Michael Jordan’s Short Haircut
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40 Iconic Haircuts for Black Men

From fades to braids, we've got you covered.

written by Shane McCarthy

Historically, black haircuts and styles stem from function and symbolism. Who would have thought that the most common hairstyles, such as box braids, dreadlocks, and afro, were derived from ancient Egypt – as seen in drawings and hieroglyphics? Dreadlocks, which were thought to have originated from the Rastafarian and Jamaican culture and became popular in the 20th century, were found in Hindu scriptures that were said to be written about 2,500 years ago. Many figures in India’s history wore the “jaTaa” – which translates to wearing twisted locks of hair.

Knots and braids for women were not just on display, these signify tribal association and marital status, especially in West and South Africa. Agriculture and order were depicted through cornrows on the hair and were worn by those working in the same sector. As time went by, cornrows were worn because it was practical with hard labor (for those who fell into slavery) and also as a homage to their home.

This is probably one of the reasons why cultural appropriation exists and is something that is currently debated especially for public figures. Iconic haircuts for black men and women are deemed iconic because there’s so much history enveloping each style. And although times have changed so much, there is still a strong pull between hair and culture.

But that doesn’t mean that black men haven’t experimented on haircuts these days. There are many versatile haircuts for black men to create all kinds of looks. From clean looks to long dreadlocks, box braids to tall afros, one can wear their hair as long as they are comfortable with it. Of course, once you decide upon a cut, ask your stylist how much daily maintenance it will require. Just remember that each head of hair differs and may require unique types of care to ensure that you look your best.


What is the most attractive hairstyle on a black man?

Though the hair is a crowning glory for most black men, having a fade is one of the most attractive hairstyles they can wear. For one, a fade can be combined with so many different tops (a fade with an afro, a fade with short curls, a fade with a twist, a fade with an almost bald cut, a fade with dreadlocks, etc.). The fade clears the face and draws focus on their facial features, enhanced by the style on the top.

Shane McCarthy is the Content Director for Capillus, the world’s first, clinically-proven, FDA-cleared laser cap to treat hair loss. Shane works to share informative and engaging content based off of the struggles and prevention of adult hair loss and thinning. In his free time, he enjoys spending time out on the water wakeboarding and fishing.