In the world of haircuts, fade and taper are two trendy styles that have become increasingly popular in recent times. However, when it comes to choosing between a “drop fade vs taper,” many people find it difficult to decide which style suits their hair type and face shape best.
In this article, we aim to help you understand the difference between drop fade and taper and provide guidance on which one to pick for a modern and stylish look.
Are you struggling to decide between a drop fade and a taper for your next haircut? Check out this Youtube video that breaks down the difference between the two styles.
Don’t settle for a subpar haircut – educate yourself on the nuances of the drop fade vs taper debate with this informative and visual video.
What Is a Drop Fade?
A drop fade is a type of haircut that gradually lowers at the back of the head and around the front hairline, creating more depth around the crown and a sharp outline to the face. It is similar to a regular fade haircut, but with a distinguishing feature that lowers at the back and front hairline.
Characteristics of a Drop Fade
Drop fades can vary in length, with the hair being cut shorter at the nape of the neck, and gradually increasing in length towards the top of the head. The transition between the shorter and longer lengths of hair is typically gradual, creating a natural looking effect.
This transition can be minimal or pronounced, depending on personal preference.
Different Types of Drop Fade
There are three types of drop fades: low, medium, and high. The difference between these types depends on how high up the head the fade goes.
Low Drop Fade
A low drop fade usually starts at the lower end of the hairline, just above the ear, and gradually decreases to the nape of the neck. This type of fade is subtle and less dramatic compared to the other types.
Medium Drop Fade
A medium drop fade starts at the middle portion of the hairline and decreases gradually towards the nape of the neck. This type of fade is noticeable and gives more definition to the hair shape.
High Drop Fade
A high drop fade starts at the highest point of the hairline and gradually decreases towards the nape of the neck. This type of fade is the most dramatic of the three and can give your hair a bold and edgy look.
What Is a Taper?
A taper is a haircut that gradually changes the length of the hair from the top of the head down to the nape of the neck and the sides of the head. The hair is longer at the top and gradually gets shorter as it goes down, ending at the natural hairline.
Tapers are known for their natural and conservative look.
There are different types of taper, and these are:
- Low Taper – hair is cut relatively close to the natural hairline
- High Taper – hair is cut higher on the head and lower towards the natural hairline
- Tapered Neckline – the hairline is tapered around the neck, giving it an even and neat look
- Skin Taper – hair is cut extremely short or shaved to the skin, giving off a bold and edgy look.
Images of different types of tapers can give a visual understanding of the different types of taper haircuts.
Drop Fade Vs Taper: What’s The Difference?
If you’re looking to change up your hairstyle, then a fade or a taper could be the perfect option for you. Although both styles involve taking hair from long to short, there are key differences between the two that are worth considering before making a decision.
The main difference between a drop fade and a taper is the length of the hair. With a taper, the length gradually decreases from the top of the head to the natural hairline on the neck and sides of the head.
However, a fade can be much shorter and more dramatic, often disappearing before it reaches the natural hairline.
Level of Sheerness
Another difference between drop fades and tapers is the level of sheerness. Drop fades are known for having a more dramatic contrast, with a sharp line that fades into the skin.
In contrast, tapers tend to have a more gradual fade, making for a more subtle look.
Placement of the Fade or Taper
The placement of the fade or taper is also a key difference. With a taper, the hair on top of the head is typically longer, with a gradual decrease in length towards the bottom.
With a drop fade, however, the fade starts around the front hairline, allowing for more depth around the crown of the head.
Both drop fades and tapers offer a lot of styling options. However, because drop fades are often shorter, they may be more limited in terms of how they can be styled.
Tapers, on the other hand, can be more versatile due to the longer hair on top.
How To Choose Between Drop Fade and Taper?
If you’re trying to decide between a drop fade and a taper haircut, it is important to consider several factors that can help you determine which style is best for you. Your hair type, face shape, lifestyle, profession, and personal style preferences are all important considerations to keep in mind when choosing between the two styles.
