Medically reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP
Written by Our Editorial Team
Last updated 8/2/2022
Dealing with thinning hair or a receding hairline can be frustrating. As your hairline moves back and the hair on top of your head becomes less dense, certain hairstyles just don’t look quite as good as they used to when you had thick hair.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways to manage your hairstyle as your hair starts to recede and thin.
From hairstyles for balding men to haircuts for thin hair and even hair products that add thickness and cover-up patches of thinning hair, you have a variety of options at your disposal to reduce the aesthetic effects of hair loss and keep your hair looking good.
Below, we’ve listed our top tips and recommendations of hairstyles for balding men, so that as your hair thins and recedes, you can still look and feel your best. We’ve also listed a few simple prevention tips to help you stop your hair loss and avoid going from balding to bald.
If you’re dealing with hair loss, it’s important to know that not all hairstyles are equal. Haircuts for thin hair may not be ideal haircuts for balding men and vice versa.
Some cuts can emphasize your thin or bald patches and make your hair loss obvious, while others make it less visually obvious that you’re losing hair.
Before we get into our recommended haircuts for thin hair, let’s cover the one rule of styling your hair for hair loss: never resort to a comb-over.
Sure, it “hides” your baldness — at least, in the sense that it covers up visible patches of thinning hair or bald spots. However, comb overs are an obvious choice for men going bald and very easy to spot, and usually end up bringing more attention to your thinning hair than a normal haircut would.
With this warning out of the way, let’s look at some of the best hairstyles for men with thin hair or a receding hairline.
Whether you currently have a short haircut, medium length hair, curly hair, or fine hair, there’s a trendy, low maintenance and simple haircut for you.
The next time you visit your stylist or barbershop, you can speak with confidence about the best hairstyles for your thinning or receding hair.
Remember: hairstyles for balding men can still look great. The hardest part is finding a hairstyle that works for you.
Easy to style and even easier to manage, a buzz cut is a perfect option if you have thinner hair. Because your hair is short and your skin is visible, thin 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.
The military-style crew cut is one of the most ideal haircuts for balding men or for 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, thinner sides creating the illusion of a more even hairline.
If you prefer slightly longer hair on top, you can replace the military-style crew cut with a more classic high and tight haircut.
Not a fan of short hair? A classic mop top haircut is a good option for making thinning hair less obvious. Brush it 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 nice aspects of a mop top is you can adjust its length to match your tastes, from a classic Beatles-style haircut to something messier and easier to manage.
While a slick back haircut won’t 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 haircuts for balding men.
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.
If you don’t have thinning hair but want to make a receding hairline less obvious, you can also slick your hair across instead of backwards.
The pompadour is a flexible hairstyle that can help to hide thinning on your crown. Just like the slick back, this hairstyle won’t do much for a receding hairline, but is ideal for that pesky bald spot on the top of your head.
You can have long, medium-length or short hair with the pompadour and you can pair it with an undercut or facial hair. The pompadour is also great for a variety of face shapes, though men with round faces may want to steer clear of this option.
“I tried several different options before but Hims combined approach of all four methods by far created the best results.”
“Hims has been the greatest confidence boost, no more bald jokes! I look and feel so much younger!”
“When I show my barber my progress, he is always in disbelief. I have to recommend Hims to any guy who’s experiencing thinning.”
“Cost effective and affordable. My hair keeps growing thicker, fuller, and at a fast rate.”
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“I’m a 34 year old father of two and have been using Hims for over a year now. My hair is back to what it was in my mid twenties.”
The quiff is almost identical 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. The quiff is similarly good for hiding thinning or bald spots on the crown of the head (and similarly terrible at hiding a receding hairline).
Skin fades are becoming increasingly popular, and as it happens, they also work well for a receding hairline. Generally, a skin fade is how it sounds — the sides and back of the head are cropped down to either the skin or very short, while the hair on top can be left longer or styled accordingly.
Some people incorporate a side part (a part from the temples to the crown 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.
The undercut has been one of the most popular hairstyles around for the past four or so years. And in most instances, the undercut with shaved sides is suitable for business and casual lifestyles.
The only real time that the undercut may cause commotion in the professional world is when you have a dramatic difference in length between the hair on the top of your head and the hair on your back and sides.
But when kept to a shorter length, the undercut becomes an incredibly versatile style. Another thing that makes the undercut a great haircut is that it works for virtually everyone.
Whether you have a thick head of hair or you’re beginning to notice signs of thinning on your hairline and crown, the undercut can still be a stylish choice that can conceal balding.
A faux hawk is similar to the notorious mohawk, minus the dramatic strip of spiky hair on an otherwise bald head. Instead, a faux hawk features a taper fade that is both less dramatic and better for men who are already facing thin hair.
A faux hawk ultimately combines a gentle 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.
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 hairline thinning.
Just remember that shaving your head won’t prevent any further hair loss, meaning you might not have as much hair you remembered if you ever decide to grow it back out.
While styling products like mousse, dry shampoo, hairspray won’t actually make your hair thicker, they can give the illusion of thicker hair by adding extra volume, letting you cover up thin patches and give your hair a more uniform, healthy look.
Our main rule when it comes to styling products is to avoid waxes and hair gels, such as pomade, which are notorious for making patches of thin hair look flatter, thinner and more obvious.
Instead, use a light mousse to style your hair. Unlike gel and wax, mousse adds volume to your hair and makes it look thicker, especially when you apply it properly by wetting your hair first and blow drying it after.
If you have large patches of thin strands, you can also use hair fiber products like Toppik® to cover them up and make them less obvious.
These fibers are usually made using keratin protein and designed to bond to your hair temporarily for a thicker look.
There is something soothing about a scalp massage but, performed regularly, it could do more than just help you destress – it could stimulate hair growth as well.
According to the results of a small Japanese study, regular scalp massage boosts circulation to the hair follicles which may boost hair growth and increase hair thickness over time (at 24 weeks after initiation of scalp massage).
To reap the benefits of scalp massage for yourself, follow these steps:
Sit comfortably in your favorite chair.
Place the fingertips of both hands on your scalp, crossing them slightly.
Apply firm pressure with your fingertips, moving them in a circular motion.
Massage each spot for 1 to 2 seconds, slowly moving your fingers backward from your hairline to the nape of your neck.
Repeat the process on both sides of your head until you’ve covered the entire scalp.
To maximize the benefits of scalp massage, you should plan to spend about 5 minutes a day massaging your scalp. According to the previously mentioned study, daily scalp massage has the potential to improve the thickness of your hair when practiced continually for 24 weeks.
If you are struggling with styling your thin hair, don’t lose hope. You have options.
Don’t forget, you can always try finasteride and minoxidil as another effort to help slow your hair thinning down – or even stop it in its tracks.