Taper fade haircuts never go out of style, they just get updated. The latest looks, from crops to mullets, look just as good with a taper as classic styles.
Tapers and fades have a lot in common, but they are two different things. They both work with any men’s hairstyle and can but cut low, medium, or high. Keep reading for what a taper fade is plus the most popular haircuts from around the world.
Sometimes fade haircuts are also called taper fades or tapers. Just in case, always show your barber a picture of what you want.
We’ll cover all the types of taper fades for straight, curly and Black hair. Scroll all the way to the bottom to see some tapers with beards.
Taper Fade vs Fade
There seems to be a lot of confusion about what a taper fade is. Taper fade haircuts and fades both refer to how hair is cut at the sides and back of the head. They both go from short to shorter at the neckline. Tapers and fades also both grow back in clean, compared to blocked napes or defined necklines.
The taper fade is a quick fade at the sideburns and neckline. Those areas blend right into the skin from your haircut of choice and will grow back looking clean and natural. The area behind the ear is left short and cleaned up with a defined line. That arch behind the ear is what separates a taper fade from a fade.
A fade haircut changes the hairline all the way around. Fades can be low, medium, or high but they all create a new hairline. This is all a great look because it is streamlined, focuses attention on the hair on top, and grows out clean.
Haircuts With Taper Fade
Let’s start off with a selection of the most popular tapered styles. Then we’ll get into more specific tapers and hairstyles.
1. Taper Fade
This is an ideal, if not perfect, example of a taper fade. This high taper and line up are just right for this gentleman’s hair length and head shape.
2. Very Low Taper Fade
Even if it’s very low, a tapered neckline looks great and is a completely different look than a scissor cut finish.
3. High Taper Fade
A high taper fade cuts hair short up higher while keeping the fade transition down low.
4. Taper + Fade
Sometimes it’s a fade with a taper but this time it’s a taper with a fade. Instead of eliminating this low neckline, this special style uses it to create an arch behind the ear that transitions into a fade at both ends. It looks great and looks better while it grows out.
Low Taper Fades
The most popular way to wear a fade is low.
5. Lower Taper Fade For Black Men
It takes an expert like Wes Staucet to create the slightest hint of a taper at the bottom of this blurry fade. The buzz cut with a fade may be the most popular haircut out there, but this is a close second.
6. Lowest Taper + Mushroom Crop
This taper is even lower than the last one. It’s a smooth finish to this mushroom-shaped crop style.
7. Short Taper Fade
8. How To Grow A Mullet
When you have hair goals, get a cut that will grow out the way you want it to. This cool messy crop has a quick taper at the neckline that will still look good as it gets longer. This taper fade hairstyle is also a little different because that arch behind the ear is short hair instead of shaved.
9. Low Taper
The whole transition from thick hair to short hair and then down to the skin is so clean.
10. Short Curly Hair + Low Taper
Whether it’s long hair or short, the taper is an essential part of the shape and silhouette of a haircut. These temples are faded up high for tight sides.
11. Skin Taper Fade
A taper can disappear into the skin or stand out. This fresh look does the latter with a burst shape within the sideburns and neckline.
High Taper Fades
There are two ways a taper fade can be high. One is to take that taper up higher at the temples and neckline. The other is to add a taper to a high fade. Here’s both.
12. High Taper Fade With Curls On Top
This high taper fade fades hair down to the skin at the sideburns and neckline and keeps going. It’s still a taper because of that defined line behind the ear. If you want to mix up your curly fade, try this look.
13. Medium-High Fade With Taper
14. High Taper Fade Haircut
The long top, short sides look also works with a taper. This classic cut feels modern thanks to tousled and defined curls.
15. Bald Taper Fade
The bald taper fade shows some skin. It looks really good with thick hair and this pompadour haircut.
Mid Taper Fades
When low it too low and high is too high, the medium taper fade is just right.
19. Taper + Burst Fade
The best of both worlds is this fade with a taper.
20. Medium-High Taper Fade
Without a fade, the medium taper removes hair from the temples and neckline.
21. Taper Fade with Long Hair
Taper fades work with longer haircuts too. This gentleman’s long dreads lose some weight with a mid taper fade.
22. The Edgar Cut
We wrote about the Edgar some time ago and we’re seeing it a lot in the wild lately. I like how hair cuts straights across this taper.
23. Taper + Burst Fade
This skin taper fade creates a burst effect at the neck and temples. It makes your hair on top stand out nicely and works for all hair lengths.
24. Tapered Necklines
There’s something satisfying about a really clean neckline. Keep it fresh at home by removing stray hairs but don’t touch that fade unless you know what you’re doing.
Taper Fades For Curly Hair
A rounded curly mop top is cool but not for everyone. Check out these curly top, short sides looks that end in a taper.
25. Curly Hair + Medium Taper
This cool curly cut leaves some length at the back for a connected shape.
26. Taper Fade For Curly Hair
The taper fade is a cool finish to any type of men’s haircut. It blends seamlessly into the skin at the sideburn and neck, for a stylish yet natural hairline. This one looks great with curly hair.
27. Curly Undercut + Taper
There’s that undercut we were talking about. This is close to a blowout but with a higher hairline.
28. Short Taper Haircut For Curly Hair
Curly hair also benefits from the graduation of a taper fade. Hair is long enough to curl towards the top while tapering down for a clean-cut finish. You can get this same look if you have thick hair.
29. Fluffy Edgar + Taper
Here fluffy means curly. There’s still that Edgar shape with a blunt hairline but this time it’s 3-dimensional.
30. Curly Top + Short Sides
Cut short enough, curly hair becomes straight. This is an almost equal balance of short sides and corkscrew curls.
Black Taper Haircuts
Taper haircuts keep more hair on the head than fades. With style like curls, afros and waves, more hair is better so finish them with a taper.
31. High Top + Taper Fade
Instead of a high top fade, this is a high top taper.
32. Taper Fade Afro
Finish that modern afro with a blurry taper fade.
33. Sponge Curls + Mid Taper
Similar to a blowout, this tapered cut gets extra volume from sponge curls.
34. Taper Fade + Waves
The taper fade and 360 waves contrast with the sharp lines of this line up.
Beards With Taper Fades
We know about beard fades, now here’s the bear taper.
35. Taper Fade + Waves + Beard Shape
The taper separates the beard from hair at the sideburn.
36. Low Taper + Full Beard
The defined lines of this full beard and tape up would make this face look tiny without the temple fade.
37. High Taper + Stubble Beard
For ultra short beards, the taper can be a transition from fuller hair to the beginnings of facial hair.
38. High Taper + Full Beard
This hair may be short but it is full with waves and a dense beard. This taper takes the temple up high for maximum separation between hair and facial hair.
Taper Fade vs Taper Haircuts
A taper fade and a taper haircut are two different things. Taper fades refer to the treatment of the sideburns and neckline. A taper haircut is a type of classic cut with some length all around. It’s usually scissor cut and can be a variety of lengths. The edges can have a taper fade or not.
A taper fade combines the best of both worlds by starting with longer hair that goes down to the skin in a smooth transition. This type of cut will use scissors and clippers. We’ll start with examples of taper and fade haircuts and move on to all the different ways to wear taper fades.