13 Best High Taper Fade Hair Looks for Men

Updated on January 1, 2024
Tatiana Cooper By Tatiana Cooper
Tatiana Cooper

Expert writer, copywriter, and well-versed beauty and wellness enthusiast.

Table Of Contents

    High taper fadePIN

    13 Best High Taper Fade Hair Looks for Men

    Did you ever think you would hear the two words high and faded in the same sentence when referring to hair? Well, now you have.

    This high taper fade is the ‘it’ haircut for people with short hair looking to clean up the edges and look sharp. The great thing about this haircut is that it can be done on any hair type and works for all occasions. It’s professional enough for a business environment but also cool and sleek enough for someone young and hip.

    Before reading further, consider whether you are a good candidate for a high taper fade. Check out the table below to discover a few things worth considering.

    Things To Consider Before Getting High Taper Fade Description
    Personal lifestyle Depending on your lifestyle, like being a lawyer vs. a musician, you may want a different high taper fade style or a different fade in general that suits your life.
    Bring inspiration It’s always worth it to take the time to find images of a high taper fade that resembles something similar to what you want. Showing those images to your hairstylist will make it more likely to turn out how you envision it.
    Hair type Depending on your hair type, you may want a different taper fade. The thicker your hair, the higher we suggest going. The thinner your hair, the lower we suggest keeping the fade. The lower the fade, the less hair you are removing.
    Determining lengths Since a high taper fade has many fading areas, you can have your hair at many lengths. Consult your stylist on what they think suits you and your hair best.
    Head shape Choosing a fade that works best for your head shape is essential. The higher your fade, the more head will show. A low taper fade might suit you best if you have a larger head.

    What Is a High Taper Fade Haircut?

    A high taper fade is a haircut typically worn by men, where the hair is gradually trimmed shorter along the sides of the head and longer at the top. The fade starts around the temples and gets shorter lower down to the edges of the hairline.

    This hairstyle is super popular for its versatility. People can choose from many variations and styles, such as a low taper fade and a mid taper fade. You can add fun designs to your high taper fade to elevate things further.

    You can add designs to your high taper fade like:

    • Lightning
    • Starts
    • Swirls
    • Cross
    • Wings
    • Heart

    How To Do a High Taper Fade

    Before deciding to do a high taper fade, which style best suits you and your hair type is worth considering. The chart below shows which high taper fade styles are best for thicker and thin hair types.

    High Taper Fade for Thin Hair High Taper Fade for Thick Hair
    • High taper fade short hair
    • High taper fade comb over
    • High taper fade with designs
    • High taper fade waves
    • Afro high taper fade
    • High taper fade mullet
    • High taper fade with designs
    • High taper fade with braids

    The first part of doing a high taper fade at home is ensuring you have all the proper equipment and are prepared.

    Before cutting the hair, there are three steps:

    1. Purchase professional-grade clippers
    2. Clean the clippers with a spray of rubbing alcohol – even if they are brand new
    3. Oil the blades before using them – it helps prevent nicks, cuts, and razor burns

    Knowing the different guard sizes and how much hair they will trim will also be helpful. Check the chart below for information on different guard sizes used on your clippers for high taper fades.

    Guard Size For Low Taper Fade Inches MM
    #0.5 1/16″ 1.5mm
    #1 1/8″ 3mm
    #1.5 3/16 4.5mm
    #2 1/4 6mm
    #3 3/8 10mm
    #4 1/2 13mm

    Now that you are locked and loaded with information, it’s trimming time.

    What you’ll need:

    1. Professional-grade trimmers
    2. A comb
    3. At least two different guard lengths
    4. A spray bottle (optional)
    5. Hair clips
    6. Scissors
    7. One-blade razor (optional)

    Step #1

    The first step is to ensure the hair is ready to be trimmed. Give your locks a good spray of water to dampen them, or jump in the shower and wash your hair.

    Step #2

    The correct guard size is crucial to the high taper fade. We suggest picking two to three guard lengths for a high taper fade. Your professional-grade clippers should have come with different-sized guards. The higher the guard number, the longer the hair length will be, so we suggest starting higher and working your way down.

    Step #3

    Choose where you want your fade to start. A high taper fade usually begins at the temple, but if you want a low taper fade, start below the ear, and if you wish to do a mid-taper fade, begin between the temple and the ear.

