25 Best Cuts for Men With Thinning Hair

Jude Law

Alessandra Benedetti - Corbis / Getty Images

Just because a guy is thinning on top doesn't necessarily mean he has to buzz all of his hair down to nothing. "Thinning hair is a challenge, but one that can be dealt with by choosing a shorter length," notes Patrick Butler, a hairstylist and director of technical education at Floyd's Barbershops. "Often, men try and grow their hair to cover a thin area and it backfires, as you can tend to see through the area."

We spoke with Butler and Benjamin Mohapi, the founder of New York's Benjamin Salon, for tips and examples of how to style thinning hair. While they noted that, for many guys, a buzz or bald head is a good option, but several options offer a bit more length and texture while still minimizing the thinning top. Take a look in the mirror, and then browse this gallery of haircuts for men with thinning hair to see which option you feel suits you the best. Better yet, print a photo of the style you're leaning toward and take it with you to the barber to ensure you get exactly the haircut and style you're going for.

Below, see 25 of the best haircuts for men with thinning or balding hair.

Meet the Expert

• Patrick Butler is the director of technical education and academy at Floyd's Barbershops, a chain of hair salons for both men and women.

• Benjamin Mohapi is a hairstylist and the founder of Benjamin Salon, based in New York.

01 of 25

Swept Over

Steven Yeun short flow haircut with mustache

Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images

Actor Steven Yeun provides a perfect example that, when it's grown out long enough, hair can be styled in a way to mask a receding hairline. To keep growing thin hair out, try to maintain a healthy routine—one free of stress. "Stress actually plays a major role in hair loss. Increased stress pushes a high number of hair follicles into a resting phase," says Butler. "Over time, the affected hairs will fall out through washing and combing."

The natural reaction to run your fingers through your hair and inadvertently tug at it when you are frustrated also causes hair to weaken in the follicle, and in turn, fall out.

02 of 25

A Short, Low-Effort Style

Channing Tatum

Steve Granitz / Contributor / Getty Images

For Channing Tatum's style, the hair is cut with a number two blade all over. The sides and back should then be tapered neatly. To further minimize the thinning top, the sides and back can be taken shorter to allow for more even coverage. If you can see the scalp on top, it's a good idea to cut the sides and back short enough, so an equal amount of scalp is visible. Remember to use sunscreen when prolonged exposure to the sun is expected.

03 of 25

Grown-Out and Textured

Jude Law at the Captain Marvel European Gala

Mike Marsland/Getty Images

"I encourage men with thinning hair to opt for a shorter length that can stand up and give fullness to the style," says Butler of the grown-out style seen on actor Jude Law. Butler recommends using a texture powder (like Floyd's Texture Powder, $19), which "will give you a light hold and boost the hair up."

Men with thinning hair should avoid waxes, "as they tend to clump the hair together, which will accentuate the thinning area," says Butler. Powder will help to promote a thicker, fuller style.

04 of 25

A Short Caesar Cut

Andy Whitfield

Jason LaVeris / Contributor / Getty Images


For this style, as seen on Welsh actor Andrew Whitfield, the hair is cut clipper-short on the sides and back and left finger length on top. The hair is styled using a light pomade or gel and brushed forward with the fingers. This will help conceal a receding hairline and thinning top.

05 of 25

Medium-Textured Style

Ryan Reynolds

John Lamparski / Stringer / Getty Images

This is a great option for a guy with just some light thinning on top, like our friend Ryan Reynolds. The hair is cut short all over (about three finger-widths on top), with the sides and back tapering slightly. To style, apply a very small amount of paste to damp hair and distribute it evenly throughout. Using the fingertips, mess up the hair on top to give it a rough texture. This will help maximize coverage while minimizing the appearance of thinning.

06 of 25

A Buzz With a Beard

Idris Elba


Mike Marsland / Getty Images

For thinning hair, a buzz cut with clippers using a number two blade all over is a good call. A thin beard, similar to what Idris Elba is rocking here, adds a touch of trendiness and draws the eye towards the face. This is a good option for a man with thinning hair who can easily grow full—but still neat—facial hair.

07 of 25

Grown Out and Textured

Chris Martin

For those looking to grow their thin hair out (like singer Chris Martin, seen here), Butler recommends using high-quality products. "Using better ingredients in your hair care routine helps," he notes. "Find a quality shampoo and conditioner and/or use a product like Actiiv Recover Thickening Cleansing Hair Loss Shampoo Treatment ($65). This easy-to-use system is alternated every other day in your shower with your regular shampoo and conditioner. The great news is that it can penetrate the follicle and strengthen it so that you won’t lose more hair."

08 of 25

Shaved Head

Common with a shaved head

Jon Kopaloff / Stringer / Getty Images

While a bald head is not a good look on everyone, these days, it can be trendy, and it's considered appropriate for most professions. Consult your barber or stylist before taking the plunge to determine if your head shape is suitable for this look, as seen here on rapper Common.

09 of 25

Five O'Clock Shadow With Flat Top

Mahershala Ali

Presley Ann / Stringer / Getty Images

Mahershala Ali offers a prime example of the wonders of going a few days without a shave. Here, his facial stubble is rivaled only by a slight overgrowth of the flat top on his head. The result is masculine and rugged.

