Hairstyles for Men with Thin Hair
Reviewed by Aimee Paik, MD
Written by Our Editorial Team
Dealing with thinning hair or a receding hairline can be frustrating. As your hairline moves back and your hair gets a little thinner, you may need to change up your hairstyle to accommodate it — and that’s okay.
Not only can a good haircut make your new hairline or hair density less visually obvious — it can often turn it into an asset that emphasizes your best facial features.
From hairstyles for balding men to simple styles that soften a receding hairline, you have a wide variety of options at your disposal to reduce the aesthetic effects of hair loss and keep your hair looking its best.
Below, we’ve shared ten haircuts for receding hairlines, thinning hair and other signs of baldness that you may want to consider if you’ve recently noticed your hair starting to change.
We’ve also discussed your options for protecting your hair follicles, stopping your hair loss from worsening, and even potentially regrowing some of your “lost” hair.
The 10 Best Men’s Hairstyles for Thin Hair
Whether you currently have a short haircut, medium-length hair, curly hair, or fine hair, there’s a trendy, low-maintenance, simple haircut for you. The best haircuts for thin hair include:
The buzz cut
The crew cut
The mop top
The slick back
The skin fade
The faux hawk
Shaving it all off
Remember: hairstyles for balding men can still look great. The hardest part is finding a hairstyle that works for you.
The Buzz Cut
This haircut works well for: Any type of hair loss, from a mild receding hairline to Norwood 5, 6 or 7 hair. Great for guys who prefer a shortcut that doesn’t require many hair products.
Easy to style and even easier to manage, a buzz cut is a perfect option if you have thinner hair on the top of your scalp. Because your hair is short and your skin is visible, thinning patches on your scalp don’t stand out as much as they would with a longer haircut.
A buzz cut is also a good way to deal with a receding hairline, since it makes the entire hairline less obvious by reducing the level of contrast between your forehead and your hair.
If you prefer your hair a little longer on the top than on the sides, you can ask your hairstylist to combine a buzz cut with a fade. Fading your hair can help to produce a more natural transition from your hairline to the rest of your cut.
The Crew Cut
This haircut works well for: Guys with a receding hairline or slightly less thick hair on top who like to keep things nice and simple.
The military-style crew cut is a perfect haircut for balding men or men trying to make a receding hairline less obvious. This is because it reduces the level of contrast between your temples and the sides of your head, with the shorter sides creating the illusion of a more even hairline.
It’s also one of the best haircuts for balding men on top, as the short sides can balance out any thinning that’s occurring on your scalp.
Most guys who pick a crew cut opt for a classic short hairstyle. However, if you prefer your hair a little longer on top, you can try replacing the short military-style crew cut with a slightly longer high-and-tight haircut.
The Mop Top
This haircut works well for: Any type of hair loss, especially if you prefer mid-length hair or an even longer length to a short haircut that makes your hairline and scalp more visible.
Not a fan of short hair? A classic mop top haircut is a good option for making thinning hair much less obvious. Brush this type of hairstyle forward or across your forehead and it can also hide a receding hairline with a less obvious look than a comb-over.
One of the nicest aspects of a mop top is you can adjust its length to match your tastes, from a classic Beatles style to a shoulder-length shag haircut to something shorter, messier and easier to manage.
The Slick Back
This haircut works well for: Aspiring corporate raiders, mafiosi and guys with thicker hair and a receding hairline who like to look stylish and professional at the same time.
A slick back haircut is exactly what it sounds like — short sides, with slicked back hair on the top of your head that covers your crown.
While a slick back haircut won’t totally hide your receding hairline, it’s a great way to own it while you make thinning hair on your crown less obvious. In fact, we’re sure we’re not alone when we say it’s one of the best hairstyles for balding men.
This haircut works well for: Any type of hair loss, especially diffuse hair thinning or a receding hairline that you’d like to turn into an asset.
The pompadour is a classic ‘40s and ‘50s hairstyle that looks just as good today with a shirt and jeans as it does with a zoot suit and two-tone wingtips.
A pompadour hairstyle has two major benefits when it comes to thinning hair. First, because it’s partially slicked back, it can help to hide thinning on your crown. This is great if you’re starting to notice a little diffuse thinning and want to make it less obvious.
Second, while the pompadour won’t hide a receding hairline, it can accentuate your hairline as a natural part of your face and turn it into a feature instead of a bug.
You can have long, medium-length or short hair with the pompadour and you can pair it with an undercut or facial hair (‘70s sideburns optional, of course).
The pompadour is also great for a diverse variety of face shapes, though men with round faces may want to steer clear of this option.
Hims has helped thousands of men regrow their hair
This haircut works well for: Guys with a fairly strong hairline and diffuse thinning on top that they’d like to make less obvious.
The quiff is similar to the pompadour and the cut for a pompadour and quiff are the same. The difference lies in the styling: a quiff is first brushed forward, then up into a wave hairstyle, while the pompadour is combed backward.