    Another essential thing to consider before you start is your hair type. A taper fade curly hair look can be different than on someone with straight hair because it will get short as your curly hair dries. Just keep that in mind when you are trimming.

    Step #4

    To be safe, section off the top portion of hair so you don’t accidentally trim any strands that fall into your trimming area. You can use a hair clip to keep it on the top of your head if need be.

    Step #5

    Now that you are all set, it’s time to turn on those clippers. When you use the clippers, move them vertically.

    Step #6

    Move the clippers sideways along your chosen fade line.

    Step #7

    Make sure you use a steady hand and move in small sections to avoid mistakes.

    Step #8

    Once you’ve shaved down the high taper fade, you will likely want to switch the guard to be a bit lower so you can trim the hair further down a bit shorter. The hair in the fade shouldn’t be all the same length; instead, get shorter gradually from where you started to the bottom of your hair.

    Step #9

    Once you are happy with how short and faded things look, go in for one final cleanup with the clippers-over-comb method. Just place the comb in your hair and use the clippers to trim any hair sticking out.

    Step #10

    This step isn’t necessary but will help create cohesion. Trim the top of the hair you clipped up earlier to ensure it’s not too long. High taper fades suit shorter hair, so we recommend a good trim.

    Final Touches

    If you thought you were finished, think again! These last steps aren’t necessary, but they are for our perfectionists out there. This would also be the perfect time to use that one-blade razor and add some designs.

    To ensure everything looks perfect, follow these steps:

    1. Shave the bottom of the hair with a beard trimmer or unguarded clippers for a close shave.
    2. Using the clippers and a guard, blur any visible lines that may remain from when you switched guards.
    3. Remember to clean up the neck area!

    High Taper Fade Black Male

    You have come to the right place if you have thick coily hair that needs some cleaning around the edges.

    People of black descent typically have thick and luscious locks that take time and patience to style. If you relate and seek a way to temporarily and efficiently style your hair, the high taper fade will be your best bet.

    The high taper fade will help keep the edges clean and thin out the hair if you have a lot of it.

    High Taper Fade Curly Hair

    A high taper fade can be done on any hair type, including curly hair. We recommend this haircut for people with curly hair because it will help contain your swirls and twirls that we all know can often have a mind of their own.

    The one thing we will note about the high taper fade curly hair look is that sometimes if you have extremely curly hair, you must go very short with your fade, or else it may look funny.

    High Taper Fade Straight Hair

    If the flatness of your straight hair is bumming you out, turn that frown upside down cause we have the next thing to bring some life back to your strands. The high taper fade straight hair look will instantly give your hair an exciting appeal. You can add some fun designs to take things up a notch.

    High Taper Fade Dreads

    If your dreadlocks are getting in the way, becoming too heavy, or you want to switch things up with your hair, the high taper fade can help you achieve those things. Not only will you have to remove some of the dreads from your head, but you are switching things up and giving yourself a clean new look.

    High Taper Fade Waves

    If you already have waves in your hair but want to make them pop, the high taper fade will do the trick. The high taper fade will help clean up around the edges and make everything look clean and concise. In other words, you’ll be looking fresh as hell.

    If you don’t know what waves are but are intrigued, it is a hairstyle usually for people with curly or coily hair. The hair is brushed or combed and then flattened to create a pattern similar to ripples on water. It’s a way to keep the hair at bay.

    Afro High Taper Fade

    The high taper fade will do the trick if you have extra hair that needs some slimming down. An afro can sometimes have a mind of its own, and if you’re experiencing that, you may feel the need to give it a trim to keep it all together and clean-looking.

    High Taper Fade Short Hair

    A high taper fade looks great on any hair type, including short hair. We suggest you get a high taper fade if you have short hair, making everything look sharp and clean. If you have long hair, you can still get a high taper fade, but we suggest looking into a low or mid taper fade for better results.

    High Taper Fade with Design

    There’s rarely anything exciting about getting your hair cut. Sure, you look good, and it can feel like a fresh start, but asides from that, there’s nothing over-the-top fun when you head to the salon. But what if you got a high taper fade with designs (or even an eyebrow slit?).

