The skin fade is a modern and stylish haircut for men who want a bold and sleek look. Also known as the zero or bald fade, the skin fade haircut can feature a high, mid or low style to suit any length and look. These bald fade haircuts can be combined with different styles to create a cool look.
You can pair the cut with a side part, quiff, comb over, pompadour or faux hawk to style a cool short sides, long hair on top hairstyle. If you’re looking for a fresh and low-maintenance cut, the skin fade may be the right choice to elevate your look.
To inspire you, we’ve compiled examples of the best skin fade haircuts. From classic to modern options, explore these popular skin fades to find the right haircut style.
- 1 What Is A Skin Fade Haircut?
- 2 Skin Fade Haircuts
- 2.1 High Skin Fade
- 2.2 Low Skin Fade
- 2.3 Mid Skin Fade
- 2.4 Skin Fade with Long Hair on Top
- 2.5 Skin Fade with Short Hair on Top
- 2.6 Skin Fade Side Part
- 2.7 Faded Pompadour
- 2.8 Skin Fade Quiff
- 2.9 Slicked Back Hair
- 2.10 Low Skin Fade with Shape Up and Long Comb Over
- 2.11 Slicked Back Hair with High Skin Fade
- 2.12 Spiked Hair with High Skin Fade
- 2.13 Side Part with Mid Skin Fade
- 2.14 Mid Skin Fade and Line Up with Short Curly Hair
- 2.15 Low Skin Fade with Brush Up
- 2.16 High Skin Fade with Comb Over and Hard Part
- 2.17 High Skin Fade with Edge Up and Brushed Back Hair
- 2.18 Faux Hawk with High Skin Fade with Shape Up
- 2.19 Low Skin Fade with Hair Design and Quiff
- 2.20 Mid Skin Fade with Modern Pompadour
- 2.21 Long Textured Slick Back with Low Skin Fade
- 2.22 Skin Fade with Hard Part Comb Over and Beard
- 2.23 Low Skin Fade with Long Hair on Top
- 3 How To Get A Skin Fade
- 4 How To Style A Skin Fade
What Is A Skin Fade Haircut?
The skin fade is a type of haircut that tapers on the sides and back to blend short hair into the skin. The skin fade haircut generally starts with longer hair on top of the head and gradually becomes shorter down the sides and back, towards the neck.
The “fade” effect is given by the gradually shorter hair length, and the overall look is a top-heavy hairstyle that highlights the styling on top. Specifically, instead of having a consistent, regular hair length all over the head, the men’s skin fade haircut allows more variation with a sleek fade into the neckline.
Variations on the bald fade mainly involve where the taper starts and the different lengths of hair, both on the top and around the sides. A low skin fade haircut can look more professional, while a high skin fade looks edgy and bold.
The happy medium offered by the mid skin fade can be perfect for business professionals who want a little of both cuts. Some hairstyles involving the skin fade also use techniques such as the disconnect to add emphasis and make the haircut more of a fashion statement.
Skin Fade Haircuts
High Skin Fade
The high skin fade is the sexy, masculine, and very short. The high skin fade haircut will taper your sides and back to look like a shaved cut. Good for men with long, medium, and short hair, this kind of fade clearly highlights the men’s hairstyle on top.
Guys with thinning or fine hair will also like that it minimizes bald spots. If you want a really short hairstyle that comes with plenty of contrast, get high skin faded sides. The sharp trendy look is fashionable, and the women in your life will swoon.
Low Skin Fade
The low skin fade is a fresh yet versatile take on the style. The low skin fade haircut starts just above the ears. Clean-cut and classy, men like low skin fades because they very gradually blend and taper the sides and back to create a cool yet understated look.
If you still want to partake in this modern haircut but need to look presentable at the office, ask your barber for a low cut skin fade. The style looks best with medium to longer hair on top, but guys can pull of short hair as well.
Mid Skin Fade
The mid skin fade starts in the middle of your sides and back to achieve a balanced look. Not too edgy yet not completely innocent, the mid skin fade haircut is the most versatile cut.
Great for little boys, teens, young men, and older guys, the skin mid taper fade works with all of the best hairstyles. Ultimately, a mid fade down to the skin will focus the eyes on the short or long hair on top, just the way a tapered cut should.
Skin Fade with Long Hair on Top
A skin fade with long hair can be styled into any of the top hairstyles for men. As the classic short on the sides, long on top haircut, the cut can be transformed into a comb over, quiff, pompadour, man bun, spikes, or faux hawk.
