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25 Short Sides & Long Top Haircuts – The Best Of Both Worlds

How to mix business and pleasure.


25 Slides

A hairstyle with short sides and a long top can be a sort of a middle ground between long hair and short hair. It’s a way to bridge the world of the rock star with the world of the clean-cut, man of success. Many have erroneously attributed this to the mullet, with the saying business in the front, party in the back. While much of that saying holds true, most would agree that nowadays the mullet is all party, all the time.

These next 30+ looks will show you how the modern man mixes business and pleasure stylishly.

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Tossed Semi Curly Top with Faded Sides

The classy and hippie version of the long top with tossed top makes this one quite a unique blend. The sides are taper faded with low fade into the temple which adds to the clean shaved look. The fringe on the right makes it a bit trendy but not too much to take away the neat look of it.

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@luiiisc_ / Instagram

Messy Pomp and Handle Bar Mustache

This right here is a whole vibe. From the handle mustache to the fade, to the messy pompadour. I love it! If you’re into the retro style this is the perfect look to go for!

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@hackmensgrooming / Instagram

Tapered Sides with Low Faded Temple

Here’s a style you don’t often see. The top has been left longer and loosely combed giving it that free-flowing appearance.

The sides here have been trimmed down in two distinct gradients, a very sharp, very striking, 80’s dance floor look. You spin me round round baby round round.

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@moohammad_hamze / Instagram

Drop Fade and Contrasting Hard Lines

So many things happening here. The expertly styled pompadour, although pretty impressive, isn’t what I like the most about this haircut. Notice the drop fade and the shaved ‘claws’ design done on the beard as well. What a masterpiece!

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@lieanne_ / Instagram

Textured French and Mid Fade

Ah, the French crop. Here they’ve kept the fringe quite long but it’s because of the great natural waves we’re seeing unfold into beautiful, messy chaos. I love it!

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@liamjtwist / Instagram

Drop Fade and Wavy Top

Although a little different from the previous messy pompadour hairstyle, this natural wavy middle part is a fascinating option for those retro-style lovers.
We’ve got the short sides done with a temple fade and a mid drop fade. If you’re looking for something similar,  a burst fade would work wonderfully here!

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@jaysfades / Instagram

Lazy Quiff

The quiff has become a favorite of modern times for its relaxed nature. Style it or not, it’s bound to give you a breezy and playful look. Pair it up with a high fade and a good side part to get a similar look!

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@rtgtmiami / Instagram

Silky Pompadour with Faded Sides

Faded sides being all the rage now, this silky-smooth pompadour variation has a more modern look then compare to one rocked by the king himself Elvis Presely.

Pairs well with a beard or without, just don’t pair it with regular visits to a donut shop.

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@jaysfades / Instagram

Long Brush Back and Faded Undercut

Some may be hesitant to get this style of haircut because of the mostly-uniform length on top and what that means for its styling needs. But don’t be put off by it, embrace it! You’ll just need to find the right products to help you keep everything up there in order.

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@hackmensgrooming / Instagram

Neat Drop Fade with Sharp Line Up

The flow of the sides mirror the curvature of his facial hair, outlining and highlighting his jawline and bringing the focus towards the face and then the very quiff of the hair.

The varying shades of brown across the top make to accentuate the overall shape and texture, as well as giving it that rebellious look(within reason of course.) Ditch “rebel without a cause”, and instead embrace the notion of “a rebel with a steady career and job security.” Rolls right off the tongue.

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@e_visionaire / Instagram

Medium Fade and Curls

Curls, in a way, represent hair’s ultimate freedom, it’s hair that has been allowed to grow in its most natural form. Even though some of us born without naturally curly hair have to use chemicals to achieve our dream curls, the focus is still the same: to look as natural as possible.

Here we see that pairing the curls with short sides gives us a style that’s both natural-looking and functional in our modern-day to day life.

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@jayetothekaye / Instagram

Side Brushed Natural Texture

Gorgeously done textured top and a simple buzz on the sides. Sometimes you don’t have to think too much and overcomplicate it.

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@jaysfades / Instagram

Fluff Brush Back and Mid Fade

In perfect order. You’re more into the sleek, no-fuzz style, and here’s what you want to do with your hair: keep it simple. A medium fade and a classic volumized brush back will have you ready for any occasion!

