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Shadow Fade Haircut: Top 18 Styles To Try Out This Year


There are several hairstyles for men, but very few have enjoyed as much unfading popularity for decades as the shadow fade haircut.

After all…

It is a unique haircut that can give your hair a cool and chic look. You won't have to trim too much hair on the sides.

It can complement any head shape and hair type. With the many types of shadow fade haircuts, you can find the right hairstyle for your head shape and hairstyle.

What Is A Shadow Fade Haircut?

The shadow fade is a unique haircut that blends hair on the back and sides of the head with some locks on top. The fades suggest that your hair is progressively decreasing, with the hair being shorter near your hairline and longer at the top. This haircut is ideal for professional guys who want to be respected and taken seriously.

Fortunately, it is a versatile style that can be incorporated with several hairstyles. Therefore, if you're looking for a new hairstyle to help you stand out, you should incorporate your current hairstyle with a shadow fade haircut.

How Do You Give Yourself A Shadow Fade Haircut?

Giving yourself these fades is not that hard, but a few types of shadow fades will require a professional barber. So if you plan on giving yourself a shadow fade hairstyle, you should do the following:

  • Start by determining where the fade lines should be. The guide will help you determine and see the end and the beginning of your shadow fade.
  • Trim the hair on top of your head to the desired length using a pair of professional shears.
  • Take your clippers and run them between your hairline and the first fade line. And since you need to create a gradual transition, you should not be in a rush.
  • Trim your hair by moving the clippers across your head.
  • After achieving the desired height, you can clean the edges using a cordless clipper, and don't forget about the ear and temple region.
  • Finally, you can sanitize your skin using an alcohol-based spray to prevent your skin from becoming bumpy or irritated.

18 Type Of Shadow Fade Haircut

1. Low Shadow Fade

The low shadow fade is ideal for guys looking for high contrast and a bold hairstyle. While it's a more reserved and low-key shadow fade, it does create a neat silhouette.

This low shadow fade works perfectly on straight and curly hair.

The low shadow fade starts at the bottom, right around your neck and ears. And as it goes up, it becomes less apparent and finally blends with the top. The low shadow fade is ideal for folks with oblong, oval, and diamond-shaped faces.

If you're looking for an exceptional hairstyle, you can keep the upper part short, sleek, straight, and curly.

2. Shadow Temp Fade

This haircut features temples that meet the sideburns; in fact, the main focus of this shadow fade hairstyle is the temples. The upper hair should also be cut short or medium length. The shadow temp fade is ideal for guys with beards and even an afro.

3. Shadow Pompadour Fade

Shadow Pompadour Fade

Pompadour is a popular hairstyle that has helped most men stand out for years. Therefore, you can never go wrong with this shadow fade hairstyle as it incorporates some sidelines that give you an edgy and sharp look. Plus, the fact that the sides are styled low guarantees you a clean appearance.

Pompadour is ideal for folks with oval, triangular, and rectangular faces. And the best method for keeping your pompadour shadow fade neat is using oil-based pomade or wax daily.

To create this shadow fade hairstyle, you should get an experienced barber who can give you some flawless side fades.

4. High Shadow Fade Haircut

Unlike the classic shadow fade, the transition of the high shadow fades starts near the top of your head. Therefore, it makes an impactful style than the classic fade; plus, this high shadow fade looks great on guys with square or round faces.

After getting the high shadow fade hairstyle, you can either slick it back or keep it short. You can also combine high shadow fade with some bushy and long beards.

5. Mid-Shadow Fade

Several shadow fades work with curly tops, and one of the most popular ones is the mid-shadow fade. It is one of the few shadow fade haircuts that can help emphasize your curly hair, especially if you plan on keeping the hair on top of your head curly. The mid-shadow fade complements the hair on top of your head rather than high, burst, or classic fades.

But you should keep your curls short and don't go wild.

6. Shadow Taper Fade

Shadow Taper Fade

If you have ever tried a taper fade hairstyle, you should ask for a shadow taper fade the next time you visit a barbershop. This shadow taper fade style is ideal for folks with diamond, oblong, or oval-shaped heads.

Plus, the only tough decisions you will ever have to make when getting the shadow fade taper hairstyle is do you want to leave the top hair super-short, natural or curly.

7. Classic Shadow Fade

Generally, you can never go wrong with the classic styles; after all, it is the oldest type of shadow fade haircut trending for years. The shadow fade goes well with a suit or any formal wear.

This shadow fade hairstyle features medium fade on your sides; all you have to do is comb your hair back to create a quaff.

The comb-over associated with the shadow fade is what makes it work. This haircut is ideal for guys with oval and rectangular face shapes.

8. Cortes Shadow Fade

Cortes shadow fade is an exceptional hairstyle for guys with a thin facial hair style, and in most cases, the hair starts at the cortex. For this style to work, you must leave the hair on top of your head long; therefore, you can have medium fades on the sides and then keep your hair brushed. Cortes shadow fade is ideal for guys with round, square, and heart-shaped faces.

9. Burst Shadow Fade

Like most shadow fades, the burst shadow hairstyle is ideal for curls. The burst shadow fade is one of the few hairstyles that help tame your curls while highlighting them in a certain way. With this hairstyle, you should always keep the curls on top of your head short.

Other than the curls, the sides should be perfectly layered to create a unique shadow-like effect. The shadow fade will help highlight your curls, creating an exceptional haircut to help you stand out in the crowd. 

