Hairstyles for skinny men

Updated February 21, 2017

The long and lean silhouette of a skinny man needs a balancing haircut. Those lanky men with curly or wavy hair have an advantage on men with straight hair, as their haircuts do not require as much styling to achieve a style that is complementary to their body shape.

Face Shape

A factor that a man has to take into account with his hairstyle is his face shape. Often, someone with a long and thin body also has a long and thin face, which is called oblong. He can then use fringes, layers and longer hairstyles to cover up and distract from the length. A square face, such as the kind skinny actor Orlando Bloom has, does not need hair over the face but could still benefit from shape around the face in certain areas.


The general shape of a skinny man is straight up and down. It is this shape that a good hairstyle attempts to balance. A cut with a lot of tall layers on the top or a vertical spiked look will make the face, and therefore the body, appear taller and longer. However, a short back and sides cut like the styles of Jeff Goldblum or Topher Grace work if the hair at the top of the head is long enough and jagged enough to hold a ruffled look. You can also gel this type of cut off to the side to retain the length but reduce the height. Shaving all your hair off or getting a buzzcut generally have the opposite effect and make you look lankier. A shorter, skinnier man may be able to get away with a faux-hawk -- long hair on the top of the head styled with gel into a short Mohawk -- if he has a square face and thick or wavy hair.


A skinny man with a long face can counter the long drink of water effect with a medium cut of three inches, which is about 75mm or more. Wavy and curly hair is most suitable for these types of cuts, although straight, thick hair can also suit the style if you add a fringe that sweeps over the face from one side and covers some of the oblong forehead. This makes the face appear shorter. Orlando Bloom has curly hair and regularly wears his hair below his ears and back from his square face.


Lanky men like Russell Brand de-emphasize a long face with a thick mane of wavy or curly hair down to the shoulders. Layers help keep the hair bouncy and voluminous. This style is not suitable for a man with straight hair, as the length and direction of the hair emphasizes the thin length of the body, especially with a center parting.

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About the Author

Jillian O'Keeffe has been a freelance writer since 2009. Her work appears in regional Irish newspapers including "The Connacht Tribune" and the "Sentinel." O'Keeffe has a Master of Arts in journalism from the National University of Ireland, Galway and a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from University College Cork.