Even if you don’t know it by name, you’ve probably seen the brush up hairstyle in action. With its uniquely tousled appearance, it’s becoming one of the year’s most iconic mens hairstyles.

Classic taper gentlemen high volume sleek back %40adamjosephchase
@adamjosephchase/ Instagram

What is the brush up hairstyle?

With a brush up hairstyle, the hair on the top of the head is styled upward in a messy fashion. The sides and the back are cut short with either an undercut, fade, or taper. This gives a similar appearance to the quiff. Whereas only the front of the hair is styled in the quiff, the whole top is styled in the brush up hairstyle.

brushed up and swept back textured hairstyle
RomanSo / Shutterstock.com

What do I need for the brush up hairstyle?

You’ll need to make some preparations before getting a brush up hairstyle.

First, the hair on top of your head should be 2 to 4 inches long. It can work with slightly shorter or longer hair (1.5 to 4.5 inches), but 2 to 4 inches is the ideal length.

This haircut is best for straight or wavy hair. If your hair is curly, you’ll have a hard time getting the brush up hairstyle.

Even though the brush up hairstyle is so called because the hair is brushed up, you don’t necessarily need a brush. A comb will also do the job. If you have wavy hair, use a wide-tooth comb.

You’ll need some high quality hair wax (or mousse) for this style. Whereas wax will give a messy look, mousse will give volume and works best with wavy hair.

Finally, grab a hair dryer. You’re now ready for the brush up hairstyle to grace your head.

Ryan Reynolds Men's Hairstyles_1-1
Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com

How to Style the Brush Up Hairstyle

Start by applying hair wax or mousse to your damp hair. You’ll want to put a nice coat of wax on your hair. Experimentation will allow you to figure out the right amount.
As you’re applying the product, style your hair upward. Style it as if you’re spiking it, but make it messy and not defined. You can style it using your fingers and a brush or comb.

Now grab your hair dryer and point it at your forelock (bangs). Use your fingers to continue styling your hair upward. The hot air from the hair dryer and the lift from your fingers will provide the main brush up look.

After you’ve finished styling your forelock, you can move on to styling the hair on top of your head. Work backward, and repeat the lifting motions while aiming the hair dryer at the hair you’re styling. Continue in this fashion until you’ve got a rocking brush up hairstyle.

High Volume
Credits: Ryan Cullen

How to make my brush up right?

If you’re not getting a good brush up hairstyle, try styling your hair with a brush or comb instead of your fingers. Depending on your hair type and texture, you may want to use hair mousse instead of wax and vice versa. You might also want to try applying more wax or mousse as you style.

As with most hairstyles, experimentation is key. After a bit of practice, you’ll be able to achieve a great brush up hairstyle.

See the gallery below for more inspiration:
Dyed | fade, vertical by@paul_barbercode
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Sleek Brushed Dyed
Undercut + Brushed Up Fohawk
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Undercut + Brushed Up Fohawk
Undercut + Brushed Up Fohawk, by @tombaxter_hair / Instagram
Longer Faux Hawk with Brushed Up Front
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Longer Faux Hawk with Brushed Up Front
Longer Faux Hawk with Brushed Up Front, by @tombaxter_hair / Instagram
Brushed up Spiky Hairstyle
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Brushed up Spiky Hairstyle
Brushed up Spiky Hairstyle, by @andrewdoeshair / Instagram
Curly Brush Up
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Curly Brush Up and Disconnected Design
Related
Brushed up
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Modern Highlighted Brush Up
Brush up Against the Sun
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Brush up Against the Sun
brush up
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Simple Spiky Top with Tapered Sides
Casual Brush Up
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Casual Brush Up
Pocky Textured Brush Up
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Pocky Textured Brush Up
Strands Brushed Up with Neat Line Up
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Strands Brushed Up with Neat Line Up
High Volumed Top with Temple Fade
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High Volumed Top with Temple Fade
Straight Mid Fade with Straight Up Top
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Straight Mid Fade with Straight Up Top
Casual Short Strands
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Casual Short Strands
Dry Textured Thin Hair
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Dry Textured Thin Hair
Classic Brush Up with Faded Sides
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Classic Brush Up with Faded Sides
Formal Top with Sleek Fade
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Formal Top with Sleek Fade
Messy Brush Up with Low Fade
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Messy Texture with Low Fade
Taper Fade with Brush Up
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Taper with Skin Fade Blonde
Shaved Hairline with Temple Fade
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Fancy Brush Up plus Shaved Sideline
Long Brush Up with Taper
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Long Brush Up with Taper
Brushed Up Mid Fade
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Brushed Up Mid Fade
Brushed Up with Low Fade
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Subtle Low Fade
High Volume Undercut
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High Volume Undercut
High Volume Undercut, by @aaron_kiely_hair / Instagram
Spiky brushed up with line up
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Spiky Brushed up + Line up
Drastic Brushed Up Undercut
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Drastic Brushed Up Undercut
High Fade Undercut + Brushed Up Front
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High Fade Undercut + Brushed Up Front
High Fade Undercut + Brushed Up Front, by @tombaxter_hair / Instagram
Angled Brush Up
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Angled Brush Up
Brushed Up Undercut + Spiky Hair
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Brushed Up Undercut + Spiky Hair
Brushed Up Undercut + Spiky Hair, by @javi_thebarber_ / Instagram
Brushed up Medium Skin Fade
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Brushed up Medium Skin Fade
Brushed up Medium Skin Fade, by @javi_thebarber_ / Instagram
Brushed up with Undercut
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Brushed up with Undercut
Brushed up with Undercut, by @barberdeano / Instagram
High Volume Brush Up
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High Volume Finger Combed
Brushed up Spiky Hairstyle for Young Guys
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Brushed up Spiky Hairstyle
Brushed Up Skin Fade
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Brushed Up Skin Fade
Highlighted Brush Up Spikes
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Highlighted Brush Up Spikes
High Volume Brush Up with Fade
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High Volume Brush Up with Fade
Brush Up Undercut Fade
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Brush Up Undercut Fade
Brushed Up Spiky
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Shorter Brush up
Brush Up Spiky Hair
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Brush Up + Mid Fade
Brushed Up Fade
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Brush Up Fade
Brushed Classic Taper Hair
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Brush up Longer Taper
Brush Up Hairstyle for Men
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Pompadour Style Brush up
Textured Brush Up Beard
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Textured Brush up
Brush Up Side Swept Blonde
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Side Swept Brush Up
Brush Up Modern Shape
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Modern Style Brush up
Wild Brush Up Skin Fade and Glasses
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Wild Brush up Skin Fade
Messy brush up Man Hairstyle
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Messy yet Elegant
Jason-Salmon/shutterstock.com
Skin fade Texture by Braids UK
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Textured with Skin Fade
Flow Back Texture
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Flow Back Texture
Side Pushed Texture
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Side Pushed Texture
Adam Levine’s Staple Brush Up
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Adam Levine's Staple Brush Up
Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com
Long Layers Skin Fade
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Long Layers
Classic Taper and Textured Brush-Up
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Classic Taper and Textured Brush-Up
artfotodima / Shutterstock.com
Waves On Top and Hardline Design
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Waves On Top and Hardline Design
Platinum Texture Brushed
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Platinum Texture Brushed
Brush-Up and Low Fade
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Low Fade and Hardline Design
Two Strokes Design and Styled Brush-Up
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Two Strokes Design and Styled Brush-Up
Regulation Crop with Medium Fade
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Regulation Crop with Medium Fade