A fade haircut is one of the trendiest haircut techniques used to blend short hair with long hair smoothly.
The best part is that this haircut works in many different settings. You can wear it for formal occasions or just for your everyday casual style. And that is why many men choose this hairstyle as their go-to option whenever they visit their barber.
Unfortunately, not all barbers can give you the exact haircut you want.
So today, we will show you the difference between a good fade and a bad fade. This will help you to learn how to spot a great haircut. We will also answer some questions you may want to know about the fade haircut for you to fully appreciate this hairstyle.
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Signs Of A Bad Fade
Having the right fade haircut can drastically change and boost your overall style and appearance. But sometimes, fades can go wrong.
So here are the 3 signs you need to look out for to spot a bad fade haircut:
#1. Does Not Match Shape Of Head
Creating fades is an ultimate barbering skill that a good barber must need to master. It doesn’t only require a steady hand and sharp pairs of scissors. It also needs enough knowledge and good judgment to create one that matches the shape of the head and face shape.
Like your clothes and other stuff, haircuts aren’t one-size-fits-all. That is why you and your barber should know which is the best haircut for your face and head shape to avoid these mistakes.
Thankfully, there are different types of fades that you could choose from to match your head. More to come on this below.
#2. Too Long and Grows Quickly Out Of Finish
When your hair grows back quickly out of its tailored finish, it might be a sign of another bad haircut. A good haircut generally allows you to enjoy the haircut for an extended period before you set up another trim with your stylist.
For example, if it takes only less than a week for you to find any noticeable hair regrowth, then maybe it is time to ask for a shorter cut or try other barbers. A good stylist should always know how to approach a cut and predict how it will grow out while maintaining its style.
#3. Does Not Blend Unique Growth Patterns
Some guys might say that there is no way to hide your cow’s lick or stubborn hair that grows in a different direction on your head. But this is not true. Hiding them might be tricky and hard to do, but it’s not impossible.
Having a good fade haircut not only gives you a unique aesthetic hairstyle but can also be used to blend and camouflage some hair that grows at a different angle than the rest.
Find a barber that can do this for you to save money and time. Some of them might even give tips on how to style your hair to mask these patterns.
Signs Of A Good Fade
Now that we know how to spot a bad fade in a man’s head, this is the time to look for the signs of a properly done fade.
#1. Matches Your Facial Structure
There are different types of fades. And different hairstyles are better suited for different face shapes and structures. That is why you need to pick the most suitable fade haircut, depending on your facial structure.
For example, if you have a round head or oval face shape, the low fade is perfect for you as the closely-cropped sides help to slim the head down. You can also pair it with a quiff or pompadour to further elongate the face for a more balanced overall look.
Fades are also perfect for guys with beards and sideburns. Wearing a beard can accentuate the features of your face.
#2. Matches Color Of Your Scalp
Before getting a fade haircut, you must consider the color of your scalp. If your scalp color differs from your neck and face, you should not opt for low and high fades, as these fade haircuts are best for people with the same skin tone.
The same skin tone of your neck or face and scalp color is necessary to highlight your facial features. But if they are different, you might need to consider trying a traditional fade or a scissor fade for a much better appearance.
#3. Matches Thickness Of Your Hair
If your fades can complement your hair’s thickness and consistency, then that might be a sign of a good fade haircut. For example, Harry Jowsey’s haircut fade perfectly matches his curly top hair.
Low and high fades look good on guys with thick, dense hair. But if you have straight hair or thinning hair due to a hair loss problem, achieving a good faded-cut might be difficult to pull off.
For men with thinning hair, your barber would most likely recommend other haircuts or will advise you to fix your hair loss problems using hair growth supplements.
Types Of Fades: Low vs Mid vs High Fade
Before getting a fade haircut, you should know the difference between these fades to know what can fit you the most. Generally, there are 3 types of faded hair cuts that men can choose from. Here they are:
In a low fade cut, the fade line that blends short hair and longer hair starts right above the ears. The hair at the bottom side is completely shaved, giving you a simple yet stylish-looking hairstyle.
This haircut is perfect for people who are looking for a smooth and clean look. It blends beautifully with any hairdo and offers you more freedom with how you like to style your hair.