    If you want to add excitement to your salon visit and new hairdo, ask your barber if they will trim some designs into your fade for a unique look. With a few snips and trims here and there, your barber can take a classic fade and turn it into a trendy hairdo. Trimming some fun designs can elevate your haircut, style, and appearance.

    If you are curious to know how to achieve a high taper fade with designs, you might want to know what tools your barber might use, such as:

    • Professional grade razor
    • Sharp one-blade razor
    • Hair stencil

    Here are a few of our favorite designs you should give a whirl.


    If your barbers got a steady hand, this one should only take a second. Plus, the outcome looks amazingly cool if we say so ourselves.


    Everyone loves a star shape. They’re cool to look at and can mean whatever you want them to. This high taper fade with a star design will elevate your taper fade to the next level. If you use this photo as inspiration, ask for the lines behind it, so it looks like a shooting star!



    Adding swirl designs to your high taper fade look just discrete enough that they can go unnoticed as they aren’t a recognizable shape, but also just distinct enough to give you a unique-looking trim that will make people want to follow suit. Plus, this haircut isn’t just for men; it’s for everyone!


    If you are dedicated to your faith, what would show more dedication than getting a cross trimmed into your hair? Forget wearing cross necklaces, and start getting them cut into your hair.

    Zohna Tip

    If you want to create cohesion and a unique look, get some designs trimmed into your beard.


    This is another one for our faithful friends out there. These angle wings are extraordinarily intricate and require professional hands to get them done. They are unique and beautiful, perfect for representing and paying respects to your guardian angels.


    Last but not least is the most classic design, a heart. Show your love for love by getting a heart shaved into your high taper fade. If this haircut doesn’t help you find a love interest, we’re not sure what will!

    High Taper Fade Comb Over

    If you have thinning hair, a high taper fade comb over may be your next go-to look.

    The comb-over is excellent for helping to hide any balding at the top of the head, while the fade will help to bring back some life.

    Adding a high taper fade to the sides of your head will help create the allusion of a few noticeable changes to the thinning areas of the head, such as:

    1. Texture
    2. Dimension
    3. Thickness

    High Taper Fade Mullet

    If you have a mullet that needs a trim but can’t part with it, we suggest a high taper fade. The fade will clean up the edges for a crisp, clean look while allowing you to keep the main attraction, aka business, in the front and party in the back!

    High Taper Fade White Male

    Caucasian men typically have thinner and straight or wavy hair. This high taper fade look is for you if you resonate with this hair type or ethnicity. However, there is no difference between this high taper fade and any other mentioned. A high taper fade can be done on any hair type. Therefore it doesn’t matter what you or your hair looks like.

    High Taper Fade with Beard

    If you have decided to get a high taper fade but are unsure how to or if you should incorporate your beard, we’ve got you covered. We suggest you trim your sideburns in front of your ear down to the same length of the hair behind the ear or right above it. This will create a consistent look.

    Other people sometimes trim the area above the ear super sort while keeping a distinct sideburn. Either option looks great paired with a high taper fade; it just depends on your preference.

    High Taper Fade Braids

    If you wear braids often and want to accentuate them, we have no better suggestion than getting a high taper fade. You allow the entire focal point on the braids by fading any surrounding hair that won’t be included in your braid.


    • How Much is a High Taper Fade?

      You won’t be able to find one set price for a high taper fade.

      The price depends on a few factors, such as:

      • Where you live
      • The barber
      • The salon
      • The fade you want (designs or no designs, etc)
    • High Taper Fade vs. Low Taper Fade

      There isn’t much difference between a high taper fade vs. a low taper fade. But, the most crucial difference is where the fades begin. A low taper fade starts lower, usually below the ears. A high taper fade starts way above the ears, around the temples, removing much more hair.

    • Can You Fix A High Taper Fade?

      If you want to fix your high taper fade, it first depends on the problem. If things look uneven, it’s easy to return with your clippers and even things out. But, if you cut the hair too short, for example, there isn’t much you can do except wait for your hair to grow. You can take hair supplements and do daily scalp massages to help stimulate hair growth.

    Get Faded!

    If your hair is unorganized and you are reading this, you no longer have an excuse to avoid getting a trim. The high taper fade will trim you back to shape in no time, leaving you confident and ready to take on the day, no matter your style.