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The High Rise Haircut | A Fresh European Approach To Men's Design

Nick Roberson

Author Nick Roberson | Nick Roberson

New concepts and new traditions are what keep hairstyles alive each and every day. Whether it’s simply changing a part in your hair or using a matte finish product as opposed to glossy pomades, I encourage you to help your guests evolve. Not only will this help them build trust in you, but it will help you evolve as a hairdresser as well.

The really cool thing about this men’s haircut is that it’s bringing in the European side of things by pushing hair toward the face and making it appear lived-in or (second day).  It’s a look that we’re seeing a lot more on the streets and soon you will start to see it all over the country! In the past we’ve been used to hairstyles being pushed up and away from the face. The High Rise Haircut that you’re about to learn will change the way you think, say & do by adding volume and texture, but with a main point of difference – we’ll be moving the hair toward the face. As hairdressers, we need to get excited about change and help our guests to evolve their look based on their lifestyle, personality and interests.

Let’s get started!
Photography by Chris Bauer

How to create the High Rise Haircut

  • Begin by isolating and controlling the hair into a horseshoe parting directly on the round of the head.
  • As a general rule (not a law) for this haircut, it's best to work off of the round of the head for your parting. You can however adjust (by a half inch) if your clients head shape calls for a wide or narrow parting. The wider the head, the narrower the parting and vice versa.

  • Using a clipper over comb technique, begin at the front right corner of the ear, cutting parallel to the head (using the width of you comb as a guide for the length) and up to your previously sectioned horseshoe.

  • Let your comb continue to lay parallel to the head at all times (following the round of the head), this will allow inevitable detachment between the sides and top.
  • Continue this method around the head to the opposite side ending at the left corner in front of the ear to blend evenly.
  • HOT TIP:  What different shapes can I expect from adjusting the horseshoe higher or lower?
    • The wider (lower) the parting: This is going to create a very bold shape given you are leaving more hair while creating more depth.
    • The narrower (higher) parting: This will leave you with more of a mohawk style that is a bit more of a pronounced approach to the haircut.
  • For your first taper guide, attach the number one clipper guard (blade open) and begin to taper from the neckline up to the occipital.
  • For your second taper guide, move your clipper lever to (halfway) in between open and closed, then continue to taper from the neckline to 1/2 inch below your first taper.
  • For your last taper guide, move your clipper lever down (closed) and continue to taper from the neckline to 1/2 inch below your second taper.
  • HOT TIP:  When you begin moving up with your clipper, use a scooping technique up and away from the head, this will allow the hair to lay softer at the top.  The higher the elevation of hair, the softer it falls. No matter the length, this law always applies.

  • While continuing to work parallel to the head, soften any excess weight or length with your Sam Villa Reversible Blending Shear just below your horseshoe section. This will continue to allow detachment between the side and top but will ensure a smooth transition between the two.

Transitioning To The Top Section

  • In one-inch sections, pull hair down to the (right) side on the head take your Sam Villa Signature Series 7" Shear and point cut using the outside corner of the eye as a guide. This results in going from short to long, from the edges of the top graduating to the center.

  • Continue this until you run out of hair to cut and repeat this process on the left side of the head to blend evenly.
  • Taking the preserved length, twist individual triangular sections toward the face in half inch to one-inch sections and cut off with your Reversible Blending Shear.
  • HOT TIP: Why cut with a blending shear?  This will help you achieve a shattered effect.  Cutting with a blending shear will cause more of a disheveled outcome, allowing the hair to drape across the parietal like a veil.

Finishing The Style

  • Towel dry hair thoroughly then prep the hair with products.
  • Spray Redken Guts 10 at the base to create move lift & volume & Pillow Proof Primer throughout the hair to speed up the blow dry time and for additional hold.
  • Scrunch the hair on top to bring out the natural wave pattern.
  • Using the diffuser attachment on your Sam Villa Professional Ionic Blow Dryer, begin rough drying the hair starting at the crown and working towards the face. Using the diffuser will enable you to have better control of your finish as the airflow is concentrated and not as forceful as using a nozzle.
  • After removing 60% - 70% of the moisture from the hair, begin to press your diffuser into the hair while keeping your blow dryer parallel to the ceiling and slightly rotate clockwise. Hold it in that position for about 10 seconds. This will create lift and volume to your style.
  • Hot Tip:  Keep your hands out of the hair after you have begun your diffusion process, as the hand can be abrasive to curls while they are damp and create frizz.  Allow the diffuser nozzle to do a lot of the work for you; it’s your third hand! If frizz begins to appear, simply change your dryer to the cold air setting and low airflow, this will calm the unwanted frizz while still adding volume and direction to the hair.
  • Finish the style with Wax Blast 10.

The High Rise is now complete!  This style has double identity, meaning you can style this in multiple ways.  Experiment and let your guests get their hands in it!  Our clients are not only looking for a great haircut, they are looking for options.  Suggest this look to someone looking to shake up their style and add that European grunge feel!

If you have any questions or comments about this haircut please leave them in the box below

Follow me on Instagram for men's haircut inspiration & more! And every artist needs a great photographer... Check out my friend Chris Bauer at cbauerphotography.com.

Tag your photos with #samvilla for a chance to be featured on the Sam Villa Instagram account (@samvillahair).