20 Taper Comb Over Haircuts That Will Help Revive Your Style

Your guide to rocking the taper comb over haircut.

Lost count of the number of times you’ve asked your barber for “the same as usual, please mate” and feel like it might be time to try a new hairstyle? Well, if you’re looking for a fresh style that’s classic and easy to style, the taper comb over haircut might be just the ‘do you’ve been looking for.

The taper comb over haircut is a short men’s cut which features a side parting where the hair is ‘combed over’ to one side, paired with a modern tapered fade for added shape. From workwear-worthy cuts to more relaxed, casual styles, it’s the haircut that doesn’t stop giving. For the best examples of the comb over taper on different hair types, just keep scrolling…

Curly Comb Over

Taper comb over haircut: Black and white photo of a man with a curly taper fade haircut
Curly cuts are a massive trend for men right now. Credit: Instagram.com/dario_d_bordon

Have a naturally curly mop? Luckily for you, curly hair for men has never been as coveted as it is right now and it just so happens that the taper comb over haircut caters to wavy and curled textures really well. Credit: @dario_d_bordon

Hard Part

Taper comb over haircut: Blonde man with a comb over and taper fade, with a shaved parting
You can accentuate your parting with a shaved hard part. Credit: Instagram.com/brett.drouin

The comb over is a classic men’s look but if conventional isn’t really your thing and you’re after something with more of an edge, why not combine old and new by adding in a shaved detail?

You can keep it minimal but impactful with a defined shaved parting like this guy, or go all out with a design of your choice. Zigzags, anyone? Credit: @brett.drouin

Modern Quiff

photo from above of a brunette man in the barbers chair with a quiffed up taper comb over hair cut styled with wet look gel
The modern day Elvis quiff reinvented. Credit: Instagram.com/anthony_huerta88

Like to look dapper at all times? In that case, turn to the hair icons of days gone by and try styling your comb over into a peaked quiff or pompadour. Are we fans? Uh-huh-huh! Credit: @anthony_huerta88

Editor’s tip: Want to take on the quiff? Starting on damp hair, squeeze some of the VO5 Mega Hold Styling Gel into your fingertips and work it through your hair, making sure it’s well distributed throughout.

Next, use a fine-toothed comb to define your parting and create your comb over, then finish up by using your hairdryer to dry the hair and style it into your desired shape.

Shadow Fade

photo from above of a guy with light brown/dark blonde hair with a shadow taper faded haircut with a comb over
Create a smooth transition from long to short with a soft shadow fade. Credit: Instagram.com/worldstarofbarbers

The shadow fade effect is a really popular option for guys, but to make the most of it you’ll need to keep on top of your trims.

To make the shadow effect last as long as possible, ask your barber to take it a little shorter than you usually would. This way you’ll be able to leave it longer before having to get it cut again and as it grows out it’ll look even better. Credit: @worldstarofbarbers

Skin Fade

side close up photo of a brown haired guy with a comb over hair cut with a skin fade on the sides and a short beard
Show some skin with a close shave. Credit: Instagram.com/hubbard_14

A more extreme version of a taper fade, the skin fade (AKA a bald fade) is exactly what it sounds like; it’s a cut that fades from your longest length to a super short or, sometimes, an entirely bald skin look.

Have naturally thin hair or suffering with hair loss? Asking your barber to add in a fade like this is a great hair hack to make the most of your remaining hair and give the illusion of fuller-looking locks. Credit: @hubbard_14

Neat Comb Over

side profile of a brunette guy wearing a smart shirt with a neat taper comb over haircut
Sharpen up for work or school with a smart, formal variation. Credit: Instagram.com/hairstylistmarialeal

A sleek, slick take on the taper comb over haircut, this smart look is ideal for when you want to look professional in a business setting or for more formal events.

Keep your fade short on the sides for a precise look and you’ll never have a hair out of place. Credit: @hairstylistmarialeal

Grown out Taper Fade

brunette man standing outside in front of a tree wearing a leather jacket and sungalsses with a grown out taper comb over hair cut
Growing out your hair doesn’t have to be a painful process. Credit: Instagram.com/kochifaraj

Considering keeping the length a little bit longer than usual? Or going through the process of growing out a shorter cut? A grown out taper fade is just as impactful and gives the look a whole new, more hipster vibe.

Stars like Adam Levine and David Gandy have both rocked looks like this, so there’s plenty of inspo out there and, honestly, if those guys say it’s cool, what more convincing do you need really? Credit: @kochifaraj

Editor’s tip: Never used a hairspray before? Well, turns out they’re not just for girls.