10. Shadow Fade With A Neat Side-Part

Nothing is more flattering for a guy's hairstyle than a neat side part that helps you stand out. But if you plan on adding a fade, you should ensure that it is tapered and low. This shadow fade is ideal for guys with round, triangle, and oval-shaped faces.

But you will have to use a round brush and dryer to keep your hair up while it is wet. You can even add some shadow fade products to keep your hair as high as possible while accenting your hair using a fine comb.

11. Shadow High Top Fade

This haircut is quite natural with styled and perfectly trimmed sides. And to help your hair stand out in a crowd, you can add taper medium fade. The shadow high-top fade is ideal for heart, square, and oval-shaped faces.

A high afro will also look great with this haircut, but you will require a skilled barber to help with this shadow fade styling.

12. Spiked Shadow Fade

You will love the spiked shadow fade if you're obsessed with exceptional hairdos. This shadow fade is both sassy and edgy at the same time. This shadow fade haircut is ideal for folks with diamond, triangular, oval, and round-shaped faces.

The spiked shadow fade works perfectly for folks with straight hair types. So you should first blow-dry your straight hair with your brush. You can style your straight hair using strong water-based pomade and even add some hairspray to keep your hair in place.

13. Classy Sleek Shadow Fade

If you plan on looking super-classy every time you leave the house, you should get this slicked shadow fade. This shadow fade style is unique for events where you need to be elegant and dapper. It's also a great addition to any trendy suit you wear.

This shadow fade hairstyle is great for folks with oval and rectangular-shaped faces. Another thing that helps it stand out is that you will only need oil-based pomade. Therefore you can easily slick your beautiful hair to the back or side.

To achieve a sleek look, you will need a fine comb.

14. Shadow Fade For Folks With Longer Hair

Most guys go for short haircuts, which are very easy to style, but have you ever tried a shadow fade with long hair? If you want to keep your hair long and still want to rock a shadow fade hairstyle, then you should try this shadow fade with long hair. You can even combine these shadow fade haircuts with your long beards.

Unfortunately, most guys think it is too much hair, but as long as you keep your hair neat, it will look fashionable and help you stand out. This shadow fade hairstyle is ideal for men with round and oval faces.

If you have long hair, you should get a comb and start combing your long hair every day for guys to see your new hairstyle. You can style it for special occasions with oil-based pomade or wax.

15. Shadow-Faded Comb Over

The long, comb-over haircut has been quite popular among men for years. All you have to do is grow your mane, grab some shadow fade haircuts styling products, and perfect your hair by combing it. The comb-over hairstyle is perfect for guys with oval, square, triangular, and round-shaped faces.

You should style your shadow fade haircuts using hair clay or wax for a perfect look. These hair products will keep your hair up while making it look natural. For a smooth surface, you can use a fine comb.

16. Shadow Low-Bald Fade

Generally, a bald fade refers to leaving the sides bald, and it's ideal for guys who want to leave a lasting impression. The bald fade is great for folks with rectangular, triangular, or square faces.

Since the sides will be bald, you won't need to do any styling; instead, you should dedicate your time to the top. Plus, afro and curly hair types won't require any hair product, especially if it's not too long. But if you have longer hair, you may require hair clay to keep your bald fade hair looking great.

17. Artsy Shadow Fade

Are you tired of the same traditional hairstyles? If that is the case, you should consider getting a modern shadow fade like the artsy shadow fade. This shadow fade haircut is meant for bold guys, not the faint in heart.

For this shadow fade hairstyle, you should create 2 lines on the sides and then add curls on top, and you will be left with an exceptional hairstyle. Like most hairstyles, this shadow fade is ideal for triangle and rectangular-shaped faces.

18. Shadow Fade Step

If you're looking for one of the most sought-after hairstyles, you should try this hairdo. Generally, it's not such an obvious haircut as it will require skills and a lot of time to perfect.

The step and the hair on top of your head should be trimmed to a certain length. After attaining the desired length, your barber will create a low fade and style the hair. This hairstyle is ideal for guys with round, diamond, and oval facial shapes.

Dapper Point: There is a better-looking fade cut for you who prefer a cleaner and closer trim. Read our post to find out more -- Skin Fade Haircut.

Watch This!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Difference Between A Shadow Fade And A Fade?

A fade is any hairstyle that begins with zero hair on the sides and then perfectly blends with the hair on top. A fade is also referred to as a bald fade, and any type of fade that starts with no hair on the sides is referred to as a fade. On the other hand, shadow fades start with short hair on the sides and easily blend into the hair on top of your head.

What Are Shadow Fade Haircuts?

Shadow fades are hairstyles that start light on your sides and blend perfectly with the longer hair on top. There are several variations of shadow fades, and the barber can begin the blend high, medium or low.

What Is The Difference Between A Taper And A Fade?

Both hairstyles feature nicely trimmed hair with descending lengths on the back and sides that shorten while moving from the top to the bottom. The main difference between the two lies in the length of the hair. The taper is inoffensive but if you're looking for more bravado and edge, you should consider the fade.


Shadow fades are some of the most famous fade hairstyles for guys. And like most cool fades, there are several variations of shadow fade hairstyles. Therefore, you can try high, mid or low shadow fades, among others. But the main feature of this style is shorter hair on the sides and longer hair on top.   

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