving your hair a well-groomed finish. Apply a small amount evenly throughout your hair, working it in with your fingers or a comb;
  • Volume Boost: For added volume and texture, opt for volumizing mousses or texturizing sprays. These products help create a fuller, more textured appearance. Apply them to damp hair and distribute evenly;
  • Curly Fade: If you have curly hair and want to enhance your curls, use curl-enhancing creams. These products define and moisturize your curls, helping them hold their shape and reduce frizz.

Maintaining the Fade

To ensure your high fade haircut always looks sharp, regular trips to the barber are essential. Here’s why:

  • Trimming: The fade portion of your haircut requires precise trimming to maintain its distinct, gradual transition from short to long. Visiting a skilled barber every few weeks ensures that your fade remains crisp and well-defined;
  • Edge Up: In addition to fading, barber visits allow for precise edge-ups around the hairline and sideburns. These clean lines are essential for a polished appearance.

Popular Variations of the Men’s High Fade Haircut

Man with a High Fade Hairstyle

Men’s high fade haircut suits various hair types and can be customized to achieve different looks. Let’s explore some of the popular variations of the men’s high fade haircut:

Classic High Fade

The Classic High Fade is a timeless and versatile hairstyle that combines a neatly combed top with sharply faded sides and back. Here are some key features of this style:

  • Top: The top is typically longer and can be styled in various ways, such as slicked back, side-parted, or with a textured finish;
  • Fade: The sides and back are tapered or faded, starting high above the ears and gradually getting shorter towards the neckline;
  • Maintenance: This style requires regular visits to the barber to maintain the sharpness of the fade. The top can be styled with pomade or hair wax for a polished look;
  • Suitable Hair Type: Classic High Fade works well for straight, wavy, or slightly curly hair types;
  • Styling Products: Use hair products like pomade or clay to style the top and keep it in place.

Pompadour with High Fade

The Pompadour with High Fade is a stylish variation that combines a voluminous pompadour on top with a high fade on the sides. This hairstyle exudes confidence and a retro vibe. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Top: The top is longer and styled into a voluminous pompadour, which is achieved by brushing the hair upward and backward for height and volume;
  • Fade: The sides and back are sharply faded, creating a striking contrast with the pompadour;
  • Maintenance: Regular styling and maintenance are necessary to keep the pompadour in shape. You’ll need pomade or styling gel for hold;
  • Suitable Hair Type: This style is ideal for straight or wavy hair that can be styled into a pompadour;
  • Styling Products: Pomade, gel, or hair spray are essential for styling and maintaining the pompadour.

Buzz Cut with High Fade

For those who prefer a low-maintenance and ultra-short hairstyle, the Buzz Cut with High Fade is an excellent choice. This style combines a very short top with a high fade for a clean and minimalistic appearance. Here’s what you should know:

  • Top: The top is cut very short, often using clippers with a very short guard or even shaved for an extremely low-maintenance look;
  • Fade: The high fade on the sides and back provides a sharp and clean contrast to the short top;
  • Maintenance: This style is incredibly low-maintenance, requiring little to no styling. Regular visits to the barber for fade maintenance are essential;
  • Suitable Hair Type: The Buzz Cut with High Fade is suitable for all hair types, especially if you prefer a minimalistic look;
  • Styling Products: Generally, no styling products are required for this style.

Undercut High Fade

The Undercut High Fade is a bold and edgy variation of the high fade haircut. It features a clear distinction between the longer top and the sharply faded sides. This style is often paired with a longer, disconnected top for added contrast. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Top: The top is left longer and disconnected from the sides, creating a noticeable contrast;
  • Fade: The sides and back are high-faded, creating a strong demarcation line between the top and the sides;
  • Maintenance: Regular visits to the barber are necessary to maintain the fade and the length of the top. Styling the longer top is optional;
  • Suitable Hair Type: This style works well for those with thick and textured hair that can be styled into the longer top;
  • Styling Products: Use pomade, wax, or styling cream to add texture and hold to the longer top.


The high fade mens haircut stands out as an epitome of modern male grooming. With its versatility, especially when paired with curly hair, it’s a style that can be uniquely tailored to each individual. Whether you’re new to the style or seeking ways to enhance your current look, this guide provides a foundation to achieve your desired haircut.


Q: How often should I get my men’s high fade haircut touched up?

A: Ideally, every 2-4 weeks to maintain its sharp appearance.

Q: Is the men’s haircut high fade suitable for all hair types?

A: Absolutely! While it’s especially popular with the mens curly fade haircut, it suits straight, wavy, and other hair types too.

Q: What’s the difference between the high fade and undercut?

A: An undercut has a clear distinction between the long top and short sides. In a high fade, the hair gradually decreases in length from the top towards the sides.

Q: Can I style the top in different ways with the mens haircut high fade?

A: Definitely! The top can be buzzed, kept long, slicked back, or even styled into a pompadour.