Fades are getting very popular lately, and it’s a trend that’s showing no sign of slowing down. Although still a relatively new phenomenon, we can already see that fades are going to be a big part of this year’s fashion trends.
In this article, we are going to talk about the number 2 fade. We will explain what a number 2 fade is, discuss the different types of number 2 fades and try to help you decide which number two fade haircut will suit you best.
So let’s start by talking about what a number two fade actually is.
What is the number 2 fade?
A number 2 fade is just one of the many types of fades that you can try. The number 2 fade gets its name because the shortest part of your hair will be trimmed with a number 2 guard (1/4 inch 6mm). This will be the lowest part of your hair on the side and back, and it will get longer as you move up.
To create the fade effect, a transition must be made from the shortest hair (number 2) to the longer hair as you go upwards. This happens gradually by using different guards like the #3 or #4, so you can’t understand where longer hair starts and shorter hair finishes.
Doing a nice smooth fade is really difficult, which is why we highly recommend seeking the services of a professional barber or hairstylist. If you decide to do it yourself at home, make sure to check our article “best hair clippers for fades” to find a good clipper that will help you achieve a good result.
Now that you know what a number two fade is let’s talk about the different types of number 2 fades.
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Different Types of Number 2 Fades
There are many ways to style your number 2 fade, and this is what we will discuss in this section.
The main difference between the different types of number 2 fades is how high or low the transition from the shortest to the longest hair length happens. So depending on how high or low you want your fade to begin, there are 3 types of number 2 fades: The low number 2 fade, the high number 2 fade, and the mid number 2 fade.
Related Article: Low Fade Vs Mid Fade: The Differences & The Best Styles [Photos]
Number 2 Low Fade Haircut
In the low number two fade, the transition from the shortest hair length to the longest hair length begins one inch (2,5cm) above the ear.
Number 2 High Fade Haircut
In the high number two fade, the transition from the shortest to the longest hair length begins close to the top of your head, at the temples.
Number 2 Mid-Fade Haircut
Finally, in the mid-number two fades, the transition from the shortest to the longest hair length begins in the middle between the low and high number two fades.
If you are looking for a bolder look, then the high number 2 fade is probably what you are looking for. This type of fade will give you a more distinct look cause the majority of your hair on the sides and back of your head will be on the shorter side.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a subtler look, you should go with one of the low number 2 fade hairstyles. This type of fade will give your hair a more subtle look as the transition will be less visible.
Now that we’ve talked about the different types of fade, let’s talk about what length you should go for on top.
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What Length Should You Go For On Top?
After you have decided on what kind of number 2 fade you want for your side and back hair, you should decide on the length of your hair on top. You can go with a number of variations from very short to very long.
As a rule of thumb, the bigger the contrast between your side and back hair with your top hair, the more striking your look will be. So if you want a bolder fade, go for longer top hair and vice versa.
A bit later in this article, we are going to talk about some really nice number 2 fade styles. But before we go there, let’s talk about the taper fade style.
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The Number 2 Taper Fade
Remember when we talked about the low, high, and mid-number two fades? Well, there is an even lower fade that is called the number 2 taper fade.
For the number 2 taper fade, you should trim only your sideburns and the lower part of your neckline with a number 2 guard on.
The transition happens really low, just above the ear. The biggest part of your side and back hair is trimmed with a bigger guard.
Number 2 taper fade is a great choice if you are looking for a really subtle look. It will be less visible than the mid or low number two fades as it begins really low, just above your ears.
A final consideration you should make when you are choosing a low, mid, or high number 2 fade is how sharp the transition is.
The sharpness of the transition is determined by the guard number you will use to blend with the number 2 guard. There are 2 main options for this: The number 3 guard and the number 4 guard.
Number 2 fade into number 3
As you can understand from the name, the number 2 length (6mm 1/4 inch) is blended with the number 3 length (10mm 3/8 inch). In this fade option, the transition is smooth and nice as the difference between the number 2 and number 3 length is not that big.
