1-2 Fade Haircut: The Ultimate Trend for Men in 2023

A 1-2 fade haircut is a short hairstyle that has grown in popularity among men of all ages. The style features hair at the sides and back of the head being cut with a number 1 (3.4mm) clipper at the bottom, and as you go up, it gradually transitions to a number 2 (6.4mm).

What makes it so versatile is that it can be styled in many ways, making it perfect for work or play.

If you’re looking to level up your grooming skills, Check out this Youtube video “How to FADE the # 2 into the # 1 guide | BARBER TUTORIAL”. You’ll learn valuable tips and tricks for achieving a seamless 1-2 fade that will have you looking sharp and confident.

History of Fade Haircuts

The fade haircut evolved from the strict grooming standards of the military, with newly enlisted cadets having their hair cut to skin level with sharp lines and angles to establish strength and discipline in the 1940s and 50s. With the advent of electric trimmers in the 1930s, the fade became more prevalent.

Today, there are different variations of the fade, including low, mid, and high fades. A 1-2 fade, for example, uses a number 1 clipper (3.4mm) at the bottom and transitions to a number 2 (6.4mm) as you move up.

different types of fade haircuts

The low fade haircut starts about an inch above the ear, whereas the mid fade is between the temple and the ear. The high fade haircut is at or above the part.”

The fade haircut has always been a trend for men.”

Fade haircuts are versatile and can be customized to fit a wide range of hairstyles and head shapes.

The Basics of the 1-2 Fade Haircut

A 1-2 fade haircut is a trendy and stylish short hairstyle for men. The fade starts with a number 1 clipper guard size that is 3.4mm at the bottom, while gradually transitioning to a number 2 guard size that is 6.4mm as it goes up.

This creates a faded effect that blends the hair from short to long, resulting in a smooth and sharp look.

To achieve this haircut, it is important to have a skilled barber who can execute the cut perfectly. The barber must be able to blend the fades smoothly to achieve a professional and clean look.

Any slight mistake can ruin the entire look of the haircut.

1-2 Fade Haircut

Therefore, when getting this haircut, it’s essential to communicate clearly with your barber regarding the look you want to achieve. The length of the fade haircut can be adjusted to complement your face shape and hair type.

The barber might recommend different haircut lengths based on your face shape and hair texture.

Popular 1-2 Fade Hairstyles

If you’re looking for a short, stylish haircut, the 1-2 fade is a great option. There are many different ways to style a 1-2 fade cut, so you can choose the one that fits your personal style.

Below are some popular 1-2 fade hairstyles:

Crop Haircut with Fade

The crop haircut with fade is a low-maintenance style that’s perfect for guys who don’t want to spend a lot of time styling their hair. It features a short, textured top that’s cut with scissors and fades down to a number 1 or 2 on the sides and back of the head.

Pompadour Fade Haircut

The pompadour fade haircut offers a classic, stylish look that’s perfect for special occasions. It features a longer top that’s styled into a sleek pompadour, while the sides and back of the head are faded down to a number 1 or 2.

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This style requires some pomade and styling time to maintain.

Buzz Cut Fade Haircut

The buzz cut fade haircut is a very short, low-maintenance style that’s perfect for guys who want a classic look. It features a number 3 buzz cut on top that fades down to a number 1 or 2 on the sides and back of the head.

Side Parting Fade Haircut

The side parting fade haircut features a longer top that’s styled into a side part, while the sides and back of the head are faded down to a number 1 or 2. This is a stylish, professional look that’s easy to maintain.

Quiff Fade Haircut

The quiff fade haircut is a modern, stylish look that features a longer top that’s styled into a voluminous quiff, while the sides and back of the head are faded down to a number 1 or 2. This style requires some pomade and styling time to maintain.

Faded Undercut

The faded undercut features a longer top that’s styled into a side-swept style, while the sides and back of the head are shaved or cut very short. This is a trendy, edgy look that requires some styling time to maintain.

