If there is ever a time to look your best, it’s at your wedding. After all, those pictures are going to last forever. Choosing the right haircut for your wedding isn’t always about the cut itself—it’s also about how you style it and how fresh it is. “You're spending a lot of money on the wedding, so you should put a good amount of time into making sure your hair is something you don't want to worry about,” says stylist Rob Casey.
The most important thing you can do is prepare in advance. This means, if you’re thinking of rocking a new hairstyle at your wedding, talk to your barber well before the big day. “You want to get their input because if something’s not possible, you don’t want to scramble for another hairstyle,” he says. It also means allowing time to transition. “Plan on getting four haircuts before the wedding about a month apart,” Casey says, especially if you’re growing out your hair (average hair grows about an inch a month). "A consultation four weeks prior to the wedding is key," says stylist Joel Torres. "In the consultation, I like to decide if the haircut should be two weeks before the event or the day before."
Ahead, our top 15 men's haircuts to use as inspiration for your wedding day.
More guys are adopting longer, more natural styles these days, as letting your hair do its thing is often your best look. It gives a cool, classic wedding day look that allows you to look like yourself. "In this case, it's better to get a trim two weeks before and for the day of the wedding style it natural with products," says Torres.
The Leading Part
“Remember that these are your wedding pictures that last forever, and classic haircuts never die,” says Casey. “A modern classic haircut is always good. Something with a side part, scissor cuts on the sides, and some length on top. It should be able to be pushed over.”
A mid-length afro helps natural texture shine through instead of relying on picking for volume. It’s a youthful, cool look but still polished for a formal setting (like a wedding). "Coarse hair works well with leave-in conditioners and shine," says Torres. He recommends Bed Head Gimme Grip Texturizing Conditioning Jelly ($15) and Bed Head Head Rush Shine Spray ($18).
The difference between a buzz cut you do yourself and what your barber gives you is that it’s not one length all over. Keeping hair slightly longer on top than the sides will help accentuate your bone structure.
Waves on Top
“An easy way to enhance your hair is using a styling cream,” says Casey. They are suitable for all hair lengths and don’t have much hold but help provide shape. Creams also help de-frizz it and keep the hair looking smooth (but natural)—especially if you have longer hair with a natural wave.
Slicked-back hair is one of the most classic special occasion styles for men, but it’s all about what product you use. Don’t use a gel, which will make your hair look more wet than slick. Instead, use a pomade to add volume without too much shine.
“Shine pomade is great for weddings because it's more of a dressier look,” says Casey. If you use a matte clay or paste in your daily life, switching to a shiny pomade for your wedding is the easiest way to up the ante with minimal effort.
Anyone with curly hair knows that it can have a mind of its own. Keeping your curls short or medium length can make a big difference, but Casey recommends asking your barber to teach you how to style your cut well before your wedding day to make sure you’re prepared (that goes for all haircuts too).
An undercut (when your hair on top is much longer than the hair on the sides) is one of the most versatile haircuts you can have. Keep it slicked back for the ceremony and then mess it up for the reception. "If the wedding is outdoors, then a leave-in conditioner with humidity control and sometimes even hairspray (Bed Head by TIGI Hard Head Extreme Hold Hairspray, $20) to maintain control and a fresh and camera-ready look."
Modern flat tops look cool because they’re shorter and not as extreme as their '90’s predecessors. That shorter length also makes them great for a wedding since they’re cool and edgy without being over the top. Just remember to get it cut two weeks before the big day for optimal shape (without the excess length that three to four weeks of growth time would produce).
A "disconnect" falls somewhere between an undercut and a fade. Keep enough length on top to get texture and volume, but don’t go so long that it falls flat halfway through your vows.
Styling a pompadour can take practice (and usually a round brush/hairdryer combo), but the payoff is lots of volume and a slick statement. Ask your barber to leave enough length to the front that you can build up height and curl it back on itself.
Side parts will always be a classic, and getting one cut-in takes the guesswork out. Ahead of the big day, “get a shape up two or three days before the wedding,” says Casey, to make sure the edges are crisp. “Always go to the same person because they’re going to have experience with your hair texture and growth patterns.”
Even though this haircut is short, it relies on texture to make it modern and cool. The best thing about it is that it looks just as good parted as it does messy, meaning that you could have multiple hairdos throughout the day if you want. For short hair, Torres recommends getting a trim the day before and using a pomade to style. "Pomades can be matte or shiny depends on the desired look." He likes Bed Head for Men Pure Texture Molding Paste ($8).
The Captain America
Classic in cut but modern in style, this is an updated iteration of the side part. Use your natural part instead of creating one, then use a cream pomade to smooth hair without adding excess shine.