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Here's What You Can Do to Fight a Receding Hairline and Minimize Hair Loss

You could treat a receding hairline with drugs—but why not rock the look with a particular haircut?

"I’m starting to lose my hair—it’s receding a little, and I’m getting a bald spot on top. Is there anything I can do to minimize it?" — LEE T., NEW YORK, NY

Ah, the bald spot, aka the flesh-colored yarmulke. If it really bothers you, it can be treated with drugs like Propecia or minoxidil, so talk to your doctor. But I say just go with it. Keep the sides nice and tight—if you have some length on top, short sides will make that look thicker. If it’s a really bad bald spot, buzz it down. You don’t have to be Jordan about it, but you definitely don’t want the Bozo the Clown look.

Then there’s the receding hairline. Again, in general, keep the sides and back shorter than the rest, with a little length on top.

As for specifics: There are two kinds of receding hairlines—a widow’s peak, and when it all moves back.

If you have a widow’s peak, quit bitching. That’s debonair—women love that shit. If it’s a real receding hairline, where the whole thing is moving back, just tell your barber you want it messy on top, or buzz it down. For that, go with a No. 3 or 2 razor guard on top, 1.5 on the bottom. If you do a comb-over to try and “hide” the hairline, you’ll just point a neon sign at yourself saying, “Look! I’m balding and insecure!”

We’ve all seen people try to hide it—it doesn’t look good. Do what Bruce Willis and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson do: Own it.

— Shorty Maniace is the owner of J.P. Kempt Barber & Social in San Francisco. Email him at

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