Classic Hairstyles for Men: The Side Part Style

Last updated on October 7th, 2018 at 10:21 pm

A Guide on the Side Part: A Men’s Hairstyle That Will Never Let You Down

While I am not a fan of the classic hairstyles for men, I do have to say that they really are suitable hairstyles for just about any man. Among all the classic hair styles for us guys, the side part is, without a doubt, the most popular men’s hairstyle. And it’s for a reason.

A classic side part hairstyle for men

You can pretty much side part any kind of men’s haircut. From a neat taper haircut in the likes of a businessman haircut to the hip and clean Ivy League haircut; you just can go wrong with parting your hair. Because a side part encompasses the styling of the hair to the left or to the right (in a perpendicular fashion to the parted line), this particular hairstyle acts as the parent hairstyle for derivative styles such as the side fringe, messy top, quiff and even the slicked back hairstyle. Thus, it’s in your benefit to be able to give yourself an epically-parted style.

Tips for the side part hairstyle

The main things to take into account when wanting to get a side part hairstyle are the length of the hair and the hair products to use.

With regards to the styling of the side part, it’s actually very intuitive and most men were taught how to part their hair when they were kids. Simply visualize going from either of the sides of the forehead (i.e. temple) right till the back of the top of the head. The line should be as straight as possible, and you can choose whichever temple you want for our side part. Do bear in mind, however, that, in some countries (most notably Spanish-speaking countries), parting your hair to the left (i.e. the line at the right temple) is a sign of being gay and being interested in meeting up with someone. Not that there is anything wrong with this, but just beware of your side parting if you happen to go to Colombia or any other Spanish-speaking contry!

Length of the hair

A side part should be performed at a hair length ranging from short to medium length. While a side part can still be achieved on long hair, I suggest that you opt for a middle part or slick back for your lengthy tresses instead of the side parting as the latter can be a bit annoying to keep still and secured.

A side swept hairstyle by a male with pomade

A classic side part also works best on tapered sides and back. Simply ask your barber or hairdresser for a taper haircut, and tell him whether you want a shears-only haircut or clipper-over-shears cut. Don’t ask for a clipper taper only as then you’d move on to a fade haircut, and a side part tends to not look very good with a fade.

As for the hair on the top of your head, it’s short hair that yields the best results as the longer the hair is, the messier it gets and the less formal it gets. The only exception to this is if you’re going to wear your side part laying low on the scalp. Such as style can be achieved with a strong-hold pomade (see the next point) and will look classic and formal at any length withing the short to medium length range.

Hair products for the side part

The great thing about a side part is that you’re free to use pretty much any hair product you like. However, the best hair products to use for a side part are a hair pomade, a styling wax, hair mousse and hair gel. Another great thing of the side part is that the same hair products that you use to style it can be used for just about any other men’s hairstyle. So by buying hair products for your side part, you’re also getting a great bang for your buck as you can use those products for many more male hairstyles.

For a classic look with the hair parted flat, go with a pomade. The pomade must have a strong hold and you’re better off choosing a water-based pomade instead of an oil-based pomade as the latter can easily create a big greasy chaos on your hair. Water-based pomades work great for classic hairstyles for men, including the slicked back hair style.

For a more modern look, go with either a styling wax or with hair gel. A modern side part has the hair parted with some volume (as much as you want), which is achieved by parting your hair with your fingers and by using a hair dryer. To use the hair dryer, simply point it to your hair and blow warm air to the hair as you style your side part with your fingers.

  • For a neat styling wax to shape and style your side part, go with this styling wax.
  • For a hair gel that will secure your parted hair and keep it shaped, go with this hair gel here.
  • For a great hair dryer that will not cause frizz and enhance your side part (or any other hairstyle), go with this hair dryer here.

For men with curly hair, a hair mousse is the best hair product for your curly side part. It goes without saying that you must style your curls with your fingers only and not with a regular comb. You can, however, use a wide-tooth comb to lay your curls on your scalp so that they are ready to be parted to the side with your fingers.

  • When it comes to hair mousse for your curly hair, grab this hair mousse for great parting results.
  • For a high-quality wide-tooth comb, go with this wide-tooth comb as it will last you years.

Conclusion to side parting your mane

The side part is the quintessential men’s hairstyle. It has been used for decades and it even was at its popularity Everest in the 1930s and 1940s. Back then, only really oily pomades existed, so men could only part their hair with low-laying flat hairstyles (and thus why such a hairstyle is deemed a classic hairstyle).

Nowadays, the range of hair products that you have available is huge, so you can pretty much customize your side part as you wish. Likewise, these days we have plenty of skilled barbers and hairdressers in every medium-sized city, so you certainly can be picky when choosing a skilled barber or hairdresser to cut you a great haircut for your side part hairstyle. Not to mention that you are reading this blog of mine, which is against the generic BS that abounds in the men’s hair field and that you also have available my bestselling book on men’s hair, The Men’s Hair Book, which is a 260-plus-pages book covering absolutely all you need to have awesome hair, be it classic or modern or whatever.

All the best, gentlemen.


For your male grooming needs, visit the Barbershop Forums, the mens style and fashion community with some epic male grooming stuff thrown in!

2 comments for “Classic Hairstyles for Men: The Side Part Style

  1. Ryan Smith
    October 14, 2014 at 11:57 pm

    Hey Rogelio, firstly thanks for your blog I enjoy reading it. Gonna try the no shampoo method and try figure out exactly how much I need to shampoo my hair. Been doing it for a while 1 on 1 off.

    I wanted to ask if you could write a review on Alpecin and other caffeine shampoos. I was previously using Rogaine and was getting some results but found that by changing to Aplecin got more results within 2 months of using it.

    Also in regards to the no shampooing method. I struggle already on my second day with a itchy scalp and I find that my scalp drys out incredibly for some reason? I am unaware of what’s causing this and it’s been happening the last year and a bit, it’s the original reason why I started shampooing less cause I assumed that perhaps it was because I was cleaning my hair to often. Any suggestions?

    • October 15, 2014 at 3:00 pm

      Hi there Ryan,

      Yes, I have been meaning to review a caffeine shampoo at some point. Like I’ve pointed out in the past here at Men’s Hair Blog and also in my book The Men’s Hair Book, caffeine shampoos have some potential to help with hair loss. The process is quite interesting if you’re into biology and I for one welcome anything that has potential to help our fellow balding men. Of course, anything that isn’t a scam or snake oil.

      About your scalp itching, I take it from your comment that this was an issue that was already occurring prior to jumping on the No Shampoo method. If the itching was/is constant, you may have dandruff or a more severe case known as seborrhoeic dermatitis. Nothing to worry about and it is easily treated, but you would be best to schedule a visit to a good dermatologist to get a solid diagnosis.

      Have you been using the caffeine shampoo all along since your itching started? Both Rogaine and caffeine shampoos are known to cause skin irritation (and thus itching). You could try switching to another shampoo; one that I would recommend is this ketoconazole shampoo as it is great to fight any dandruff and it also helps with hair loss by killing the dandruff-causing fungus and thus reducing scalp inflammation. It’s scalp inflammation that’s believed to partly cause male pattern baldness, so, if you are trying to fight hair loss, that ketoconazole shampoo will kill to birds with one stone. I would still visit a dermatologist just to be sure, though.

      Feel free to update me on how that goes, buddy!


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