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@e_visionaire / Instagram

Disconnected Undercut and Brush-Up Curls

The disconnected undercut gives new meaning to the words clean-cut, it shows you have a deliberate and discerning eye for style. Your hair is relegated to the bounds you set for it, it can go here and no further.

One of the reasons you would want a style like this is to show off incredible full-bodied, lushes hair. If you’re balding, well you might want to avoid this style.

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@skinfadepost / Instagram

Dyed Mid Fade with Pocky Fringe

What do Madonna, Nicki Minaj and this dude have in common? They’ve all mastered the bleach blonde/dark roots style that was all the rage back in the days when love was a battlefield. The top is both textured and layered, making it more visually disheveled while the roots and surfer bleach blonde reminds us of our parent’s youth(or our own).

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@luiiisc_ / Instagram

Blonde Ombre Pompadour

The Pompadour ombre effect is achieved when the hair from the top cut is gradually shorter as it gets to the sides, sort of like an upside-down pyramid.

This gives us a more refined and dapper pompadour, making you stand out even more than with just the pompadour alone. The highlights further add to the look by accentuating the top and creating a sharp contrast between opposite ends of the style spectrum.

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Low Fade with Neat Line Up

Although the king kept his sides longer than this, this certainly would be the updated version of the Elvis look.

The longer, swept over top gives you that wild hound dog looks, while the short sides keep your face ready for photos from every angle. Thank you, thank you, thank you very much.

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@e_visionaire / Instagram

Medium Undercut and Loose Curls

Having hair with a lot of volume is a great way to achieve a taller, more dominating presence. In this photo, we can see just how much volume adds to his look, while keeping the sides short allows him to frame his face in a manner that presents him in a more slender light, while still looking like an absolute boss.

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@poolethebarber / Instagram

Wavy Side Swept Top with Tapered Sides

Side swept hair is a look that will never go out of fashion. It’s great for those of us that want just that little bit of extra length, without the volume(as we all know, the volume can be a chore to maintain.) Nice, easy, and natural. Great for running your fingers through it.

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@we_married_hair / Instagram

Simple Top with Shiny Strands

Having shiny, smooth hair has been popular with the ladies for ages but men can also enjoy silky hair as well. It has the effect of making you look very slick, and business-minded like Michael Douglas in Wall Street.

You can pull this off by using Shampoo, Conditioner, and hair oil. Avoid using products in your hair that contain drying agents such as SLS and you should be good as gold.

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@urednistvo.pricesk.robert / Instagram

Simple Undercut Taper with Side Brushed Top

The undercut taper is one of the most tried and true hairstyles that has held up through the ages. It keeps coming back again and again like ripped jeans and long straight hair, and unlike disco, for the most part, is here to stay.

It’s a great middle-ground style that won’t polarize people and will work in almost every aspect of your life perfectly be it a job interview or a secret spy mission(should you choose to accept it).

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@travisanthonyhair / Instagram

High Volume Open Quiffed Top

“What do I need to do to get you in this car today?” This high volume open quiffed top is the ultimate salesman hairstyle if salesmen had this much style.

The volume and side-swept top give it that go-getter looks while the sides are kept “short but not too short.”(stylists, how many times have you heard that at work?)

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@barber_djirlauw / Instagram

Strendy Quiffed Neat Drop Fade

The Quiff haircut is similar to a Pompadour but with less volume. It has adorned the heads of many iconic stars such as Ryan Gosling and Vanilla ice.

Wikipedia(the modern Webster’s) defines it as a cross between the pompadour and the flat top of the 1950s. It has gone through many resurgences throughout the years since the 50’s such as in the ’80s in England during the Teddy boy movement and then again in the ’90s throughout the rest of Europe.

Did it have a hand in the creation of Drive and Ice Ice baby? We can only speculate…

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Almost No Sides with Neat High Fade

This hairstyle is a bit shorter than the others we’ve seen, demonstrating the versatility that the short sides, long top long starts you off with; You can literally take this style in any direction. We see that he’s opted for a shorter, more sporty look. We’ve also seen a few footballers rocking this look to victory.

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@stell_the_talent / Instagram

Thin Rough Textured Short Hair

Keeping the sides shot doesn’t have to mean that you have them down all the way to the skin. In this example, we see a very conservative temple fade and a taper for a super classic look for a short crop. 

Related topics Undercuts