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How To Tell Your Barber What Fade You Want

If you ask Craig for a taper fade hairstyle, I will probably ask additional questions to clarify what you mean. This is because there are many different variations, including low taper fade, mid taper fade, high taper fade, taper fade mullet, burst fade and taper fade for curly hair.

Thankfully, I’m going give you the vocabulary to describe exactly what type of haircut you need. I will also answer all the questions about this popular technique. Make sure you your taking notes, as I can’t use my crystal ball all the time. 

What is a Taper Fade?

Well, a taper fade describes a haircut that is longer on the top of the head and section of the sides tapered and nape the neck.

What Is Tapering In Barbering?

Tapering is a barbering technique that changes hair from one length to another. When it reaches the skin to blend in with it, the hair actually disappears or "fades." Tapering is so common in barbering that you will likely get one even if you don't ask for it.

Tapering can be achieved with mainly clippers but can be done with scissors. Both are usually needed to create a sharp and neat look without uneven lines or rough spots.

Taper Vs. Fade

While the terms "taper" and "fade" are often used interchangeably, they may refer to different styles. Some people use taper to describe a natural and conservative decrease in length. Meanwhile, a fade can be dramatic, abrupt or extremely short. 

How Long Does A Taper Fade Last?

The shorter the taper fade, the longer you can wait between barber appointments.

In most cases, you can expect to revisit the barber every 2-4 weeks if you want to keep your haircut pristine. If you're not too fussy about regrowth, you could hold off for up to 8 weeks.

If you want a basic taper fade, with me I charge around £15 and Keep in mind adding a beard trim or dyes this will raise the price accordingly.

Before trying a new haircut, clarify the cost to avoid any nasty shocks.

What About A Taper Fade For Curly Hair?

Not all haircuts are easy on curly or textured (afro) hair but taper fades will not be a problem. Anyone with waves, curls or coils can choose from a wide range of styles.

If you ask me for a taper fade hairstyle, I will probably ask additional questions to clarify what you mean. This is because there are many different variations, including low taper fade, mid taper fade, high taper fade, taper fade mullet, burst fade and taper fade for curly hair.

The Type Of Fades Haircuts

Tapering Neckline

If you want a low-maintenance haircut that will forgive a missed appointment or two, ask for a tapered neckline. A tapered neckline follows your natural neckline until it fades. When it grows back in, it will retain its shape and won't look as messy as other clear cut hairstyles.

A low taper fade is more on the "taper" than on the "fade" side. The scalp is gradually exposed by thinning both sides, starting close to the ears.

The low-level taper fade is ideal for beginners who don't like carrying a drastic fade where a large area above the ears is faded to show scalp skin.

Zero Fade

A "zero" fade describes hair being cut to a minimal length. Only a subtle amount is left which gives the impression of scalp stubble. (It is not a completely bald look).

0.5 Fade

A 0.5 fade is just a bit longer than a zero fade. The 0.5 fade follows the zero fade as it moves up the neckline to the top of the head and the sides where it can grow to a 2-inch taper fade.

A buzz fade describes a short haircut with shorter sides, which may be shaved bald using a razor or foil razor. The top of the head is buzzed or a uniform length.

With a mid-taper fade, you get a defined line that goes about half an inch above and behind the ears. The barber will use the clippers to decide which is the most flattering length.

The mid-taper haircut is alternative for curly hairstyles. Make it smooth around the sideburns and the neckline for a polished look.

When high taper fade haircut is what they typically have in mind. The high fade has a short back and sides, with more hair left at the top of the head which can be styled in a variety of hairstyles, for example, an Elvis or crew cut.

The fading starts as high as the temples and it can be gradual or dramatic, depending on the chosen hairstyle.

Disconnected Fade

A disconnected fade cut features longer hair on the top with an immediate disconnect instead of a gradual fade. This can offer quite a dramatic statement depending on the depth of the disconnect.

The undercut is the same as having a skin fade, but the grade shortens more suddenly leaving it in an undercut style.

This style looks great if you plan on growing your hair at the top to slick back.

Messy Fade

The messy fade is basically a mid to high fade with the top long and styled messy. This look definitely makes a man look more relaxed and casual.

Elvis Presley made the pompadour popular, and this style has endured until now, which is modernised in the pompadour fade. Make sure you have plenty of styling products ready to maintain this eye-catching look.

Taper Fade Mullet 

If you're someone who loves mullets, how about making those short sides "pop" with a taper fade mullet? We think this style will raise eyebrows for all the right —  and wrong —  reasons. Perfect for anyone who likes to be the life of the party.

A typical burst fade involves cutting a semicircle shape or diagonal section around the ear. Rather than continuing on the nape of the neck, it ends on the side of the neck. The result is a "burst" of hair along the top of the head.

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