If you’ve successfully transitioned your hair from a clean, short style through the awkward in-between phase, you’re probably ready for some mid-length inspiration. What’s great about adding length is that your options open up, giving you much more flexibility to choose a new style or change it up.
Whether you want to keep your length all over or crop the sides to leave your hair long on top, you’ve got plenty of possibilities to choose from. Check out our favorite medium hairstyles for men and then book an appointment with a local styling Pro to freshen up your look!
1. Blowout with tapered sides
You can create a distinctive look by tapering the sides and maintaining just enough top length for a blowout. Your stylist should be able to give you one of these by styling your hair as they blow-dry it. It’s not an overly complicated technique, but you’ll need a hair dryer and styling brush to DIY at home. You can also go to the salon if the blowout prices are within your budget.
2. Medium cut with wavy hair
Naturally wavy hair is perfect for creating a deceptively fuss-free look. Let your stylist know you want to keep your length. Then, they can work with your hair type to shape it in a way that looks great as it grows.
3. Shaggy top
This is one of the simplest medium hairstyles for men. It may seem as easy as just letting your hair grow out, but you should still get it trimmed every two to three months even if you’re growing it out. It’s also important to maintain healthy locks with conditioner that’s specifically formulated for your hair type.
4. Natural hair with fade
If you love the look and texture of your natural hair, but want a style that’s a little more dynamic when growing it out, try a fade. The longer hair on top will blend especially well with a high or mid fade, but you can always ask your stylist for their recommendation for your unique look.
The classic pompadour is one of the medium haircuts that men are returning to for a chic blend of vintage and modern styling. You’ll need several inches of hair to achieve this look — along with a high-quality pomade or putty.
6. Medium-length faux hawk
This is one of the more distinctive men’s medium-length haircut options out there. If you want to add another dimension, it also pairs especially well with dynamic coloring. Try dyeing the longer hair while keeping the cropped sections natural.
7. Spiky cut with tapered sides
Want to change up your usual look? Try getting a tasteful side taper at your next barbershop visit. Ask them to leave just enough length on top to spike and have them style it for you if you’ve never done it before. If you don’t have a preferred wax or pomade, they should be able to point you in the right direction.
8. Mid fade with long top
Fades are phenomenal options for adding depth to your look without the need for drastic styling changes or specialty hair products (unless you want them!). A mid fade will start a little above your temple and get progressively shorter toward your sideburns. Just remember to maintain your fade between appointments to keep it looking fresh.
9. Burst fade
Another great fade option is a burst fade, which curves around the ear while leaving length on the back of the neck. This fade leaves you with a lot of flexibility to style the longer hair left on top and in the back.
10. Medium-length twist-out
A twist-out requires conditioner, oil, hair gel or spray, clips, a comb, and a bit of patience. The whole process can take multiple days, but the results are well worth the time and effort if you want a look with plenty of volume and dimension.
11. Natural part with highlights
Mid-length hair gives you plenty of haircut options, but you can also re-style the cut you’ve got. When it comes to parts, sometimes the best path is the one of least resistance. Try working with your hair’s natural part and adding subtle highlights for a look that complements the hair you have.
12. Top knot
Looking for an alternative to a typical bun? You may have found your new look. A top knot is a chic, distinctive style that’s easy to maintain, especially when paired with close-cropped sides.
13. Bowl cut
The ‘90s are making a major comeback — and so are some of its iconic hairstyles. The modern take on a bowl cut features long bangs, a shaggy top, and cropped sides. Keep in mind that this cut works best for those with straight to moderately wavy hair.
14. Comb-over with high fade
For a chic pairing with a high fade, try a comb-over. To execute this style properly, you’ll need to part your hair as far to the side as you can. Comb away from that part and toward the back, applying a pomade or other styling gel to hold it in place.
15. Curls with lots of volume
Love your curly locks? Wear them proudly by promoting extra volume through careful maintenance and upkeep. Opt for moisturizing shampoo and conditioner to keep them healthy, and consider pre-pooing with a product designed for curly hair to really maximize volume and vitality.
16. Tousled strands with beard
Tousled hair evokes styles ranging from low-key bedhead to laid-back and beachy. It also makes a great medium-length hairstyle for men with straight to wavy locks. Finish out the look with a well-coiffed beard for a casual yet intentional appearance.
17. Pompadour with side part
This variation on the popular pompadour is one of our favorite medium hairstyles for men with thick hair. As with the standard pompadour, this version thrives on volume. Rather than combing it straight back, opt for a deep part and comb toward the opposite side.
