The hard part is a modern spin on an age old classic — the side part (The Side Part Haircut: a Classic Style for Gentlemen). The side part divides your hair into two sections, along either of the natural ridges at the top corners of your head.

Slick Swept Zero Fade Hard Part
Credits: Braid Barbers

While the side part typically involves styling the hair on either side of the ‘part’ in opposite directions, the hard part trims the hair right down to the scalp. Typically, the sides are left quite short with this cut, while the top is kept at a moderate length. This gives your facial features an incredible amount of definition, hence its popularity with all those who sport sharp face shapes.

You might also hear this cut referred to as the “razor line” or “side part line”, describing the final appearance of the hard parting.

Hard Part Pompadour
Credits: Braid Barbers

How to get the Hard Part

The hard part isn’t really a great cut to do at home (all the less so after a few drinks!), even with the help of a friend. This is because the actual parting requires that the hair be shaved right down to the skin, which is very risky — one small movement and the only fix could be trimming all your hair off!

As for the barber/hairdresser route, simply go in and ask for a ‘hard part’, or any of the other names mentioned above. If there’s any confusion, you can always show your hairdresser a photo of the final look you’re trying to achieve.

slick back side part anthonythebarber916
@anthonythebarber916 / Instagram

As for the length of the hair, feel free to choose whatever you want, or ask your barber for suggestions. The Haircut Inspiration is always a great place to find different cut ideas, so do your research first!

The rest is quite simple — just try to sit still when your hairdresser is hard at work on the parting…

hard part 9 e1534821974831
@hairbyharley / Instagram

How to style the Hard Part

As you’ve surely guessed by now, the ‘hard part’ isn’t really a haircut on it’s own, but more the name given to styles involving that clean, sexy parting. As such, there are no requirements or strict guides for styling a hard part.

The most common route — and a fool proof one at that — is simply styling your long-ish top hair away from the parting with your hair product of choice (e.g. a gel or pomade). Your sides shouldn’t really be long enough to warrant any styling, so just try to even out any tufts that may form.

Another popular alternative is combing all of your top hair back, while still letting the sides run with their natural grain.

side part tonisaura_barbershop
@tonisaura_barbershop / Instagram

Styles/Cuts for the Hard Part

Of course, everyone knows that you’re free to do whatever you want with your hair — but that isn’t really too useful when looking for tried and tested styles. Here are a few suggestions for haircuts or hairstyles that can be coupled with a hard part:

  • The Undercut is, well, a cut, that just happens to work wonderfully with a hard part, and a tad of confidence. Naturally, we’ve written about this incredibly popular haircut in another article (A Complete Guide to the Undercut Hairstyle).
  • The Flat Top (The Flat Top Hairctut) can also be styled with a hard part, giving an awesomely unique retro look.

We’ve collected a few images of hard part haircuts and styles that really work, in our honest opinion. Take a look below and you’ll save yourself some time searching for inspiration for this particular effect.

The Perfectly Twisted Top with Thin Hard Parted Fade
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The Perfectly Twisted Top with Thin Hard Parted Fade
Tapered High fade and Hard Part
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Tapered High fade and Hard Part
Elongated Strands
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Elongated Strands
Side Hard Part
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Side Hard Part
hairstyles for men with round faces
5/36
Invisible but Low Key Thin Part with Wavy Top
Related
Vivid Hard Part with Side Swept
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Vivid Hard Part with Side Swept
hard part
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Informal Version of Regulation Cut
Hard Part + Mid Skin Fade
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Hard Part + Mid Skin Fade
Hard Part + Mid Skin Fade, by @ambarberia / Instagram
Disconnected Hard Side Part with Taper Fade
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Taper Faded Side Swept
Strictly Gelled Hard Part
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Strictly Gelled Hard Part
Blonde Side Swept with Fade
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Blonde Side Swept with Fade
Inverted Elephant Trunk with Faded Sides
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Inverted Elephant Trunk with Faded Sides
Layers with Hard Part
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Layers with Hard Part
Fine Part with Side Comb Quiff
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Fine Part with Side Comb Quiff
Sober Pompadour with Hard Part
15/36
Sober Pompadour with Hard Part
Side Swept Hard Part
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Clean Side Swept with Skin Fade
Brushed Back Undercut
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Hard Part Brushed Back Undercut
Pushed Back Quiff with Temple Fade
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Pushed Back Quiff with Temple Fade
Undercut Hard Part with Tapered Sides
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Undercut Hard Part with Tapered Sides
Classic Taper Fade with Mild Line Up
20/36
Classic Taper Fade with Mild Line Up
Skin Fade Hard Part
21/36
Skin Fade Hard Part
SIde Swept Taper Fade
23/36
SIde Swept Taper Fade
hard part
24/36
Hart Part + Side Swept
Hard Part Line Up
25/36
Line up Light Fade
hard part
26/36
Drop Fade Hart Part
hard part
27/36
Hart Part + Texture
Razor Part Loosely Styled Pompadour
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Razor Part Loosely Styled Pompadour
hard part
30/36
Hart Part + Neat Comb Over
hard part
31/36
Extended Hart Part
Hard Part Slicked Back
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Business Style
hard part
33/36
Hart Part + Quiff
hard part
34/36
Hart Part + Pompadour
hard part
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Military Hart Part
Taper Faded Side Brushed Line Up
36/36
Hart Part + Taper Fade