For a textured natural finish with healthy shine and flow, use a matte styling product. Otherwise, a high-shine pomade can give you a glossy retro look. Experiment with a bald fade and long top to see all the haircut styles you can pull off.
Skin Fade with Short Hair on Top
A skin fade with short hair can be low-maintenance and handsome. Short haircuts like the buzz cut, crew cut, crop top, side part, Ivy League, high and tight, and side swept fringe are perfect for the skin fade haircut.
Short hair on the sides and back build the necessary contrast for short hair on top. If you’re tired of styling your hair every morning, there are a number of cool short hairstyles to try with a skin fade.
Skin Fade Side Part
For a simple yet refined, classic look, the skin fade side part is a good choice. All you need to create this style is a comb and some light product with hold such as pomade, wax, or putty. To add even more hold and volume, blow your hair to the side with a hairdryer.
To style the side part fade, start with clean, towel-dried hair. Apply product and comb through your hair to evenly distribute. Then find the natural part in your hair and run your comb through, combing one side over to create the divide.
Finally, comb each side over and add any extra styling or waves as finishing touches.
If you’ve opted for slightly longer hair on top, the pompadour skin fade is a great option for you. By adding height to the front of the hair in this 50s-inspired style, your hair will look voluminous and thick.
To style a faded pompadour, towel-dry your hair until damp. Rub pomade between your hands to heat, and apply to your hair evenly. Then start blow drying your hair while running your comb up and back through the front. Use the comb or your fingers to style the details for a modern pompadour.
Skin Fade Quiff
Similar in style to the pompadour, the quiff is a beautiful hairstyle for the guy who can pull it off. You’ll want at least 2 to 3 inches of hair on top of your head before executing the style, as the length of the hair is what gives the quiff its height.
In terms of styling, the skin fade quiff is essentially the same as the pompadour. Instead of using a comb, you might want to use a bristle brush in order to give your hair more volume, texture and a natural look.
Strong pomade may be necessary to maintain the height of the quiff for a long time, but with maintenance throughout the day, it can stay impressive and tall.
Slicked Back Hair
A slicked back fade produces a look that is both trendy and casual. Whether it’s a party or first date, the high skin fade slick back can appear formal or easy-going with some simple styling.
The slick back fade haircut is easy to get and style, requiring just some pomade and a comb. Simply comb your hair straight back, and add the product to keep it in that style. For a more textured look, you can run a bristle brush over the top or simply use your hand to disrupt the comb strokes, but keeping it clean will look stylish too.
Low Skin Fade with Shape Up and Long Comb Over
Slicked Back Hair with High Skin Fade
Spiked Hair with High Skin Fade
Side Part with Mid Skin Fade
Mid Skin Fade and Line Up with Short Curly Hair
Low Skin Fade with Brush Up
High Skin Fade with Comb Over and Hard Part
High Skin Fade with Edge Up and Brushed Back Hair
Faux Hawk with High Skin Fade with Shape Up
Low Skin Fade with Hair Design and Quiff
Mid Skin Fade with Modern Pompadour
Long Textured Slick Back with Low Skin Fade
Skin Fade with Hard Part Comb Over and Beard
Low Skin Fade with Long Hair on Top
How To Get A Skin Fade
Getting a skin fade haircut should be a simple process with a good barber. The technical part of the process is the gradual buzzing of the sides using a hair clipper, so having an experience barber and a specific idea of how you want this done will help.
There are a few things you can do to make the style easier for your stylist to create. For good contrast between the fade and the longer hair on top, about 2-3 inches of hair length is ideal.
Otherwise, the most important thing to keep in mind for the bald fade is how quickly you want to fade – high, low or mid. Remember, at the bottom of the taper, your hair will be shaved.
Some want a low skin fade that only just fades at the bottom of the hair (just above the ear), and is understated for the rest of the head. Other guys prefer a high skin fade that leaves no hair on the sides.
The choice largely comes down to individual preference, but bringing along a photo of the kind of bald fade you are aiming for will help your barber get the style right.
How To Style A Skin Fade
The skin fade is one of the best and coolest men’s hairstyles now, and styling it can enhance the look. Although you won’t be styling the bald fade haircut itself, there are many different hairstyles that go with the cut.
For example, a voluminous quiff can make the look retro and natural, while a slicked back skin fade looks sharp and edgy. Personal style determines which look you choose, but the bald fade is versatile enough to wear to a range of occasions.