This haircut works well for: Diffuse thinning that mostly affects the top of your head, as well as a receding hairline that you’d like to soften.
A skin fade is what it sounds like — the sides and back of the head are cropped down to either the skin or to a very short length, while the hair on top is left longer or styled accordingly.
A proper skin fade is an iconic cut, and for lots of good reasons. Skin fades are one of the best haircuts for men with thin hair that’s mostly occurring on top, as well as a receding hairline that is starting to become a little too obvious.
Some people incorporate a side part (a part from the crown to the temple on one side, with the top left longer and combed over), while others rock a faux hawk with it or even leave the top au naturel (à la the quiff).
This haircut works best for: Guys with a receding hairline or thinning who prefer long hair on the top and a shorter-length cut on the sides.
The undercut combines shaved or very short sides with scissor-cut hair that’s much longer on top. It’s equal parts stylish and casual, giving you a mix of short hair that’s easy to care for and longer hair that you can style as you please.
The only real time that the undercut could cause commotion in the professional world is if you have a dramatic difference in length between the layered cut on top of your head and the hair on your back and sides.
When kept to a shorter length, the undercut becomes a versatile style. You can slick it back or mix it with other haircuts, such as the pompadour or quiff, giving you plenty of control over how your hair looks.
Try a Faux Hawk
This haircut works best for: Guys with thinning hair or a receding hairline who want the focus to be on the center of their hairline, not the temples.
A faux hawk features a tapered fade that’s both less dramatic and better overall for men with thinning hair than its older brother, the infamous mohawk. It'll also probably get more five-star reviews at the office.
A faux hawk combines a smooth fade on the sides of the head with a gentle spiking of hair on top of the head, which can help to volumize thinning hair.
Shave it All Off
This haircut works best for: Guys with significant, obvious hair loss who like the idea of never having to pay for a haircut again.
Sure, it’s the nuclear option, but it works. If you’ve got the confidence to pull off a shaved head and you like the way you look without hair, feel free to shave your head once you start to notice your hair thinning.
Shaving it all off isn't admitting defeat — it’s all about transcending hair loss. Instead of getting a receding hairline haircut, you’re getting rid of your receding hairline altogether, freeing you from the need to care about how your hair looks.
Just remember that shaving your head won’t prevent any further hair loss, meaning you might not have as much hair as you remembered if you ever decide to grow it back out.
How to Care for Your Hair
No matter what haircut you choose, it’s important to take good care of your hair. Effective hair care can prevent or limit damage to your hair, make your head of hair appear thicker and even slow down the effects of certain types of hair loss.
Whether you opt for a balding haircut or something different, use the following tips to make the most of your hairstyle and keep your hair looking its best:
Avoid heat, which damages your strands of hair. Heat and hair don’t go together, try to avoid curling irons, which can expose your hair to heat and reduce its strength. It’s also helpful to blow dry your hair carefully. Choose the lowest heat setting and limit the amount of time your hair comes into contact with hot air.
Choose a reliable shampoo and conditioner. Shampoo and conditioner play critical roles in preventing frizz and keeping your hair strong and healthy, making them worth using regardless of your hair type, hair texture or hair color. For best results, gently massage shampoo into your scalp rather than the full length of your hair, then focus the conditioner on the tips of your hair. Consider a dry shampoo if you’re prone to developing oily hair.
Choose mousse over gel, wax or hairspray. Strong hold hair styling products like gel, wax or texturizing spray can pull on your hair follicles, which may result in a form of hair loss called traction alopecia. Whenever possible, choose light hair styling products like mousse, which is excellent for styling choppy layers and adding volume to wavy hair.
Our list of men’s hair care tips shares other simple but effective techniques you can use to limit hair damage, slow down hair loss and keep your hair in great condition.
Shop by treatment options
No matter the treatment plan, the best place to start is somewhere. Early action is the best hair loss prevention.
Final Thoughts on Haircuts for Balding Men
If you are struggling with styling your thin hair, don’t lose hope. You have more options than you may think. Not only can the right hairstyle make a receding hairline or thinning less obvious — it can turn it into an asset that emphasizes your facial features and enhances your appearance.
Keep the following in mind when you’re choosing a haircut:
There’s no "best" balding men’s hairstyle. Hair loss can vary in type and severity. As such, there’s no single haircut that works best for every man with a receding hairline or thin hair on top.
Your facial shape plays a key role in your choice of haircut. Try to choose a haircut that complements both your hair and the shape of your face.
Don’t be afraid to experiment. The great thing about hair is that it quickly outgrows a bad cut. Don’t be afraid to try something new when it comes to hair styling. If a certain style doesn’t work for you, you’ll usually be able to grow out of it in a few weeks.
While a buzz cut, pompadour or layered haircut can do a lot to hide male pattern baldness, it’s also important to treat hair loss at its source.