Related Article: Number 3 Fade: Top Styles [With Photos], Length, and More
Number 2 fade into number 4
This option is more striking as the difference between the number 2 length (6mm 1/4 inch) and the number 4 length (13mm 1/2 inch) is bigger. The transition will be less smooth but can work well on some face shapes. So it really depends on personal preference which option you will go for.
Now that you know what a number 2 fade is and the options you have for it, let’s talk about some nice-looking types of fade haircuts.
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Number 2 Fade Hair Styles
Number 2 Fade with a man bun
This is a really cool and bold look you can wear to any occasion. It is quite striking as the contrast between the short side and back hair with the long top hair is pretty obvious.
If you are looking to make this look even more striking, go for a high fade, so the contrast will be more visible and go well with your man bun.
Number 2 Fade Undercut
Another nice hairstyle you can go for is the undercut with a number 2 fade. This style has been made popular by the show Peaky Blinders. If you still haven’t understood what an undercut is, here is a quick explanation:
The undercut combines really short hair on the sides with slicked-back hair on top. There is a clear and defined line between the two, and it creates a sharp look that is both stylish and striking.
Undercut with a number 2 fade will be as striking as any undercut style but smoother, as the contrast will not be as harsh as the original one.
We think you have to go with a high fade for this haircut, as it will look better with the slicked-back hair.
Number 2 Side Part Fade
A similar hairstyle to the undercut is the number 2 side part fade. This number 2 fade haircut is quite similar to the undercut, but the hair on the top of your head is combed to the side instead of being slicked back.
It is a really cool look that will go well with every face shape. The only thing you have to pay attention to is the length of your hair when it comes to creating this style. You should have at least 6-7 inches on top in order to make this hairstyle work.
Number 2 Fade Pompadour
The pompadour is basically long hair on top styled into a lifted shape to look like a wave. This style is combined with short side and back hair that creates a beautiful contrast between the long top and the sharp faded sides.
It is a really unique and cool look that is perfect for people with long thick hair. You need plenty of length on top to be able to pull off this style, so keep this in mind if you are thinking about trying it.
Also, keep in mind that the pompadour fade haircut is a high-maintenance haircut, as you will have to style your hair every day.
Again, if you want this look to be more striking as well as fitting for a more edgy event, go for a high number 2 fade.
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Number 2 Fade Quiff
Quiff is a really cool and stylish haircut that combines short hair on the sides and back with longer-length hair on top, usually swept up. The front part of your top hair is long and styled in a quiff.
Again this is a long haircut that is perfect for people with long thick hair. It will also look better if you have wavy hair as it will make your quiff more prominent, which is the desired effect.
The fade type doesn’t matter, as the quiff will draw all the attention to it.
number 2 fade Buzz Cut
We have talked about many long number 2 fade haircuts, but it is time to mention a short one. And it is no other than the number 2 fade buzz cut.
This really cool and edgy hairstyle for people who want to look athletic and masculine.
The top part of your hair will be slightly longer than the longest part of the fade. The contrast between the two is really nice and smooth, as the hair length is almost the same.
Related Article: Buzz Cut Lengths: Complete Guide from 0 to 8
We have shared everything we know about the number two fade haircut styles, and we hope that our article has been helpful.
Now that you know all the technical stuff about this haircut, you can confidently go to your barber and request exactly what you want.
Just be sure that he has plenty of experience with this type of fade so he can pull it off perfectly.
Remember to take into account your head shape, face shape, and hair type before making a choice. You don’t want to go for an edgy haircut that won’t look good on you or go for a low fade if you have thick hair.
Getting the right haircut is not only about the length and volume of your hair but also about knowing what will look good on you!
If you have any questions or extra advice, leave them in the comments!
Russell is the founder of themensattitude.com. He is a barber a beard enthusiast and he is obsessed with trying men’s lifestyle products and blog about them. If you have any questions you can hit him up via the contact page.