The Editors
Updated on June 13, 2021
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The taper fade has been a men’s cut mainstay for years. From a standard look to a creative twist, many different versions of the fade are available from your local barber.

Men’s Taper Fade Cuts

Nowadays, taper fades are not called other than the most iconic and timeless hairstyles for men. Their popularity is explained by the clean look and an element of interest they introduce into your style thanks to the gradual fade of length on the sides and in the back. Trendy fades often blend with facial hairstyles or feature side designs. Get inspiration from the classy looks below!

1. Black Hair in a Fade

Curly hair can stay natural while still being shown off in a low taper fade. This style is professional and classy, without sacrificing a bit of fun.

2. Partial Caesar Taper Fade

Combining two different hairstyles into one look is a practice that has been around for quite some time. Nonetheless when it is done right it’s worth mentioning, such as the chic half Caesar, half taper fade cut demonstrated here.

Partial Taper Fade

Instagram / @andyauthentic

3. Layered Taper Fade

The easiest way to add depth and dimension to your longer hair on the top is to simply incorporate layers throughout. Layers give the taper fade a fuller look, while also revealing the cute wavy curl pattern.

long top taper fade

Instagram / @don_rommel

4. Choppy Taper Fade

No one ever said a taper fade haircut couldn’t also be punk-inspired. If you have fairly thick hair, no need to shop it extra short, but getting a fade with a chopped top is not a bad idea. You’ll give your haircut an edgier look that is both modern and great for those who long for a little personalization in their hairstyles. You could also enhance or soften the texture by using more or less styling gel or pomade.

5. Flipped Taper Fade

With a flipped quiff your tapered cut gets a bit of pizzazz. This length is pretty short, but if you want to wear it longer, with time you will be able to sport a more dramatic slicked back hairstyle that looks equally good with an undercut and a fade.

6. Taper Fade and Handlebar Moustache

If you love the retro look of Elvis and handlebar moustache of Nick Wooster, then this style is right up your alley. The partial pompadour is not as high and voluminous as full pompadours, which makes it perfect to pair with a tapered cut.

taper fade, beard and handlebar moustache

Instagram / @cutsbyerick

7. Taper Fade for Natural Hair

Black men can always afford sporting bolder, funkier looks. Auburn hair color is a nice compliment to funky, curly twists resolving into a neat taper fade haircut.

8. High Top Taper Fade

Paying tribute to the popular 90s hip-hop haircut, here you have a classic high top fade that is paired with a neat fade. Equal parts fun and cool, it is a stylish example of combining haircuts from the past and present to create a unique look that is all your own.

9. Asymmetrical Taper Fade

The side part of this haircut is a cute accent that also performs a structural function. Besides, it’s an element introducing asymmetry into your style which always adds interest to the overall look.

side part taper fade

Instagram / @cutsbyerick

10. High Top with Stretched Hairline

This is not a modest low taper fade, it’s a style full of contrasts and attitude. High top suggests being blessed with thick hair, so if you can pull off the look, why not to make it personalized? A shaved part that continues the hairline and sections off the high top from the fade is a nice feature to add to your new hairstyle.

11. Dark Blonde Curly Taper Fade

Embrace your naturally curly hair by trying out this unique version of the taper fade. The silhouette of the cut is inverted trapezoid that lets you to have a neat cut with fairly long hair up top. For styling, finger-comb your hair in all directions.

12. Sculpted Taper Fade

Precise, clean and perfectly sculpted are the best attributes to describe just how impressive and flawless this taper fade looks. There is not a hair out of place, and the side part adds even more structure to the style.

13. Kinky Taper Fade

If you want to turn heads while also embracing your individuality, this is definitely the haircut for you. Due to the way it is cut, it can look like an asymmetric taper fade or a taper fade Mohawk.

