Photo by mostafa meraji on Unsplash

Number 3 Fade: Elevating Your Style Game

October 14, 2023
4 mins read

Key Takeaways:

  1. Versatility of Number 3 Fades: Number 3 fades offer remarkable versatility, making them suitable for various occasions, whether casual outings or professional settings.
  2. Understanding the Number 3 Fade: A number 3 fade refers to trimming the sides and back of the hair using a clipper guard with the number 3 setting, creating a seamless blend with the top hair.
  3. Nine Stylish Number 3 Fade Styles: Explore a range of number 3 fade styles, including the Taper Fade with Curly Top, Side Part with Mid Fade, Wavy Mullet with Burst Fade, Messy Curls with High Number 3 Fade, Front Fringes with Mid Fade, Slick Back with High Fade, Mohawk with Shadow Fade, Man Bun with Disconnected Undercut, and Box Braids with Taper Fade.
  4. Choosing the Right Style: Select a number 3 fade style that complements your face shape, hair type, and personality to enhance your overall appearance.
  5. How to Ask for a Number 3 Fade: Requesting this hairstyle at the barber is straightforward. Ask for your desired hairstyle, then specify that you want the sides and back to be cut with a number 3 clipper guard.
  6. Pairing with Professionalism: Contrary to the misconception that faded hairstyles are unprofessional, number 3 fades can be suitable for corporate jobs when combined with styles like the slick back or side-part combover.

In a world of ever-evolving fashion trends, some styles manage to stand the test of time. Among these enduring trends, faded hairstyles have carved out a permanent niche and show no signs of fading away. The number 3 fade, in particular, has gained popularity as a versatile and stylish choice for men seeking a fresh and distinctive look. This article is your comprehensive guide to the number 3 fade haircut, exploring what it is, its diverse styles, and answers to common questions.

What is a Number 3 Fade?

The number 3 fade is a haircut technique that involves trimming the hair on the sides and back using a clipper guard with the number 3 setting. This corresponds to a length of 3/8 inch or 10 millimeters. The key to the number 3 fade is the seamless blending of this shorter length with the top hair, creating a harmonious and stylish look.

This style derives its name from the use of the number 3 guard, and it offers incredible versatility. Whether you’re stepping into a professional setting or enjoying a casual outing with friends and family, the number 3 fade can adapt to any occasion with ease.

Nine Number 3 Fade Styles to Consider

The number 3 fade provides the canvas for a variety of captivating hairstyles. Here are nine distinctive styles to consider, each offering a unique twist on this classic fade:

1. Taper Fade with Curly Top: This style is ideal for those with curly hair. Keep the front hair longer and embrace messy curls while giving the sides and back a number 3 taper fade. It’s not for formal settings but perfect for making a bold statement.

2. Side Part with Mid Fade: For a fresh and polished look, opt for a mid fade on the sides and back, leaving the front hair longer for a stylish side part. It’s versatile enough to transition from casual to professional with ease.

3. Wavy Mullet with Burst Fade: Embrace the resurgence of mullets with a burst fade on the temples and behind the ears. Leave the front and back hair longer to achieve this edgy wavy mullet. Note that it’s not suitable for formal occasions.

4. Messy Curls with High Number 3 Fade: Men with curly hair can flaunt their natural curls while sporting a high number 3 fade on the sides and back. This style is confidence-boosting, especially for those with slight receding hairlines.

5. Front Fringes with Mid Fade: Create an eye-catching look by styling the front hair into long fringes that extend past the eyebrows. Pair this with a mid fade on the sides and back, and you have a distinctive yet potentially professional cut with some hair pomade magic.

6. Slick Back with High Fade: This style is a go-to for professional settings. Achieve a high fade on the sides and back with a number 3 clipper guard, then use hair pomade to slick back the longer front hair. Note that this style works best with straight or wavy hair.

7. Mohawk with Shadow Fade: For an edgy and bold choice, consider a mohawk with a shadow fade. The sides sport the fade, while the front and back are spiked with hair pomade to create the classic mohawk look.

8. Man Bun with Disconnected Undercut: Long hair enthusiasts can opt for a man bun with an undercut. The sides and back feature a disconnected undercut with the number 3 guard, while the longer front hair is gathered into a top bun. It suits straight and wavy hair types.

9. Box Braids with Taper Fade: Men with kinky hair can embrace box braids with a taper fade. Trim the sides and back with a number 3 guard, and then weave the front hair into box braids using extensions. This protective style is ideal for all hair types but may not be considered professional.


Let’s address some frequently asked questions about number 3 fade haircuts:

Q: How do I ask for a number 3 fade hairstyle at the barbershop?

A: Requesting a number 3 fade is straightforward. Simply ask your stylist for the desired hairstyle, and then specify that you’d like the sides and back to be cut with a number 3 clipper guard. They’ll understand and deliver the look you want.

Q: Which hairstyle pairs best with a number 3 fade?

A: The beauty of the number 3 fade lies in its versatility, making it suitable for various hairstyles. However, the slick back style is often considered an excellent choice for a professional look when combined with this fade.

Q: Are number 3 fade hairstyles considered unprofessional?

A: Contrary to the belief that faded hairstyles are unprofessional, they can be suitable for corporate jobs. Pairing a number 3 fade with a slick back or side-part combover can create a professional and polished look.

Final Thoughts

Number 3 fade hairstyles offer an array of striking and appealing options for men looking to stand out with their distinctive look. Whether you’re seeking a professional hairstyle for your corporate job or a bold statement for casual occasions, there’s a number 3 fade style for everyone.

The key to rocking these styles is to choose one that complements your face shape, hair type, and personality. Remember that the right hairstyle can significantly enhance your appearance, so embrace the versatility of the number 3 fade and make it your own.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recent Comments

Photo by Luwadlin Bosman on Unsplash

About Levi Keswick

LeviKeswick serves as a vibrant hub for diverse individuals to share their stories, absorb and contribute to emerging fashion trends, lifestyle concepts, and innovative ideas. We offer valuable insights and advice, amalgamating information painstakingly curated by experts in the field, alongside fashion connoisseurs and influential social media personalities.