18. Bro flow
If your mid-length locks are getting a little longer, why not go with the (bro) flow? This playfully named style works beautifully with wavy hair of any thickness. Try experimenting with different parts to see what looks best with your particular hair type, face shape, and preferences.
19. Brush up with high fade
Since a brush up adds a significant amount of height to your head, it matches up nicely with a high fade, which draws the eye upward. Apply liberal amounts of your favorite holding product, such as a paste, clay, pomade, or wax.
20. Short ponytail
If you have just enough length to tie your hair back without forming a bun, you can consider going with a short ponytail. Try centering it just a little bit up from the crown of your head and securing it with a hairband.
21. Quiff with taper
Similar to a pompadour, a quiff is long on top and short on the sides and back. To create this look, you’ll want to brush up and back, creating height toward the front above your forehead. Pair this with a taper to keep the short parts clean.
Medium-length locs are a great choice if you’re able to put in the time and effort to perfect them. This look can also be combined with a fade or taper, leaving the locs long on top while cropping the sides and back.
23. Bald fade with long locs
Looking for another fade option to pair with a longer cut? Consider a bald fade — as the name implies, this fade goes right down to the skin at its shortest point. Try pairing this with other staples from this list, like locs or curls.
24. Faux hawk with natural hair
If styling features like fades or tapers aren’t your thing, try preserving length and keeping the sides and back the same length. By styling the top into a faux hawk, you’ll create a low-maintenance, uniform look.
25. Layers for wavy hair
This is a medium-length hairstyle that men have been sporting for decades, and it remains as timeless as it is versatile. Ask your stylist to maintain the length and add layers to give your locks more depth and structure.
26. Flat top with sponge curls
One of the throwback men’s medium to short hairstyles that’s making a comeback today is the flat top. You can achieve this style with sponge curls for a more textured look. Consider adding color to make it truly your own.
27. Thick and coily hair
Men’s medium-length hairstyles have changed quite a bit over the decades, but keeping it simple never goes out of style. If you love your thick and coily locks, stop in to see your barber every six to eight weeks to update your lines and maintain shape and volume. You could even consider adding a line-up cut to add another layer of style.
28. Mid fade with twist-out
If you love a twist-out and want to add a little more dimension to your look, try adding a mid fade. A mid fade should blend with the vertical shape of a twist-out, creating a more complete hairstyle.
29. Mid fade with curly top
One of the simplest medium to short haircuts for men with curly hair is a mid fade. If you like to show off your curls but are trying to bring a touch more shape to your look, ask your barber for a mid fade to round things out.
30. Grown-out layers
The simplest way to style medium-length hair is to grow your layers out. While this might seem straightforward enough, you’ll want to maintain it properly with conditioner designed for your hair type.
31. Natural side part comb over
As your hair accrues length, you may decide you prefer not to trim the sides. Prefer to keep length all around but want a new styling option? Try combing over from a deep part, right where the hair on the top of your head meets the hair on the side.
32. Slicked-back cut with undercut
One of our favorite bold medium-length hairstyles for straight hair is an undercut, which involves trimming the sides and back down while leaving the length on top. Slick the top back and tie it up if it’s long enough. You can even add a fade or taper if you’d like.
33. Loose, curly locs
If you’re looking for a medium-length dreadlock style, try keeping it loose and curly. This stylish take will give you a deceptively carefree look you can pair with plenty of additional styling options.
34. Spiky cut with severe part
For a distinctive mid-length styling option you may be able to apply without a specific haircut, try spiking with a quality wax, mousse, or other preferred product. Set the look off with a severe part at the very edge of your hairline for some tasteful asymmetry.
35. Undercut with tousled top
For a hip look that gives you the freedom to grow your hair long, tie it back, or style just about any way you like, try an undercut with a tousled top. If you have especially thick hair, this will give your locks a little more breathing room.
36. Natural waves
Men with naturally wavy hair have plenty of styling options. If none of the above stand out as a great fit for your look, try leaving it wavy and letting nature do the rest. Just be sure to upkeep it properly with shampoo and conditioner designed to optimize your unique hair texture.
The mullet spent the last decade or so being the punchline of jokes, but it’s come back full force as a popular hairstyle. This cut is “business in the front, party in the back,” meaning your hair in the front is cut shorter while the back is longer. This look makes a statement and works well with many different hair textures, from pin straight to tight coils.
38. Medium twists
Twists are a casual protective style and the perfect choice for a medium hairstyle when you don’t want to spend as much time in the braiding chair. Maintenance for twists is a little more robust than with braids, but you can easily touch up your twists yourself at home. Ask your braider for a quick tutorial if you’re unsure how it works and your twists can last you weeks.
