Less a cousin to the mohawk and more like its stylish offspring, the faux hawk (occasionally known as fohawk) is a contemporary men’s haircut ably distanced from its own lineage. Indeed, while a good mohawk might represent the punk spirit in hair form, the faux hawk is far more practical, professional, and versatile by comparison. Of course, this all begs the question: what exactly is a faux hawk haircut?
The short answer is that the modern faux hawk is a men’s hairstyle or haircut with a longer strip at the top and an undercut, fade, taper, or shorter-length cut around the sides. And if that sounds pretty much like a mohawk, it’s not, as the faux hawk bears a stronger connection to the modern quiff or pompadour than it does any punk (or Native American) aesthetic of yore.
Not only does that mean the men’s faux hawk is broadly acceptable and terrifically manageable, but it’s also the perfect way to tout some individual style without going full electrocuted porcupine. Just ask David Beckham, who helped popularise the faux hawk haircut by rocking one himself. Should you be ready to walk a similar path, consider the following faux hawk hairstyle tips and haircuts.
This article is part of our Trimmed & Terrific Series.
What is a Faux Hawk Haircut?
Pair a strip of upward-facing hair at the top with shorter sides and you’re probably looking at a men’s faux hawk haircut. Wait a second! You might exclaim. Isn’t that a pompadour or quiff? Yes and no. Pompadours tend to be a little longer and quiffs a little flatter. That said, there is such a thing as both a pompadour faux hawk and quiff faux hawk so it can get a little confusing.
Generally speaking, a great men’s faux hawk makes deft use of contrast, blending, and texture. The contrast comes by way of longer hair on top and shorter hair around the sides. The texture can be achieved through a variety of means and can vary depending on hair type and faux hawk style. Blending or layering, meanwhile, relates to how much distinction you want between the faux hawk haircut and the adjoining fade or side cut.
Some men like a truly uniform appearance, meaning just a little more hair on top than on the surrounding sides. Other gents prefer stark contrast and go for a buzzed undercut or a faux hawk with fade, perhaps drawing more closely upon the spirit of the original mohawk. That’s truer now than ever before, as more and more men employ a classic faux hawk fade or undercut.
How to Style a Faux Hawk
If your ready to explore the faux hawk in all its glory, our first bit of advice would be to pursue a style that goes best with the physical structure of your face. Also, if this marks new territory for you and your hair, then you might consider leaving most of the initial legwork in the hands of your barber. That same barber or hairdresser will not just help you discover your personal faux hawk hairstyle, but also give you proper guidance in terms of maintaining the aesthetic at home.
If you’d rather save yourself a trip to the barber and go your own way, here are some general pointers:
- Use hair product like pomade to sustain texture and appearance.
- Add the product when your hair is almost but not completely dry after rinsing/washing.
- For the most part, you should rely on your fingers to shape and sculpt the faux hawk.
- To enhance volume, blow-dry the hair toward the back along the centre while massaging in some more product with your fingers.
- When you have the look you’re going for, apply hairspray or another holding product to keep the style fixed in place.
10 Faux Hawk Haircuts and Hairstyles for Men
As you can probably imagine, not all faux hawks are created equal. To be clear, we’re not saying that some faux hawk haircuts are better than others, just that your face shape might work best with a specific faux hawk type or style. The good news is that you have plenty of room to experiment using the style pointers listed above. From super-short faux hawks to taper fades to long and spiky tops, consider the following 10 faux hawk haircuts before picking up the product or heading into the barbershop.
1. Layered Short Hair Faux Hawk
If you’d rather stay on the safe side of bold style, a short faux hawk with ample layering is one way to do it. This haircut doesn’t scream “anarchy” as much as it does “sharpness.” Keep the side hair just a tad shorter than the hair on top to lend everything a uniform appearance, using a little product for styling. The end result is a look that’s outwardly precise and just a tad messy.
2. Deep Part Faux Hawk
Most traditional deep parts highlight the part on one side only. The faux hawk takes that a step further by employing a hard part on both sides, thereby giving the top hair a little effortless prominence. Surround that with a nice fade and you’re riding high on all sorts of distinction.
3. Long Hair Faux Hawk
Long hair faux hawk almost sounds one step short of a full-blown mohawk, but that’s not generally the case. Instead, a long hair faux hawk relies on playing with volume and texture to create a fuller appearance. Swirl it out or slick it back or point it up. The choice is yours.
4. Curly Faux Hawk
A beautiful thing about men’s faux hawks is that they don’t discriminate against hair type. In other words, men with curly hair can rock a nice faux hawk just like anyone else. Keep those curls close to the scalp or go full-on 80s synth-pop artist. Again, it’s all about personal preference.
5. High Top Spiked Faux Hawk
Tell a friend you have a “spiked” faux hawk and they’ll probably picture individual spikes pointing upright from your crown, but those presumptions aren’t really accurate. Like the long hair faux hawk, this one is more about volume and texture, positioning full hair outward but not necessarily turning one’s head into an impaling mechanism.
6. Buzz Cut Faux Hawk
For hair that’s manageable, stylish and just a little outside the box, check out the buzz cut faux hawk. It’s the perfect entry point for short faux hawks in general because it bears resemblance to plenty of other hairstyles and keeps the length short all around. Sometimes less is more and this is one of those times.
7. Classic Faux Hawk
Long and full on top and short around the sides, the classic faux hawk shares a space with the modern quiff and pompadour as a style that’s approachable, singular and sharp all at once. If David Beckham can rock one, surely you can too.
8. Taper Fade Faux Hawk
Tight in appearance and overflowing with clean vibes, the taper fade faux hawk remains a striking way to couple that short haircut with the natural contours of your scalp and face. The result is a sharp look that’s truly yours and yours alone.
9. Rat Tail Faux Hawk
It might not look anything like a mohawk, but the rat tail faux hawk will draw just as much controversy. And while we don’t personally endorse this men’s hairstyle, we’re certainly not stopping you from being you. Sooo…yeah. Go for it.
10. Action in the Front Faux Hawk
A general outlay of spikes or forward-facing follicles dominates the front hairline, while the sides tout a sleek fade or undercut. This is a true 21st-century style.
This article is part of our Trimmed & Terrific Series.