Curly Undercut Fade

The curly undercut fade is a stylish, modern look that’s perfect for guys with curly hair. It features a longer top that’s styled into natural curls, while the sides and back of the head are faded down to a number 1 or 2.

This style requires some styling time to maintain, but it’s well worth the effort.

When choosing a 1-2 fade haircut, make sure to consider your face shape, hair type, and personal style to find the perfect look for you.

Things to Keep in Mind Before Getting a 1-2 Fade Haircut

Getting a 1-2 fade haircut is a big step for men who are looking to change their hairstyle. Before deciding to get this cut, consider the following:

  • Face shape: It’s important to choose a hairstyle that suits your face shape. A 1-2 fade works well on most face shapes, but it’s especially flattering on men with a square or oval face.
  • Hair texture: The texture of your hair is also an important consideration. If you have thin or fine hair, a 1-2 fade may not be the best option for you. Similarly, if you have curly or wavy hair, it may be more difficult to achieve the desired look.
  • Lifestyle: Consider your daily routine and the time you have available for styling your hair. If you have a busy schedule or prefer low-maintenance hairstyles, a 1-2 fade may be a great choice for you.
  • Styling options: While a 1-2 fade is a versatile haircut, not all styling options may work for you. Take the time to research and find the best style that suits your hair and face.

By considering these factors, you can ensure that getting a 1-2 fade is the right decision for you and that you’ll be able to maintain and style it effectively.

Tips to Maintain Your 1-2 Fade Hairstyle

To keep your 1-2 fade hairstyle looking sharp and neat, it’s important to maintain it regularly. A trim every 2-3 weeks will maintain the fade’s gradual transition and prevent it from growing out unevenly.

When washing your hair, avoid using hot water as it can dry out your scalp and hair, instead use lukewarm water. Excessive use of shampoo can also strip your hair of its natural oils, so use a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner once or twice a week.

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For added definition and hold, use a small amount of hair wax or pomade to style your hair. However, avoid using too much product, as it can build up on your scalp over time and cause scalp irritation.

To keep your hair looking healthy and vibrant, follow a healthy diet and exercise regularly.

1-2 Fade Hairstyle

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a 1-2 fade?

A 1-2 fade haircut is a short style where the hair at the sides and back of the head is cut with a number 1 clipper (3.4mm) at the bottom, and as you go up, it gradually transitions to a number 2 (6.4mm).

What's the difference between a 1-2 fade and other fades?

The difference is the length of the clippers used. A 1-2 fade uses a number 1 clipper at the bottom and transitions to a number 2, while other fades may use different clipper lengths.

Can I wear a 1-2 fade to work?

It depends on the workplace and dress code. A 1-2 fade can be versatile and styled in different ways, so it may be possible to wear it to work in a more subtle and professional manner.

What are some styling options for a 1-2 fade?

Some styling options include a quiff, slicked back hair, side part, messy hair, pompadour, side swept hair, and curly hair. Choose a style that suits your personality and lifestyle.

How should I prep my hair for a 1-2 fade haircut?

Wash and dry your hair before cutting it. For thicker hair, use the shortest clipper guard settings at a lower area for a low fade or choose a high fade for more contrast.

The Style Icons Who Wore the 1-2 Fade

The 1-2 fade haircut is a classic style that has been popularized by various celebrities and historical figures throughout the years. Here are some of the most notable icons who have rocked this haircut:

Elvis Presley

One of the most iconic figures in music history, Elvis Presley was known for his pompadour hairstyle which incorporated a 1-2 fade. This hairstyle was characterized by a lot of volume in the front and a short, tapered cut at the back and sides.

Elvis Presley 1-2 fade haircut

David Beckham

The former football superstar is one of the most stylish men in the world and his 1-2 fade has become an iconic look. Beckham’s haircut features a mid to high fade and a longer length on top, which he styles in a variety of ways from slicked back to messy.

David Beckham 1-2 fade haircut

Marlon Brando

The celebrated actor was a style icon in his own right and the 1-2 fade was one of his signature looks. Brando’s haircut featured a long, wavy top and a gradual taper at the back and sides which accentuated his chiseled features.