39. Half-up bun
If you want to show off your length while keeping your hair out of your eyes, a half-up bun is perfect for you. All you need is a cut on the longer side (just enough length to pull it back) and a hair tie. Just gather up the hair above your ears and pull it into a bun for a simple hairstyle that’s laid-back and stylish.
The mohawk is a punk staple that anyone can rock. Straight and wavy hair might need help from a little gel to get that signature look, but this look is relatively simple to style.
41. French crop
The French crop, also known as a Caesar cut, is when the sides and back of your hair are cut short with a longer top that’s combed forward. This cut is great for disguising receding hairlines and works well for straight to curly hair.
42. Classic flat top
The flat top is a throwback haircut popular for people with tightly coiled hair. For the flat top, the sides are left short, while the top of your head is left long and cut straight across the top, creating a flat surface. High tops use pomade to hold it all in place and can be a low-maintenance style, depending on your hair texture.
43. Hair design
Hair designs, also known as hair tattoos, are when a barber etches a design into the shaved part of your hair. Many barbers specialize in hair tattoos and can make almost any idea you have come to life, giving your haircut some artistic flair.
44. Windswept layers
If you have naturally wavy hair, easygoing layers look great on medium-length hair. Try using a sea salt or texturizing spray to help define your waves and give you extra volume. This look is low maintenance, easygoing, and can even help you stretch out that time between visits to the barber.
45. Straight-back cornrows
Straight-back cornrows are a classic hairstyle that’s perfect for medium-length hair. These cornrows run straight from your forehead to the nape of your neck and work particularly well for medium hair. Once your hair is a bit longer, you can even pull it into a bun at the back of your head. To switch it up, ask your braider to try out different parts to make this classic look your own.
46. Asymmetrical shaved side
If you’re looking for an even edgier take on the undercut but still want to show off your length, try shaving just one side. This works great for those who prefer deep parts and looks great on any hair type. Pair it with a hair design on the shaved side to really make this look stand out.
47. Sideswept bangs
If you just got bangs or a fringe cut and you’re not quite sure what to do with them yet, give sideswept bangs a try. This look works with many different haircuts, so experiment with different parts when testing it out. Just use a bit of hairspray for some hold and brush, or use a blow-dryer to pull your bangs forward and then to the side.
48. Medium afro
For Type 4 hair textures, the afro is a look that’s never truly gone out of style. The great thing about afros is they work with any length. While the classic version shows off ultra-long coils, a casual medium-length ‘fro is also great for an everyday look.
49. Teased top
If your hair’s on the thinner side, it’s all about maintaining volume to make your hair look thicker. Try teasing or backcombing your hair to give it more texture and volume. To do this, take a section of your hair, hold it by the ends away from your head, and comb from end to root. Give it a quick spritz with some dry shampoo or texturizing spray to give the illusion of thicker hair.
50. Clean comb back
Combed back hair works great on straight and wavy medium-length cuts when you want to keep your hair out of your face without completely slicking it back. Use a light hairspray or wax to give your hair some hold without using gel. Use products sparingly to avoid a greasy or crunchy look, and lightly comb your hair back. If you have trouble with your hair going flat, try blow-drying it with your head hanging upside down before styling this look.
51. Knotless braids
If you’ve avoided braids in the past because you have a sensitive scalp, knotless braids are perfect for you. These braids are lighter and pull on your scalp less, making them ideal if braids have given you headaches in the past. This look is great if you’d like a fun style that doesn’t require a lot of upkeep between appointments.
Styling tips for medium hairstyles for men
When you’re learning how to style a new haircut, there’s always a certain level of trial and error until you find what works for you. Some people love the ritual of taking the time to perfect their hair in the morning, while others want to roll out of bed and get out the door without needing to glance in the mirror.
The easiest way to ensure that your medium-length hairstyle will work for you is to ask your stylist about it! They’re professionals and are sure to have ideas about how you can get your haircut to work for you. Bring plenty of photos, so they have an idea of what hairstyles you like, then you can figure out what will work for you.
You can ask your hairstylist for their recommendations for different products, or even ask for a quick explanation of how they styled your air in the salon so you can replicate it at home. Remember that your stylist has had plenty of practice, so you’ll likely need a couple tries to get it right. Try playing around with these variables until you find a routine that works for you:
- How often to wash your hair
- What styling products to use
- Whether you air-dry or blow-dry your hair
- Whether or not you use hot tools
As you can see, there are tons of medium hairstyles that men can choose from. In fact, the best part of hair this length may be its versatility. Once you’ve settled on your next look, schedule an appointment with your local barber to make it happen.