One of the most important factors to consider when choosing between a drop fade and a taper is your hair type. If you have thick, curly hair, a taper may be a better option for you because it allows you to keep more length on top while still achieving a sleek, groomed look.
On the other hand, if you have straight or fine hair, a drop fade can help add texture and dimension to your style, giving you a more edgy, modern look.
Your face shape can also be a determining factor when choosing between a drop fade and a taper. For instance, if you have a round face, a drop fade can help add definition and make your face appear longer and slimmer.
However, if you have a square face, a taper may be a better option for you because it can soften your facial features and help balance out your proportions.
Lifestyle and Profession
Your lifestyle and profession can also influence your decision between a drop fade and a taper. If you have an active lifestyle or work in a profession that requires you to be physically active, a shorter, low-maintenance drop fade may be a better option for you.
On the other hand, if you work in a more conservative profession, a longer, more traditional taper may be a better fit.
Personal Style Preferences
Ultimately, the decision between a drop fade and a taper comes down to personal style preferences. If you prefer a more contemporary, trendy look, a drop fade may be the better choice.
If you prefer a classic, traditional style, a taper may be more your speed.
By considering your hair type, face shape, lifestyle, profession, and personal style preferences, you can make an informed decision between a drop fade and a taper that best suits your needs and preferences.
Examples Of Drop Fade And Taper Haircuts
If you’re thinking about changing up your hairstyle, it can be hard to know which look is right for you. To help you out, we’ve compiled some popular and trendy drop fade and taper haircuts that you can consider for your next grooming session.
1. Low Drop Fade + Textured Top
A low drop fade is a great option for those who want a sharp, clean look. This haircut features a gradual fade that starts near the temples and curves around to the nape of the neck.
The top is left longer and styled with texture to create a messy, textured look that is easy to maintain.
2. High Taper Fade + Comb Over
A high taper fade is a classic cut that looks great on any guy. It features a gradual transition from longer hair on top to shorter sides and back.
The comb over adds a touch of sophistication and gives you the option to style your hair in a variety of ways.
3. Drop Skin Fade + Long Fringe
A drop skin fade is a bold look that is perfect for guys who want to stand out. This cut features a high contrast between the longer hair on top and a shaved side and back.
The long fringe can be styled in many different ways, including slicked back, swept to the side, or even messy and undone.
4. Mid Taper Fade + Quiff
A mid taper fade is a happy medium between a high tapered fade and a low drop fade. It features a more gradual transition from longer hair on top to shorter sides and back.
The quiff adds volume and texture to the hair, making it a great option for those with thick, wavy hair.
5. Drop Fade + Buzz Cut
A drop fade is a dramatic cut that looks great with a buzz cut. This cut features a gradual taper that starts at the temples and curves around to the nape of the neck.
The buzz cut is an easy-to-maintain style that looks great with a variety of cuts and is perfect for guys with thinning hair.
6. Low Taper Fade + Side Part
A low taper fade is a great option for those who want a classic, timeless look. This cut features a gradual transition from longer hair on top to shorter sides and back.
The side part adds a touch of sophistication and gives you the option to style your hair in a variety of ways.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which haircut is better for curly hair?
Can I achieve a drop fade or taper on long hair?
How regularly do I need to maintain either style?
How long does it take to grow out a drop fade or taper?
The decision between a drop fade and a taper ultimately comes down to personal preference and the style that fits best with an individual’s features and interests. Both styles provide a unique look and approach to haircuts.
If someone desires a more dramatic, abrupt, and super short cut, then a drop fade might be the way to go as it adds depth around the crown and sharp outlines to the face. If someone prefers a more conservative and natural look, then a taper might be the better option as it gradually changes hair length while still reducing the thickness towards one end.
Ultimately, consulting with a trusted and experienced stylist can also be helpful in making the best decision for one’s needs and preferences.