The reason a large number of you good men out there may already be familiar with the style is that it’s the typical aesthetic of male pattern baldness.
It can almost be considered an end-point. A look that men who first notice a receding hairline may well have to contend with at some point in their future.
Although it may not be a style that you wear out of choice, it can still work and look fashionable when approached correctly.
This article is going to dive deeper into the topic. I’ll first show you what it looks like, followed by some pictures of variations for inspiration.
What Does Being Bald On Top With Hair On The Sides Look Like?
There are two main factors that lead to variety among men with this style. One is the length of the hair on the sides. The other is the degree of balding on the top.
There are those who choose to let the sides grow, while others choose to trim or buzz them down short.
In general, the shorter the sides, the better. Being bald on top with long hair on the sides can look untidy and rarely ever looks stylish. I’ll talk about that in more detail a bit later on.
Buzzing the sides down short can look great. It usually leads to a more defined appearance to the jawline and can look debonair even when bald on top.
The degree of baldness on top can also vary; from mild recession at the temples to a widow’s peak, to complete baldness.
It’s important to note that the style is usually a tell-tale sign of age. It’s intrinsically associated with the process of age-related, male pattern baldness.
Some men are completely OK with this, and why not? After all, it’s an entirely natural process that a huge proportion of the male population has to contend with.
But a large number of these men do look for ways to make the style more fashionable and stylish. Because of this, it’s important to use the power of style to your advantage. I’ll be showing you a few haircuts you could try out shortly.
What’s The Name For Bald On Top With Hair On The Sides?
There isn’t a formal name for this look, but the terms “U-Shaped hairline” or “Horseshoe hairline” are often used.
However, if the temples are merely receding and haven’t disappeared yet, the term “M-Shaped hairline may be more appropriate due to the peaked appearance at the front.
This picture should make it clearer:
The term “Horseshoe Hairline” refers to the appearance of the hairline from above in the most advanced stages of balding.
It occurs as a result of hair loss at the temples having advanced backward, hair loss at the crown having advanced forward, and the two merging in the middle to form a completely bald appearance on top.
The hair on the sides and back isn’t lost and this is what causes the typical bald appearance. It isn’t completely “bald” because the hair on the sides and back remains unless it is trimmed and shaved off.
Now that you’ve learned what it’s called, it’s time to learn what you can do with it.
Haircuts For Bald Tops With Hair On The Sides
As I mentioned earlier, allowing the sides to simply grow long is difficult to make stylish. Being bald on top does make style choice quite restricted; hence this incredibly short list. But there are options.
Here are three styles you can look upon for inspiration.
1. Induction Style Buzz Cut
Regardless of how bald you may be on top, a buzz cut is always an option. Buzz cuts have always been kind to balding men, as they often make receding hairlines look less obvious.
This is particularly effective when the temples are only mildly receded, but it can also make a widow’s peak look less obvious as well.
Men who fall into these categories can also consider a high fade at the sides. The faded sides can almost absorb and camouflage the temple recession – this makes it look even less obvious.
If you’re looking to DIY it, a fade probably isn’t the option for you. But it’s important to be aware of.
Even when a man is rocking a Horseshoe hairline – completely bald on top – buzzing down the sides can still look very sophisticated.
It’s an easy way to make a bald top look instantly more stylish while making the jawline and cheekbone look more pronounced at the same time.
A simple induction-style buzz cut is also incredibly easy to maintain. All you’ll need is a pair of decent clippers to get the job done. You’ll probably have to do it once every 1 – 2 weeks to prevent the sides becoming untidy.
But you’ll quickly begin to love the convenience.
2. Fully Shaved
It’s astonishing just how much Bruce Willis has done for the balding community. He really did take it to masculine new heights when he went fully shaved.
Although this isn’t really a style for a man with “hair on the sides”, it’s still an option that men should strongly consider. That option being removing the hair on the sides and back.
A shaved head can look fantastic when done properly. Very stylish and very sleek indeed.
While being bald on top with hair on the sides is a tell-tale sign of aging, being completely shaved oozes virility and maturity instead.
It’s usually more stylish and fashionable than keeping the hair on the sides as well, although this is, of course, partly down to personal preference.
