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6 Hairstyles and Haircuts for Balding Men

Medically approved by
Dr Earim Chaudry
Last updated
26th July 2021

In 30 seconds

There are many hairstyles that look great on balding men. From the buzzcut to the combover, the trick is to find the one that works for you.

When you first start to lose your hair, you may find that things just don’t feel quite right up top. That’s normal — and finding a look that works is a crucial way to manage any negative feelings surrounding your changing appearance. Keeping your hair short can help, while slicking it back can show that you’re owning your new hairline.

You don’t need to accept male pattern baldness, however. If a different hairstyle doesn’t do the trick, treatments like Finasteride and Minoxidil are proven to be effective in reversing hair loss. They work in 90% of men.

Seeing the early signs of hair loss can be traumatic. For many of us, a receding hairline can be something we await in fear, as if a sign that our youth is starting to fade.

While hair loss is probably more common than you think, this is a totally understandable feeling. Balding is one of the most significant changes in appearance a man will undergo throughout his life. As a result, it’s no surprise that it can take an emotional toll, too.

However, finding the right hairstyle can provide a new store of confidence for balding men. The trick is to experiment with what works for you. In this article, we’ll talk you through some haircuts and hairstyles for balding men that you’ll be proud to sport.

What are the Early Signs of Hair Loss?

Hair loss — or, to give it its medical name, male pattern baldness (MPB) — is a condition usually associated with the process of ageing. According to the American Hair Loss Association, by the age of 50, 85% of men have significantly thinning hair.

However, younger men get it too. The same study suggests that at 35, two-thirds of men will have visible thinning,  whether at the hairline, the crown, or anywhere on the top of the scalp. In all men, these are the places you are most likely to notice it first.

Hairstyles for balding men work to make the best out of the early signs of balding, which include the following:

  • A receding hairline and “widow’s peak”: Hair loss usually starts above the temples and progresses so that you are left with an M-shaped hairline with a visible point at the centre of your forehead.
  • A bald spot: The crown is the other common place where you’ll first notice MPB.
  • Less healthy hair: Where your hair is thinning, you may notice that individual hairs are brittle or wiry.

You’ll know your hair better than anyone else. So, the biggest sign to look out for is if it starts behaving strangely when you style, comb, or wash it, as this might be a sign that things are changing too.

Treating Hair Loss

Before we look at some hairstyles for balding men, it’s worth knowing that you don’t have to take MPB lying down. Treatments are available for hair loss that encourage hair regrowth in the majority of men. These include Finasteride, a treatment you take as a pill, and Minoxidil, a topical solution.

Firstly, Finasteride works to tackle the hormone, dihydrotestosterone or DHT, that causes MPB. This hormone binds to your hair follicles and, in those men who are sensitive to it, can cause those follicles to shrink and weaken.

Finasteride, however, blocks DHT’s production by inhibiting the particular enzyme that produces it. Studies have shown that the drug prevents further loss — and encourages regrowth — in 90% of men.

Minoxidil, meanwhile, is applied directly to the scalp and works to promote your follicular health by encouraging the flow of blood to the area. As a vasodilator, it widens your blood vessels, allowing more oxygen and nutrients to reach your follicles. This is great for your hair and improves hair coverage in 60% of men, too. 

6 Cuts and Hairstyles for Balding Men

While the above treatment offers an effective solution, you may simply decide to embrace the balding and learn to live with a different style entirely. That’s a great choice too. You just need to make sure you find a style that gives you the confidence that you need.

So, without further ado, here are some of the best hairstyles for balding men:

Clean-Shaven

The first one is bold — and might take a bit of getting used to. However, the clean-shaven look (rocked by men as different as Dwayne Johnson and Sir Patrick Stewart) can be a real winner.

This style is best for men whose hair loss has progressed so that a bald spot is clearly visible through other styles. But the effect is striking and is the easiest style to maintain.

Buzzcut

If clean-shaven is a little too much, however, you can try the buzzcut, which keeps you looking sleek whilst softening things up a little.

You needn’t associate it with the soldier aesthetic, however. Rather, the buzzcut ranges from the “butch cut” — short top and upper sides, and even shorter lower sides — to the “Ivy League”, a type of buzzcut that leaves the front long enough to style.

These are easy to manage, look sharp, and are a classic hairstyle for balding men.

Shaggy

While short hair is generally recommended for men who are balding, it is not necessarily your only option. A bit of length can work wonders in covering random spots of thinning – particularly if you mess things up a bit.

This one works well when your hair loss is not too advanced. If things are too patchy, though, it might not be an effective option.

The Caesar

Named after none other than the Roman Emperor, Julius Caesar, whose statues show him sporting the look, the Caesar is a haircut that brings all the hair forward. The hair lays horizontally and creates a fringe at the front that covers a receding hairline.

If the Emperor himself isn’t enough inspiration, think George Clooney, who almost single-handedly made it cool again.

Slicked Back

The slicked back hairstyle isn’t going to disguise a receding hairline. Rather, it’s going to work with it to make a striking cut everyone can be pleased with.

Think short on the sides and long enough to be combed backwards on top. It’s a look made famous by David Beckham and Leonardo DiCaprio.

Combover

Less Donald Trump and more Anderson Cooper, the combover can do a great job of taking the attention away from a receding hairline. As with other styles, keep this one short: those long strands of hair might not disguise the bald spot in the way you hope they do.

Key Takeaways

A receding hairline doesn’t mean the end of the world. Rather, there are lots of different hairstyles for balding men that can get the most out of your changing appearance.

Experiment, and see which look you like best. But if you just don’t want to bear the baldness, there are treatments, such as Finasteride and Minoxidil, that can work to reverse it.

References

  1. American Hair Loss Association – Men’s Hair Loss: https://www.americanhairloss.org/men_hair_loss/introduction.html

  2. Finasteride 1 mg Film-coated Tablets – https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/6044/smpc

While we've ensured that everything you read on the Health Centre is medically reviewed and approved, information presented here is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.

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