14. Mohawk Taper Fade For a Round Face

Keeping with the traditions of a more traditional Mohawk, this version features natural, curly texture and faded undercuts. Mohawk and a clearly-defined facial hairstyle are both very flattering for a round face.

Mohawk Fade

Instagram / @l0u_da_barber

15. Highlighted Taper Fade

A few well-placed blonde highlights go a long way in adding spice to your look, as evidenced by this chic side part fade. Brushing your hair upward with a shaved side part dividing the sections with different lengths and textures, you get a statement look that can be improved only by an facial hairstyle with precise contours.

16. Curly Mohawk Taper Fade with Designs

With a taper fade if you opt to leave your hair a bit longer in the back, you get a Mohawk silhouette to your taper. Your taper fade Mohawk can be further upgraded with a square hairline and shaved designs.

17. Front-Combed Taper Fade

Leaving the front of your hair long is the perfect way to have some fun with finger-combing. With tapered sides, it is a neat hairstyle that still features your fun natural texture from quiff to crown.

taper fade with a quiff

Instagram / @patty_cuts

18. Curly Side Part Taper Fade

Shorter on the sides and longer on the top gives a more prominent, photo-ready appearance to your hairstyle. Whether you embrace your natural texture or use a curling iron, a wavy, tapered haircut looks amazing.

19. High Taper Fade with Design

If you choose to incorporate some shaved designs into your cut, it’s better to go for a high or medium fade instead of a low taper fade. You can go, for example, for some curved lines that will be rhymed with the lines of your facial hairstyle.

20. Taper Fade with V-shaped Nape

Giving a go to your natural texture as a rule offers some really impressive results. The main thing is to work on the edges properly. The angled design at the nape of the neck is just the right finishing touch for this style.

21. Side Part Taper Fade

A taper fade haircut is a great men’s style for various reasons, but one of the best is that you can style it in a few different ways. Highlighted with a stylish side part, this modern taper fade is the perfect combination of conservative and edgy.

22. Long Top Side-Parted Fade

Hair doesn’t have to be cut to the skin to be classified as a fade. You can choose to keep it long on top and style as a comb over, get closely clipped tapered sides, and add facial hair connected to your hairstyle via sideburns. It’s a trendy way to wear such a style now, but there are really plenty of ways to rock a long fade.

23. Spiked Fade

Taking some inspiration from the ever enduring Mohawk trend, this taper fade haircut features hair gelled up with the sides barely there. Add scruff to bring some distance between punk and modern chic.

24. Fading Into Unique Style

There are many pictures with fades, featuring designs that add a unique touch of creativity to the look. For this cut, a wavy line is etched into the hair at the temple line. Use some product to bring volume to the top section and further accentuate the design.

25. Lumberjack Fade

Don’t want to look trendy, but love the comfort of a fade? Go with a thick beard and leave the sides buzzed. The hair atop can do whatever you wish – any style goes with beard trends of today.

26. Long Haircut with Beard

If you have searched through images of taper fade haircuts, chances are you’ve found mostly shorter cuts. This doesn’t have to always be the case. You can still enjoy the look of a fade with long hair. Grow out hair on the top, then get the sides and the back closely clipped or faded.

27. Creative Fades for Young Men

Younger guys will really love different designs that can be etched into a fade. This zig zag pattern is unique and stunning. It utilizes a clean cut look appropriate for work or school, while still tossing in a bit of rebellion.

28. Fading for Black Hair

Just as some African-American men will long stand by their perfectly coifed afro, others stick close to a taper fade cut. Black hair works really well for a fade due to its texture, and it’s been a classic look for black men for generations.

29. Low Fading

A low taper fade cut involves the fade that begins very close to the hairline – there’s no need to get an extreme new look. This light fading looks wonderful on all hair types and face shapes, making it a winning haircut solution for many men.

30. Brushed Back Handsome

This fade involves mid length hair and carefully edged sides. With a unique angle and all around thickness, this style is popular with various ethnicities. It will work best on thick/coarse hair.