Maintenance requirements need to be taken into consideration, however. While a buzz cut can be done every one or two weeks, head shaving needs to be carried out at least every 2 to 3 days.
This is because short or medium stubble sprouting on a smooth scalp can look more obvious than the same amount of growth on a buzz cut.
The smoother the bald head, the more frequently you’ll need to maintain it.
To shave your head, you can either use an electric shaver or a manual razor. An electric shaver has the benefit of being quick and efficient, while also having the ability to use it dry (usually).
A manual razor (cartridge, safety, or straight), on the other hand, needs to be used with shaving gel, soap, or cream. Lubrication is necessary and this can add to the time required. However, you generally get a closer shave with a manual razor than an electric shaver.
This isn’t a tutorial on head shaving. But I just wanted you to know that although this option may sound daunting, it’s definitely one to strongly consider at a certain point. Many men love the result despite being nervous about it at first.
3. Crew Cut (Maybe)
You’ll have to hear me out on this one as you may be a little confused.
A Crew Cut is a type of buzz cut where the hair on top is significantly longer than the sides which are usually buzzed down short.
So, if you’re balding and not quite bald yet, you may well have enough hair on top to pull off a Crew Cut. The surprising thing is, you don’t need a whole lot of hair on top to be able to do this.
Having said that, you do need some.
I don’t want to dwell too long on this style, because I appreciate that a lot of men reading this may not be able to pull this off.
However, it’s just something to bear in mind. If you’ve got some hair on top, work with it. Visit your barber and ask what your options are. The chances are you’ve got more options than you may have initially thought you had.
Additional Tips For Men Who Are Bald On Top
Here are some additional tips for men who are bald on top but have hair on the sides. The tips are mainly style-focused, but there’s one that is quite important from a safety perspective.
1. Avoid Comb Overs At All Costs
It can be tempting to cling on to any follicles you may have left on top and try to use them to desperately cover up your balding top.
But this is almost always the wrong approach to take.
For one, comb overs usually make balding look more obvious, not less. But also, it’s simply the wrong way to deal with balding in the first place.
The sooner balding is accepted, the sooner you can start making it work for you. Baldness is a natural and incredibly masculine trait which is not only in trend but also objectively attractive when approached properly.
It’s obvious when a man is self-conscious and ashamed of his baldness. It’s also obvious when a man embraces baldness, approaching it with confidence, style, grace, and a hint of defiance.
I’d rather be in the second category.
2. Use Product
When bald on top, it’s easy to forget that you can still use styling products on the sides and the back.
A small amount of gel or wax can neaten and flatten strays, contouring and structuring the style as a whole.
3. Protect Yourself Against The Weather
Heat tends to escape pretty quickly from the top of the head. Not having hair on top can feel pretty frosty in the heart of the winter.
Be sure to wear a warm hat when necessary.
But even more important is the protection of the bald top against the sun. Hair loss at the top exposes your scalp in a way you wouldn’t have had to worry about before.
Sunscreen is crucially important for protection. It’s something you should always have at the front of your mind when heading out for a day in the sunshine.
4. Monitor Growth At The Back
Finally, this is just a quick reminder to never forget growth at the back. The sides are easy to monitor because they’re simply a lot more visible than growth at the back.
Allowing the back to grow long while remaining bald on top can lead to an odd appearance I’m sure you’d rather avoid.
Bald On Top With Long Hair On The Sides – Acceptable?
This style is one that most men should avoid. It’s not currently in style and is quite rare. However, occasionally, some men do manage to make it work.
When done wrong it can lead to an odd, eccentric appearance that’s eye-catching for the wrong reasons.
I don’t have a huge amount to say about the style – think long and hard before choosing it as your own, my friend.
The main takeaway point from this article is that baldness does still leave you with options.
It shouldn’t be something you live with. Instead, it should be something you embrace. It can look fantastic when approached with flair and style.
A huge number of men on this planet are bald on top with hair on the sides. The fact that some men pull it off while others don’t isn’t just down to luck or genetics.
If you’re one of these men, hopefully, the tips in this article will make sure you’re one of the ones who pull it off with finesse.