10 of 25


Prince William
Danny Lawson - WPA Pool / Getty Images

Prince William has never shied away from showcasing his hair loss—vacillating between a completely shaved head and a slightly grown-out head of hair. Here, the heir apparent showcases a tousled look (one that requires no products at all but could benefit from a high-quality hairdryer).

11 of 25

Slicked Back

Antonio Banderas

Carlos Alvarez / Stringer / Getty Images

Antonio Banderas has almost always showcased his luscious locks in a lengthier hairstyle—but one needn't a full head of hair to achieve this look. Here, some styling paste (we like Sachajuan's Hair Paste, $34) can add sheen and be used to mold hair in a way that makes it look thicker.

12 of 25

Grown Out With a Beard

Matthew McConaughey

Michael Loccisano / Staff / Getty Images

Actor Matthew McConaughey's hairline is a big part of his signature 'do. Here, he uses a bit of product to slick back the top while keeping the ends and the beard lived-in. The key to ensuring hair stays put but doesn't look too rigid, says Mohapi, is to utilize a hairbrush. "Brushing out hairspray stops it from looking stiff while still holding a style," he says. "You should still be able to move it around, and I think it's cooler when it's a bit looser."

13 of 25



Pascal Le Segretain / Staff / Getty Images

Rapper Tyga showcases a long, braided look, in which much of his scalp is visible. The look not only protects his hair but also offers a heavy dose of personality and style.

14 of 25

Longer on Top

Dwayne Johnson

Gregg DeGuire / Contributor / Getty Images

While he typically wears his hair in a shaved style, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has worn it long before. Here, his hairline is visible, with his sideburns remaining cropped and his hair slightly longer up-top.

15 of 25

Short and Spiky

Tom Ford

Axelle/Bauer-Griffin / Contributor

Designer Tom Ford manages to look casual and sophisticated all at once with his short, spiky 'do. The key here is to not overwhelm the hair with product so it retains a natural look.

16 of 25

Smooth and Sophisticated

Victor Rasuk

 Michael Tran / Stringer / Getty Images

Actor Victor Rasuk keeps his hair slicked back and short. Here, a medium-hold gel or paste comes in handy to keep hair in place. Try a product like Aveda Control Paste ($32) for a similar style.

17 of 25

Short and Tapered

LeBron James beard

Getty Images

Lebron James' short cut is classic through and through–and even with a receding hairline, the look manages to be suave. For this look, the sides are left much shorter than the top. A short beard adds even more personality and ups the cool factor.

18 of 25

Combover With Fade

Zayn Malik with messy hair

Michael Stewart/Contributor/Getty Images

While Zayn Malik has pretty thick hair, this look is ideal even for those who don't. Here, the dated combover gets an upgrade thanks to a fade at the temples and a slicked-to-the-side look. With a beard, you achieve even more balance.

19 of 25

Balding Fade

Adam Levine


Jeff Vespa / Contributor / Getty Images

Even men who are balding can get away with a funky haircut like this one on Adam Levine. You don't have to worry about hiding a receding hairline, either, as it can be blended into the fade.

20 of 25

Brushed Forward

Rami Malek

Tibrina Hobson / Getty Images

"The best way to get (and keep) volume on the top is to dirty it up a bit with a mix of a few products," notes Mohapi. A bit of texturizing spray can go a long way with the look seen here on Rami Malek. When hair is brushed forward, it helps conceal any bald spots, and the right products can make hair look thicker. We like Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray ($49).

21 of 25

Natural Buzz

John Legend
Jason Merritt/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

John Legend's number 3 buzz allows the hair to be just slightly longer than a classic buzz. The look is no-fuss and keeping it longer on top serves as a way to mask thinner sides.

22 of 25

Closely Shaved

Jason Statham

John Shearer/Getty Images

Jason Statham serves as proof that sometimes, a super-short shave is the best option. Here, the bald look is balanced by a five o'clock shadow.

23 of 25

Classic Bald

Taye Diggs

Taylor Hill / Contributor / Getty Images

Well-groomed facial hair acts as a foil to Taye Diggs' classic bald look. Here, it's all about frequent touch-ups to ensure hair stays as close to the skin as possible.

24 of 25

Long With Texture

Jamie Dornan

Dave J Hogan / Contributor / Getty Images

Keeping hair long and textured on top masks thinning hair, creating a more voluminous look. To replicate the look, turn to a product like Fatboy's Perfect Putty ($21).

25 of 25

Flat Top


Steve Granitz / Contributor / Getty Images

Those with thinning hair on the sides of the head will appreciate this look, which uses volume on the top of the head to create the illusion of more hair overall. Use a hydrating conditioner to ensure the hair stays moisturized.

  • How often should men with short hair get a trim?

    For super-short cuts (think buzzcuts or fades) you should visit your barber for a trim at least once a month. For longer hair (quiff, comb-over, etc.), aim to visit your stylist every one to two months

  • What are the go-to hair styling products men should have in their arsenal?

    As far as men's grooming products go, start by investing in a few key products: a salt or texture spray, a paste or pomade, and a strong or medium-hold gel.

  • Is there any way to keep hair from thinning?

    There are over-the-counter hair loss treatments worth trying, as well as professional procedures such as PRP, which have shown efficacy in adding volume to hair.

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