Tattooed Man Cutting Hair With a Clipper

What Is It

A razor fade uses a straight edge to shape the edges and cleanly shave the bottom of the fade; hence, the name. It is different from the conventional fade haircut. The reason is that the traditional fade makes the shaved portion relatively low, often just at the level of the ears. You must also shave using high-quality hair clippers for fades without a guide.

Another thing that can describe the razor fade is that it has the shaved portion starting much higher, often 2 to 3 inches above the ears and level at the back. Also, barbers often use straight razors, resulting in a fade that tapers from very thin hair to clean-shaven. This haircut is ideal for those who want a clean look that can go well in any environment and situation.

17 Most Popular Styles


As the name suggests, the taper of a fade haircut starts high on the head. It then quickly fades to a clean shave. Often, the shaved part begins around 2 to 3 inches above the ears or just above the temples. You will notice that below that cleanly shaved. This is an excellent look if you like styling your hair high, like a pompadour or an updo.


Compared to the high fade, the shave starts lower in the low razor fade. The shave could begin at the cheekbone and be used to clean up around the ears. This is just like a regular fade. However, you will notice the lines around the ears and neck being faded to give a softer look.


This style of razor fade has a bit of the sensibility of the low razor fade but also a bit of the extremeness of a high fade. The shave starts at around eye level or anywhere below the temples. This cut looks clean and stylish, giving it a lot of versatility.


The classic pompadour goes well with high-top fades for added volume, giving the illusion of more height. The sides and back are kept short, but the top is long and has volume, especially going to the front. The hair can either be hard-parted or kept a bit messy, but the important thing is that the front is styled up high using mousse or hair wax.


This is the ideal choice for men with thin or thinning hair. Start with a high razor fade and keep as much of the volume of the top as possible. Hiding the problem spots is easier since most hair volume is at the top.

Caesar Cut

With its short and rugged textured top, the Caesar cut works well with a high or medium fade because they shift the eyes upward. This also highlights the shape of the Caesar haircut, giving it a clean and more pronounced look. This is a preppy haircut and because ivy league haircuts show refined taste, you will impress many people just by sporting this cut.

Comb Over

Although men’s most popular comb-over hairstyles do not use a fade, it gives it a modern and stylish twist. The combover has always had a bad rep for being the style of choice for men with thinning hair.

However, it is a stylish hairstyle when done correctly. You can combine it with a high fade to make it easier to hide thinning hair. With that, the combover is a more viable hairstyle for men suffering from male pattern baldness.

Young Man With Modern Comb Over Hairstyle


Burst fades stand out in the crowd, which is why it is popular nowadays. The burst fade tapers around the ears and down the neck, giving it a well-rounded fade. Using a razor to provide this mid-fade treatment makes the burst fade more profound.


The tapered razor fade has sharper lines compared to the conventional taper. The main reason behind this is that it uses a straight razor to shave the ends down to the skin. The taper can start as high or as low as you want.

Slick Back Fade

You can start with a medium or high razor fade undercut. The most crucial part is that you have to keep the top long. After that, you must use specific hair products to slick back the hair.

High and Tight

If you are looking for a haircut that you do not need to style every time you go out, the high and tight razor fade is for you. It just requires getting a high razor fade and keeping the top cropped close to the scalp.

Paired With a Beard

If you have a beard, try a beard fade to accompany your razor fade. The only thing to do would be to fade the beard to make it look natural. If the beard starts abruptly, it will look like you just stuck it on your face.

Spiky Textured

This hairstyle can work with a high, medium, or low razor fades, but you should keep the top short. Use hair products like mousse or wax to give it more texture. This is great for people who are always on the go as it takes just minutes to style.

Brush Up

This hairstyle is kind of an in-between a pompadour and a slick back. You can do this with medium-length hair using a bit of hair product.

Hard Part

The hard part razor fade gives off a highly professional look. You can go with a high fade if you like. However, it looks better in most men with a medium fade. You can achieve the hard part look using a smooth mousse or hair gel and a fine comb to part your hair.

Tight Fringe

If you want a tight fringe, you must cut the top of your head a bit longer, or at least just the bangs. That way, it can hang in front of your face a bit.

Faux Hawk

A high razor fade works quite well with a high razor fade. Unlike a proper mohawk, you do not need to leave just a thin strip of hair on top. You can keep the top long. However, the middle should be longer than the sides. Style your hair roughly by spiking your hair in the middle.

How to Get 

Step 1 – Cut the sides short

Get your clippers and cut the sides of your head to your intended final length. Usually, you should use the smallest guard.

Step 2 – Define the edges

Take the guard off the clipper and define where the edge of the fade will start. For a high fade, it should begin above the temples. For a low fade, it only has to be around the ears.

Step 3 – Shave below the line

Take your straight razor and shave below the line you made using your clipper. Be careful not to shave against the grain to prevent ingrown hairs.

Step 4 – Fade the edges using clippers

Using progressively thicker guards and settings on your clippers, proceed to fade the edges of the fade.

Pensative Young Man With Faded Pompadour Hair

How to Maintain 

Step 1 – Shave daily

The appeal of the razor fade is the clean-shaven parts. This means you should maintain them by shaving the sides and back of your head every day. You can still use a safety razor if you are not confident about using a straight edge.

Step 2 – Don’t shampoo every day

Not only will daily shampooing dry out your hair, but it will also do the same to the exposed scalp. Instead of shampooing, rinse your hair with water and then use a hydrating conditioner that contains the best vitamins for a full head of hair after.

Step 3 – Use mild hair products

It is not advisable to style your hair into a pompadour every day. You will do quite a lot of damage due to the overuse of hair products. If you are using hair products, choose those that are not harsh on the hair and scalp.

Step 4 – Rinse off hair products 

Do not sleep with hair products still in your hair. As soon as you get home, shower and thoroughly rinse your hair. If you use heavy products like pomade or hair gel, you might need to use a bit of shampoo.

Step 5 – Get a trim after a couple of weeks

Even though you shave the sides and back of your head daily, the other parts of the fade will continue growing. If you want to retain the crisp lines and the gradient of your hair, go back to your barber every two weeks or so, depending on how fast your hair grows.


How long do fade haircuts last?

Human hair grows at an average of half an inch every month. This might not seem like much, but if you are dealing with fades, a week or two of hair growth is enough to erase the fade.

What is the difference between skin fades and razor fades?

Skin and razor fade look identical, so much that you cannot tell the difference. The only difference between the two styles is that razor fades use a straight edge to fade the hair. On the other hand, skin fades can use safety razors or hair clippers without the guard.

Can you get hurt while getting a razor fade?

You will be using a straight edge without a guard to shave the hair from the sides and back of your head, so there is always that possibility of injury. You can also draw blood if the blade accidentally scrapes a bump on your skin. There is also a risk for razor burns if the straight-edge blade is not sharp enough.

How do you maintain a fade?

You can use a regular safety razor to touch up the shaved parts of your fade. If you have premium electric shavers for sensitive skin, you can use them to shave as well. It is not advisable to touch the lines as you can easily mess them up.

However, the only real solution is to get your haircut retouched by your barber every two or three weeks. After a week or so, the fade will not look as impressive as the day you got it.

Is razor fade the same as a bald fade?

Technically, razor and bald fades are the same. Just like what made it different from skin fades, the difference between the razor and bald fades are the tools used to achieve the final look. You need to use the world’s best straight razor shaving kit to give your fades the cleanest possible shave.