Ivy League Haircut & How to Style It

Last updated on April 21st, 2013 at 10:30 pm

Ivy League Haircut & How to Style It

The Ivy League haircut is a classy short style for your hair that yields an elegant, discreet look. The Ivy League haircut can also go by the name Princeton or Harvard clip, and it is a step up in length from the Crew Cut haircut. The Ivy League haircut can be styled in a myriad of ways and can also be regarded as a hairstyle when chosen as a long-term haircutĀ  and due to the conservative and short, neat tapered shape that the Ivy League haircut offers.

Matt Damon with an Ivy League haircut for a side part hair style

Matt Damon with an Ivy League haircut parted to the side

Hair length category


Suitable hair type

Straight hair, wavy hair, coiled hair

The Ivy League haircut

Just like with a Crew Cut, the Ivy League haircut has the top of the head tapered in length, with the front of the top carrying the longer length. The length at the top is always a short length (i.e. less than 2 inches) that can then be styled; typically, an Ivy League haircut will have the crown at 0.5-1 inch in length while the front is longer and up to 1.5 inches in length (hence the top is tapered by up to 1 inch depending on what you choose for the front and crown). When going to the barber, if you want to get Ivy League haircut, you should ensure to denote what length you want at the top (front and back) so that a good taper can be done.

The hair on the back and the sides of an Ivy League haircut is tapered to different lengths of your choice, either to a clipped length (#1-#4) or scissor trimmed. Likewise, the line of junction between the sides/back and the top must be evened out with scissors so that there are no sharp edges.

Haircut difficulty

3 out of 5

How to style an Ivy League haircut

To style an Ivy League haircut, you would part the hair to the side, with the parted line starting at either temple. Instead of flattening the parted hair, however, there is some volume left, which means that it is best to style the Ivy League with your fingers rather than with a comb, although you can use the comb to give the initial directions to the hair. A small fringe can also be left hovering the forehead when side parting the hair.

Because of the conservative nature of an Ivy League haircut, the hair is not usually spiked or brushed up; rather, side parting is preferred. Having said that, since the Ivy League is more of a haircut and thus open to interpretation when styling it, you can choose to brush the hair up for its styling, although due to the nature of the top’s taper, it not always looks good.

Pomade, hair gel and hair mousse work great for to style the Ivy League haircut as these products enhance the volume acquired through finger-combing.

Styling difficulty

2 out of 5

Which male celebrity wears an Ivy League haircut?

Real Madrid soccer player Xabi Alonso is known for sporting an Ivy League haircut which he parts to the right side with some gel.

The Ivy League haircut of Xavi Alonso with a side part

Xabi Alonso with an Ivy League haircut parted to the side

Men’s hair products for an Ivy League haircut

The Ivy League haircut is a great style option if you ant to sport a neat short look that still gives you some length on the top to get a bit creative with. It goes without saying that if you want to enter one of the Ivy League universities, you should certainly be considering getting the Ivy League haircut to get the whole look!

Image credit: Mod Mike

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