Hairsprays like the VO5 Mega Hold Hairspray are better for guys with mid-long length hair as while it still provides a firm hold, the fine mist won’t weigh your hair down like a thicker, waxy product might do.

Taper Beard Combo

side close up shot of a brown haired man with a long comb over cut with a taper fade and groomed facial hair
Fade your beard into your hair with a gradual taper, getting longer towards the top layers of your hair. Credit: Instagram.com/los_coker

In the progress of growing out a beard but not sure how you’re going to pair the hair on your face with the hair on your head?

As the taper fade already graduates to a shorter length around ear level, why not just keep the fade going right through your sideburns into your beard? This will make it all flow together as one cohesive look, for a well-groomed and maintained effect. Credit: @los_coker

Editor’s tip: It’s not just the hair on your head that needs your grooming attention. Take care of your beard by using the TONI&GUY Frizz Taming Beard Balm to keep it moisturised and frizz-free.

Extreme Taper

Taper comb over haircut: Man with brown, combed-over tapered hair, wearing a denim shirt, navy coat and bow tie
Take your look to the extreme.

Trying to be more daring with your style? Then you have to give this extreme tapered combover a try with its bold, contrasting skin fade.

Precise Taper Comb over Haircut

Taper comb over haircut: Brown haired man with a neat taper comb over haircut with fade detail
Neat and slick, this look would make a great style for the office. Credit: Instagram.com/nickbarford

This precise, well-defined cut is for the man who likes to look well-groomed whatever the occasion. Be sure to style your hair into a side-swept pompadour to accentuate your defined parting and sharp hairline. Credit: @nickbarford

Subtle Taper

Taper comb over haircut: Photo of a man on the street with brown hair in a subtle taper comb over style, wearing a navy suit and using his phone
If you’re looking for some subtle shaping, this is perfect.

The versatility of this style means that you can easily incorporate a subtle taper into your style without departing too drastically from your usual ‘do.

Side-Swept Taper

Taper comb over haircut: Dark haired man with a sweeping comb over hairstyle with a shaved side fade
Create a more relaxed effect with a side-swept finish. Credit: Instagram.com/drewdehairstylist

Thanks to its casual, undone style, this relaxed side-swept style is great for those who don’t like their hair to look too ‘done’. All you need to do is ask your barber to keep your top layers long, then when it comes to styling just take a matt look wax and rake your fingers through to create a swooped effect.

Taper Comb over on Thick Hair

Taper comb over haircut: Barber photo of a ginger man with a comb over taper haircut with facial hair
Take the height up a notch with a structured quiff. Credit: Instagram.com/troyargones

The taper comb over haircut is a good option for those with thick hair, as it allows you to accentuate your luscious locks while bringing shape and control to the look. One of the major pros of the tapered fade is that it takes away some of the weight from the sides, so it’s particularly worth bearing in mind if you’ve got thick or curly hair. Credit: @troyargones

Brushed Back Taper

Taper comb over haircut: Brown haired man with a brushed back taper haircut, wearing a white shirt tucked into beige trousers and standing in front of a mint green background
A brushed back haircut always looks sharp.

We may traditionally think of comb overs being worn to the side, but that’s not the only way. Shake things up by brushing your hair back rather than to one side to give the look a different vibe.

Soft Comb Over

Man with blonde hair styled in a combover
Credit: indigitalimages.com

This style is the hair equivalent of putting on your best suit and tie, so you’re sure to look like a total boss.

Viking Comb Over

Man with light brown combover and beard

Channel Björn Ironside with this Viking inspired comb over and beard combo.

Salt & Pepper Comb Over

Man with brown salt and pepper combover
Credit: Instagram.com/shi.flow

If greys are starting to pop we suggest embracing them and rock a unique salt & pepper syle. Credit: @shi.flow

Surf Style Comb Over

Man with blonde hair swept back comb over

To get this voluminous combover, blow-dry hair forward using a barrel brush and when your hair is dry sweep your hair back and over to the side using your fingers.

Suave Comb Over

Man with brown hair in a combover

Keep your comb over and beard looking fresh by using a shine-boosting styling wax.

Editor’s tip: Shape and mould your style with the VO5 Styling Wax. Ideal for neat cuts, use this wax to give your hair long-lasting hold without the crunchy feel.

Precise Part

Man with blonde combover
Credit: Instagram.com/kay.mars

A hard parting works well when paired with a fade as it helps to create a distinctive look and feel to the hair. Credit: @kay.mars