Marlon Brando 1-2 fade haircut

Will Smith

The Fresh Prince of Bel Air was known for his fashion-forward looks, and his 1-2 fade was no exception. Smith’s haircut features a high fade and a short crop at the back and sides, with a longer length on top that he has styled in braids, curls, and more.

Will Smith 1-2 fade haircut

These are just a few examples of the many style icons who have popularized the 1-2 fade over the years. Whether you prefer a classic or modern twist, the 1-2 fade is a versatile and stylish haircut that is sure to turn heads.

1-2 Fade Haircut for Plus Size Men

Plus size men can benefit from the 1-2 fade haircut as it can create an illusion of slimmer facial features. The gradual transition from a number 1 clipper to a number 2 clipper at the top can elongate the face and draw attention away from the jawline.

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When styling the 1-2 fade, consider keeping the top hair slightly longer to balance out the proportions of the face. Textured or messy hairstyles can also add dimension to the hair and create a sleeker look.

Maintaining the cut requires regular visits to the barber to keep the fade clean and neat. Conditioning the hair regularly can also prevent frizz and maintain the texture of the hair.

Overall, the 1-2 fade haircut is a great option for plus size men who are looking for a low-maintenance yet stylish hairstyle that can flatter their features.

Tip: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles to find the perfect 1-2 fade that suits your face shape and personal style.

Grooming and Skincare for Men with a 1-2 Fade

A 1-2 fade haircut is a stylish yet low-maintenance hairstyle that enhances the masculine features of men. To keep up its aesthetic appeal, men need to prioritize grooming and skincare.

This involves regular haircuts to maintain the fade, washing and conditioning the hair to keep it healthy, and styling it appropriately with different products ranging from pomades to gels, depending on the desired look. To keep the skin healthy, men need to apply sunscreen, especially when staying under the sun for extended periods.

Moisturizing the skin is also essential, especially during the dry seasons, as well as staying hydrated. It is also essential to exfoliate the skin and apply a face mask occasionally to remove the dirt, oil, and blackheads that accumulate on the skin surface.

Men can also incorporate beard oil or moisturizer to their beard regimen to keep it looking neat and healthy, enhancing the overall look. Proper grooming and skincare practices can help men with a 1-2 fade look and feel their best.

What to Wear with a 1-2 Fade Haircut

Looking stylish is all about knowing how to match your outfits with your haircut. Here are some outfit ideas that pair perfectly with a 1-2 fade haircut:

Casual Outfit

A 1-2 fade is perfect for a modern, urban look. Pair this haircut with a bomber jacket, a basic white t-shirt, denim jeans, and white sneakers.

This outfit will give you a stylish and effortless look.

Business Outfit

For a more formal look, pair your 1-2 fade haircut with a tailored suit or a blazer paired with dress pants, a dress shirt, and brown leather dress shoes. Make sure your suit fits well and has a classic cut for a sharp and professional look.

Formal Outfit

For a black-tie event, pair your 1-2 fade haircut with a tuxedo. Wear a black tailored tuxedo featuring a notch lapel or shawl collar, paired with a white dress shirt, black bow tie, black patent leather dress shoes, and a black silk lapel flower.

Remember, your outfit should match your personality and the occasion you are attending. Play with patterns, textures, and colors to make sure you stand out!


The 1-2 fade haircut is a versatile and popular style that has been around since the 1930s. It was made popular by the military and is a simple yet stylish cut that is perfect for any occasion.

With different fade styles and hair prep options, anyone can rock this cut regardless of their hair texture. This cut is easy to maintain and can make the face appear more defined.

Overall, the 1-2 fade is a classic and timeless haircut that will never go out of style.


Jonathan B. Delfs

I love to write about men's lifestyle and fashion. Unique tips and inspiration for daily outfits and other occasions are what we like to give you at MensVenture.com. Do you have any notes or feedback, please write to me directly: [email protected]

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