For a mid-fade cut, the taper line from short hair to long hair usually starts near your temples. Also known as the medium fade haircut, this cut sits between the low and high fade. It is considered the most versatile and best-looking fade type. It provides a sharp contrast between shorter and longer hair.
This is the best pick for guys who want a low-maintenance professional look that you can work with different hair length and styles on top of the head.
Men usually choose a mid-fade cut because it doesn’t add width at the sides. This hairstyle will give your hair the appearance of structure with very light styling.
In the high fade cut, the taper line from short hair to long hair usually starts right above your temples and the top of your ear. The sides are cut off or kept very short, which creates a bold and eye-catching haircut.
This sleek and modern cut can complement different lengths and hair types, such as straight, wavy, and curly hair.
This type of fade creates a striking look that pairs nicely with some of the hottest hair trends today, such as the slicked-back and faux hawk hairstyles.
Here is a video explaining the difference between low vs mid vs high fades.
What To Tell Your Barber For A Fade Haircut
If you think you can rock this hairstyle, then this is the right time to go to your favorite barber. But before you ask them to create this haircut for you, here are the things you need to do when ordering a fade haircut:
Before going to your barber, you must know what kind of fade you want to achieve. So doing research is the first thing you need to do to fully understand the different types of fades and know which would best fit you.
As we said earlier, there are different fades that you can choose from. The best fade haircut for you would most likely depend on your face shape, hair texture, and personal preference.
In researching, you might also consider the best hairstyle you want to partner with your fades. There is a wide range of ways to style a faded haircut, so research for the best.
#2. Communicate Your Personal Style
When you go to your barber, you need to come in with specific instructions and details on what you want them to do to your hair. When it comes to the fade, you need to tell your barber exactly which fade you want.
And for the length of the fade, you can go as short as possible. Some guys prefer bald or skin fade, which basically requires your barber to take the guard off the clippers. But if you want to play it safe, start with number 1 above your ears and then transition to a number 2 higher up on the sides of your head.
#3. Show A Picture
If you want to avoid mistakes and get the hairstyle you originally wanted, take a picture and show it to your barber. You can search online for a picture of celebrities with different hairstyles that can be partnered with a faded haircut.
In choosing a picture, make sure you pick somebody with a similar hair texture and head structure so that the barber can cut the hair the way you want.
What Fade Looks The Best?
Now that we know the different types of fades, it is time for us to look for the best hairstyle to pair with your fades. Although it can be partnered with most hairstyles, we summed up a short list of the go-to options for modern men of today. Here they are:
#1. Low Drop Fade With Pompadour
The spectacular combination of the classic pompadour and stylish low fade gives birth to this stunning low-drop fade pompadour that can give every man an instant jaw-dropping look.
This haircut would surely fit modern gents who want to recreate the traditional style for a much classier impression.
#2. Buzz Cut With Quick Fade
Buzz cut with fade is a perfect example of a sleek and brisk-looking hairstyle. An ideal haircut for men who want a low-maintenance haircut. It offers the perfect balance between style and simplicity and the fashion and function of modern haircuts.
#3. Burst Fade
Burst fade is one of the most daring variations of fades today. This fade tapers the hair around the ear and down on your neck for an all-around fade. A versatile haircut that allows you to add it to any men’s hairstyle, regardless of your hair length and texture.
Fade Haircut Frequently Asked Questions
A zero fade haircut is a fade hairstyle that leaves little to no hair near the base of the neck. And like the other fades, the hair on top is long and gets shorter as you get closer to the ears.
All fades, whether good or bad, would generally last for at least 1 week before hair growth starts to get noticeable.
If you’re looking for a safer and less daring look, a taper would be the best for you. But if you want to add some edge and boldness to your haircut, consider getting a fade.
Putting It All Together
And we are done! We hope that you have found this article helpful and answered some of the questions you want to know.
Now that we know how to spot a good fade and a bad fade, it is time for us to learn more about the curtain hairstyle that you can pair with a fade haircut.
You can check our article about the best middle-part hairstyles here.
Fact Checked by our Director of Dermatology – We know that understanding how your skin and hair work can seem scary, so my team and I devote our time to thoroughly researching every single topic and product we write about. We hope you find our reviews helpful and informative.
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