How to Style Your New Comb-Over Fade

Eunice Lucero | 25 April 2016

We’re going old school/new school with this one.

If you’re one of the dapper gentlemen sporting the comb over fade, congratulations for keeping on-trend with this popular haircut. The comb over is a classic style that never really go out of style, and latest iterations of this look feature a lot more details that keep it modern yet universally flattering. No wonder it’s the go-to hairstyle even for men with thinning hair!

A classic comb over doesn’t necessarily require the sides and back of the head to be shaven—the thinning can be done just with scissors. But in a fade, the back and sides are shaven using a pair of clippers, usually one to two guards lower than what your barber uses for the top of your head (Check out our handy-dandy barbershop terms for a clearer picture.). This gives the look a more retro tightness to it, which, ironically, is also what makes it really modern, as this look is one of 2016’s hottest hair trends. Read on to learn more about how to style this look:

How to Style a Comb Over Fade

Your tools to create this look are pretty simple: a comb, some pomade, a hair part, and depending on whether you want some volume or not, a blowdryer. Let’s get down to business:

 

comb over fade slick side part brown
Use a shine pomade for a truly slick, gleamy comb over. Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

Styling a neat comb over fade

1. Shampoo and condition your hair to get rid of any dirt and product buildup. You want this look to be immaculate. We like the warm, spicy, sexy scent of Axe Dark Temptation 2-in-1 Shampoo + Conditioner.

2. Towel-dry hair till damp (as in, not dripping wet). Take a dime-sized amount of pomade or wet-finish gel, such as Bed Head for Men by TIGI Power Play, and rub between palms. Distribute evenly throughout the tops of your hair and use any leftover product to mat down the remaining shorter hair on your parietal ridge. This is the bony part of your head where your skull begins to slope downwards.

3. Using a comb, emphasize your natural part (Tip: If your cowlick moves clockwise, your part is on the left; if counterclockwise, your part is on the right). Position the comb lengthwise on your part and begin to comb away from it, towards your ear. Repeat on other side.

 

comb over fade volumized
Volumized with a blowdryer, this version looks most dapper brushed back at a slight angle.

Styling a volumized comb over fade

1. For a style with more body, shampoo and condition as per usual to rid hair of buildup and encourage more lift. Dove Men+Care Oxygen Charge Fortifying Shampoo + Conditioner reduces stubborn residue and oiliness for an allover clean and airy feel.

2. Towel-dry hair until damp and begin to blow-dry, using fingers to diffuse heat all over strands.

3. Using a matte-finish wax this time, rake a dime-sized amount (we like the pliable feel of Bed Head for Men by TIGI Matte Separation) through the tops of hair, taking note of your natural part and using the remaining product to mat down the back and sides, if your fade starts lower.

4. Mold the hair on top to your desired angle using just your fingers (for a rougher look) or refine the front gently with your comb.

A note on choosing your hair product: A good tip to remember is that a neat comb over fade will always look its best with a water-based styling product with medium to firm hold—it provides that key slicked-back feel. For volume and body, choose a matte-finish product, like a non-greasy pomade or wax, for looser comb over styles.

How do you style your comb over fade?