Difference Between Fade and Taper Haircut

The taper and the fade are two very common haircuts that often get confused. This is understandable, since they can be very similar in design and practicality. In reality, the main difference between fade and taper cuts is the length of your hair. Accordingly, these two types of haircuts are very similar. If you have longer hair, you should ask for a taper cut since it is the right term to use.

What is a Fade Cut?

When we are discussing a fade cut, we are usually talking about a haircut which is pretty short all across the head. If you would qualify your hair as “short” before going to the barber, then you should probably ask for a fade cut. That is, if you wish to use the right terminology. A fade cut normally gradually fades the hairline down in length until it disappears.

High Fade Haircut

A high fade haircut stands apart from the other types of fades since it starts the fade near the top of your head. For a high fade to fit into the mold, the hairline disappears several inches above the ears. A person with a high fade usually has plenty of hair on the top of their head, but the sides are left bare.

Mid Fade Haircut

A mid fade haircut is designed to leave a little more hair on the sides. Although a mid fade haircut will normally complete the fade above the ears, the exact position where the fade stops is usually left open to your personal look and circumstances. A mid fade is usually the most conservative type of fade to receive since it doesn’t typically cut your hair too high or too low.

Low Fade Haircut

The low fade haircut is great for the person who wants to space out the time between haircuts since it tends to look really great and natural as it grows back in. Additionally, it is the lowest fade that you can get. Usually, the fade line will stop right above or at the ears.

What is a Taper Cut?

A taper cut is very similar to a fade, but has a couple major differences. For starters, the hair on the top of one’s head is typically much longer if they receive a taper cut. Additionally, the look and design of the fade aspect of the haircut can differ in style and appearance.

Taper Fade

The taper fade is the closest haircut you can receive to a fade without cutting most of your hair off. A taper fade usually starts out with hair that is about at eyebrow length or longer and leaves the individual with most of their hair when finished. A barber will typically even out the hair on the top of your head a certain length before cutting the sides to a level you would typically experience with a fade cut.

Neck Taper

A neck taper is for the person that wants to cut some of the sides off without sacrificing their whole head of hair in the process. For example, a neck taper will typically leave you with the hair that you previously had on your sides, minus a certain portion of your neck. Usually, the portion of the neck that is cut for a neck taper is the lower part which can quickly grow out of control.

Classic Taper

A classic taper cut is one of the most traditional haircuts in recent history. Those with a classic taper have reasonably long hair on the top which is shortened on the sides. Usually, a classic taper cut doesn’t completely fade the hairline down to your skin. In other words, a classic taper allows you to keep your head of hair while eliminating the long and messy hairs on the sides.

What is the Main Difference Between Fade and Taper Haircuts?

As we have described, the main difference between fade and taper is the length of the hair and the method for cutting the sides of the head. A fade cut usually implies that you want your haircut to be much shorter than you would if you asked for a taper. Additionally, the style and length in which the barber cuts the sides of your head heavily depends on whether you use the term “fade” or “taper.” If you want a longer cut, use the word taper. If you want a short and more perfected fade on the sides, ask for a fade.

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