31. Fun Designs

Fades can include pretty much any type of design, not limited to shapes and even logos! Different types of hair will work well for a unique statement, so no matter what you’ve got in terms of thickness, length or hair color, you can really start a new style. Go with long hair on top and down the middle in the Mohawk form if you really want to show off your chosen design.

32. Fade with Facial Hair

Here’s a popular fade style for men of all ages. If you’re wondering what is a taper fade – this is the best example. Thicker hair on top, faded down into almost shaved sides. Facial hair evolves the idea of the look, starting off very thin and thickening around the chin.

33. Retro Fading

Incredibly popular in the late 80s and into the 90s, this cut is finding fresh fans among the younger generation. This will work best on thick African-American hair. The look can be upgraded with light facial hair sculpting.

34. Curly Natural

This light fade is one for a white guy. If you have naturally curly hair that’s too fine or flimsy for many shapes, this fade will work well for you. You can easily pull off this look if your hair is of medium to thin type.

35. Long and Straight Sleekness

Keeping hair long on top, this high taper fade involves cutting hair close to the top of the head and then letting remaining locks flow free. Add a thick yet coifed beard for a finished look.

36. Traditional Tapering

Reminiscent of a childhood class picture day, this neat and simple taper incorporates any hair type into a clean cut style the ladies will love. Look your best for a job interview or special occasion with this easy-to-wear style.

37. Creative and Seasonal

Celebrate the start of autumn with a leaf etched into the side of your hair cut – it doesn’t get much more unique than that! Of course, you can choose any image to fit the season, a special event or anything else you can dream up.

38. Sculpted and Angled

With super straight, defined edges, this classic look is very “middle of the road.” While not quite a high taper fade, it still brings dimension and style to the man’s overall appearance.

39. Sweet Spikes

This low cut is popular with Asian ethnicities, as Asian men have unique hair texture. However, it will look wonderful on a guy of any nationality. The trick here is to find a styling product that works well for you to maintain the fade all day.

40. Wild and Crazy

Sometimes, a fade cut is just a foundation for bigger and better things! In this instance, a wild and curly ‘fro gets a great base with a sculpted under layer.

41. Suave Smooth Taper

For a mens short cut that is classy and professional, have the length blend (or taper, as your barber would say) and also work with your hair’s natural waves. Be sure to keep the overall styling smooth. The extra length on top is enough to be stylish while still pleasing your mom, girlfriend, and boss.

42. Under Cut or Taper Cut?

Some guys prefer classic styles to trendy ones, such as the undercut. Men who are more conservative in nature can opt for a taper that also features longer hair up top and shorter cut on the sides but has no separation between the top and side sections. This is not your basic corner store haircut. It is special! Smooth and clean styling on medium hair that has been brushed and blow dried back…super fresh. The lower part of the haircut, especially the lines cut around the ears and nape, had better be perfect.

43. Natural Waves

Male hair can have beautiful layers too. Oh, such beautiful layers! The clean side burns are mirrored in the fade at the nape. Working with natural waves is what this look is all about. If you have a taper like this and want to transition to an undercut, you can if you grow your hair a bit longer on top.

Natural Waves

Instagram / @andrewdoeshair

44. Natural Top Fade

Naturally kinky black hair is made for high top fades! This texture provides volume and length that looks super fresh paired with faded sides. Just be sure to get regular cuts to keep the back smooth.

45. Temple Fade for Thick Hair

This cut has a cropped, modern appeal due to the smooth transition from the medium-length hair to the short and shaved back and sides. Make sure the styling product you use is workable. No need for hairspray, just something that will help mold a slight pomp.

taper fade haircut

Instagram / @mister_xclusive

Fade cuts come in so many different styles and lengths, there is certainly one that will work with your hair type and lifestyle. From a professional business look to a laid back college-inspired cut, a taper fade will stylishly accompany you through different phases of your life.

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