45 Trendy High and Tight Haircuts for Men

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High and Tight Haircuts – The high and tight is a classic barbershop cut that’s a variant of the buzz cut. For decades, it’s been widely seen on the heads of men in the military, and it’s also found its way into civilian life. It’s one of the shortest men’s hairstyles available that still retains a distinct characteristic and isn’t a flat out buzz cut.

One of the biggest benefits of the high and tight is its ease. If you have a good set of hair clippers, you can easily give yourself this haircut.


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What is High and Tight Haircuts?

The high and tight is a military variant of the crew cut. It is a very short hairstyle most commonly worn by men in the armed forces of the United States.[1] It is also popular with law enforcement officers and other public safety personnel. Although “high and tight” is a term commonly used within the military and law enforcement communities, the same haircut is sometimes referred to by civilians as a “Walker”, meaning that the back and sides are shaved to the skin and the top is blended or faded into slightly longer hair – Wikipedia.

The High & Tight History

Like so many things in fashion – chinos, peacoats, bomber jackets – the high and tight haircut has its roots planted firmly in the military. Favoured for its no-fuss nature and the fact that the patch of hair on top could safely accommodate a combat helmet while maintaining a shaven look at the sides, the high and tight became one of the accepted military regulation cuts shortly after the Second World War.

The style went on to become a military requirement during the Vietnam War, to make grooming and cleaning easier in the field. Along with a ‘no beards’ rule, it also ensured a better fit for soldiers when using protective equipment such as gas masks.

Types of High and Tight Haircuts

What is surprising, though, is the many variations that now exist of this classic haircut. So, if you’re looking for a sharp new look, you can be sure there’s an option to suit your style, and we can help you find it. Here, we’ve rounded up the best high and tight haircuts for men

1. Classic High and Tight

The classic high and tight is a minimal yet striking hairstyle. It features skin-shaved sides and back with a slightly longer length on top. As an undercut hairstyle, the look is contrasting and bold. However, due to its short strands, the style remains subtle and smart. This classic cut is often worn by members of the military, who are called “jarheads” due to the cut’s lid-like appearance on top.

2. High and Tight Fade

For a softer take on the high and tight, you can opt for a more gradual fade on the sides. To nail the look, ask your barber for a high fade with a short length on top. The result will be a masculine appearance that’s perfect for every occasion.

3. Short High and Tight

The high and tight can be surprisingly versatile and offers an option to suit every gent’s taste. If you’re the kind of gent who likes an ultra-short length, then the short high and tight may be for you. The style, which features cleanly shaven sides with a seriously short length on top is minimal without looking plain. It’s also practical and requires relatively no styling. However, you will need to organise regular trims to maintain its cropped length.

4. Long High and Tight

For a more modern take on the high and tight, you can ask your barber for a slightly longer length on top. However, be sure to keep the cut relatively short otherwise your high and tight will turn into a disconnected undercut.

5. Straight High and Tight

One of the great things about the high and tight hairstyle is that it can work for all hair types. However, it appears particularly polished and sharp on those with naturally straight strands. So, if your locks are free from curls, waves, and kinks, you should consider giving this cut a go.

6. Messy High and Tight

The high and tight is a military hairstyle. So, while it’s a sharp and clean look, it can also appear conservative and somewhat harsh. To combat this issue, you can consider rocking a messy high and tight. By just leaving your top hairs dishevelled, you’ll instantly add a more relaxed and laidback aesthetic to your overall appearance.

7. High and Tight Buzz Cut

Standard buzz cuts are practical and masculine. However, they can also be a little plain for fashion-forward gents. As such, a high and tight buzz cut can make a fantastic alternative. Thanks to its fade, this cropped cut is more visually exciting than your usual single-length buzz.

8. High and Tight Afro

If you have afro-textured hair, a high and tight haircut can make an excellent option. With just enough length to show off your natural texture on top and practical short sides, this hairstyle is sleek, stylish, and easily manageable.

9. Forward-Swept High and Tight

When opting for a high and tight hairstyle, you need to decide how you want to wear the hair on top of your head. For a simple and easy option, you can create a forward-swept look. To do so, just comb damp hair forward after washing. Then, either allow to air dry or, if your hair is unruly, blow-dry forward and secure with some product.

10. Blonde High and Tight

When transitioning to a new hairstyle, it’s important to consider the colour of your locks. For instance, a light high and tight will appear subtler than a dark high and tight. So, if you have blonde hair, you may need to opt for more contrast in length to achieve the same impact as someone with brown or black hair.

11. High and Tight Drop Fade

Another excellent variation of the traditional high and tight is to combine it with a drop fade. The cut features a fade that starts high before tapering off behind the ears. As such, from the front, this cut appears like a standard high and tight. But, from the back, it looks like a single-length cut.

12. High and Tight Comb-Over

If you’re looking for a high and tight that appears dapper and office-appropriate, a comb-over version makes an excellent choice. To create the look, just ensure you have enough length on top. Then, make a deep side part and use some product to hold your look in place.

13. High and Tight Pompadour

For a fresh take on the on-trend pompadour, you should consider combining the look with a high and tight haircut. Thanks to the shaved sides of this cut, even a mini pompadour created with short strands can look striking and stylish.

14. High and Tight Quiff

Like a pompadour, a quiff can also work with a high and tight haircut. However, you may need to practice your styling techniques to get the look to stay put. In particular, blow-drying your hair up and back before styling with a comb and pomade can help you secure this style with short strands.

15. High and Tight for Thin Hair

Men with thinning hair can also rock a stylish high and tight hairstyle. Thanks to its minimal length, this cut doesn’t require thick strands to look good. As such, it makes an excellent option for those with hair that is naturally fine or that are experiencing hair loss.

16. High and Tight Curls

When combined with thick curls, a military haircut can appear modern and fresh. Thanks to the added texture and volume up high, there’s an interesting distinction between the hair on the top of the head and the buzzed sides.

17. High and Tight Caesar Cut

When partnered with a high fade, a Caesar cut instantly becomes more contemporary and stylish. To nail the look, just ask your barber for a fade with a short length on top. The top should then be styled forward and cut into a short, horizontal fringe.

18. High and Tight with Hard Part

Don’t worry if a cropped cut with a high fade isn’t quite as unique as you would like. By adding a hard part to your cut, you can quickly add interest and excitement to your sharp style. Additionally, the shaved line will give the illusion of a smart side part even if your hair isn’t long enough to create one.

19. High and Tight with Beard

If you want to amplify the masculinity of your high and tight haircut, you can consider partnering it with a beard. Not only will the beard complement your manly cut, but it’ll also balance out your hair’s minimal proportions.

20. Two-Tone High and Tight

The high and tight may be minimal, but it is far from boring, especially when you opt for a two-toned version. Featuring different colours on the top and sides, the two-tone high and tight dials up the contrast for an eye-catching and unforgettable appearance.

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