Surfers effortlessly master one of the most challenging sports while showcasing some of the healthiest and most natural hairstyles. The allure of beach-inspired hair, ranging from flowing, sun-kissed locks to casually styled man buns, exudes a relaxed and laid-back charm.
Embracing the concept of “intentional dishevelment” may seem unconventional, yet styling surfer hair is surprisingly simple. A dependable wave spray and hair wax are your best allies in achieving this look.
Even if you typically prefer a more polished haircut, occasionally switching things up can be refreshing. Celebrities like Brad Pitt, Matthew McConaughey, and Chris Hemsworth have all sported surfer hair at various points in their careers, demonstrating its universal appeal.
For those ready to embrace the beach vibes and radiate carefree confidence, delve into our curated list of the top 30 surfer hairstyles for men. Whether aiming to catch waves or merely embody the aesthetic, these styles offer the freedom and ease of the surf culture.
1. MESSY BUN (WITH OR WITHOUT HIGHLIGHTS)
@giarogiarratana / Instagram
One of the most iconic surfer hairstyles is the messy bun, known for its convenience and effortless charm. With light brown or blonde hair, the natural highlights from saltwater and sun exposure beautifully accentuate any man bun. Even for those with dark brown or black hair, messy buns still evoke the carefree essence of surfer style
2. LONG CURLY HAIR
@hank_ge / Instagram
Long curly hair remains a surfer favorite, whether you’re navigating the California coast or embracing the island life in Hawaii. Surfers effortlessly maintain their curls courtesy of saltwater, although this style particularly shines on men blessed with natural curls. For those away from the shoreline, employing sea salt spray can replicate that coveted texture and the cherished waves associated with beach living.
P.S. Transitioning from a short hairstyle to long curly hair might involve an initial awkward “growing-out” phase.
3. MESSY CURLS
@jimy_09 / Instagram
Surfer hairstyles epitomize natural, effortless charm, and messy curls seamlessly fit into this aesthetic. Even for individuals with naturally curly hair, incorporating some mousse or pomade can enhance the texture, further complementing this relaxed style.
4. TOUSLED HAIR
@hughlaughtonscott / Instagram
For those aiming for a tousled appearance, there are several paths to achieve it. Men blessed with naturally wavy or voluminous hair can opt to apply sea salt spray or hair mousse throughout their locks, creating an effortlessly stylish look, particularly ideal for shorter surfer hair. Conversely, individuals with straight hair may explore an alternative method by braiding their hair loosely before bedtime and then applying a loose-hold hair clay in the morning, achieving that sought-after tousled hair effect.
5. LONG WAVY HAIR
@bieljuste / Instagram
10. MID FADE
@tobiasrtr / Instagram
The mid-fade haircut initiates between the temple and the ear, delivering a pleasing contrast while retaining some length on the crown of the head. This style is particularly favorable for individuals who appreciate symmetry and balance, as the mid fade effectively maintains a harmonious and balanced appearance.
11. LONG STRAIGHT HAIR
@timbo_td / Instagram
While requiring considerable maintenance, long hair complements numerous face shapes and offers opportunities for personalization through layering or highlighting natural curls. Long straight hair represents a less common yet compelling example of surfer-inspired hairstyles that men should undoubtedly consider. Embrace the journey of growing out your hair to explore this rustic and retro style, adding a unique touch to your look.
12. CREW CUT
@lukasgold / Instagram
Embraced by numerous dedicated surfers, the classic crew cut reflects a serious and business-like approach to style. This haircut, slightly longer than a buzz cut, upholds a trendy and chic allure, characterized by its precise edges and distinct definition, adding a touch of sophistication to one’s appearance.
13. UNDERCUT SURFER HAIRSTYLE
@troypes / Instagram
Much like a fade, an undercut contributes depth and definition, particularly at the back of the head. Whether you opt for a discreet undercut concealed beneath longer hair or prefer a uniform shorter length all over, this style choice ensures a sharp and contemporary appearance. The undercut surfer hairstyle delivers a modern and edgy vibe, offering a distinctive edge to one’s overall look.
14. MEDIUM LENGTH CURLS
@caesarvdidsert / Instagram
Medium-length curls offer a shag-inspired aesthetic, providing men with the versatility to switch between a rugged or polished appearance. Achieving a messy style is effortless: apply sea salt spray and allow the hair to fall loosely around the face. Alternatively, for a more refined and professional look, use pomade or hair wax to slick the hair back, presenting a groomed and polished style that complements the medium-length curls.
15. WET SURFER HAIR
@janis_danner / Instagram
Achieving the appearance of wet hair primarily involves allowing wet hair to air-dry naturally. Nonetheless, you can mimic the look of wet locks by using a moderate amount of hair oil or a shiny-finish hair gel. It’s essential to be mindful as this style can appear greasy, so it’s crucial not to over-apply the product, ensuring a sleek yet natural finish for the wet surfer hair aesthetic.
16. MEDIUM LENGTH STRAIGHT HAIR
@tetervinas / Instagram
Surfer hair is commonly linked with curly textures, yet straight hair can equally embrace a beach-inspired aesthetic. Medium-length straight hair, particularly with a middle part and a slightly tousled finish, exudes the relaxed and carefree essence associated with surfer hairstyles. This style of medium-length straight hair encapsulates the laid-back quality that’s emblematic of the surfer vibe.
17. SHORT CURLY HAIR
@eyalbooker / Instagram
Ideal for those seeking to celebrate their natural curls without the hassle of falling into their face, short curly hair offers a practical and stylish solution. Maintaining longer curls on the top and complementing it with a temple fade creates a sophisticated and refined appearance, providing a manageable yet fashionable style for those with short curly hair.
18. LONG WAVY HAIR WITH BEARD
@lucas.bloms / Instagram
For those aiming to elevate their style, consider combining a beard with your surfer-inspired hair. To achieve an authentic, island-inspired look, long wavy hair paired with a beard is an excellent choice. This combination not only embodies a relaxed, free-spirited vibe but also delivers an island-inspired aesthetic, perfect for men seeking an effortlessly cool and natural appearance.
19. CURLY QUIFF
@michaelyerger / Instagram
Curly quiffs, featuring longer hair on top and shorter sides, project a youthful and voluminous style. To achieve this surfer-inspired haircut, having naturally curly hair is essential. Along with the curls, using hair wax becomes crucial to help maintain the shape and volume of the hair on the crown, enhancing the overall look and structure of the curly quiff.
20. WAVY QUIFF
@zeno_vic / Instagram
For individuals who admire the curly quiff style but lack curly hair, opting for a wavy quiff is a great alternative. By utilizing wave spray and pomade, you can generate ample texture in the hair. To avoid strands falling forward, styling the hair back serves as an effective technique for achieving the wavy quiff look, offering a textured and sophisticated appearance.
21. SKIN FADE
@addismiller / Instagram
Resembling a buzz cut, the skin fade represents one of the shortest options in surfer hairstyles. While there’s room for creativity concerning the length of the hair on the crown, the sides and back of the head undergo a shaving process, almost to the scalp, resulting in a sharp and clean appearance that characterizes the skin fade style.
@kevinlutolf / Instagram
The pompadour hairstyle radiates an Elvis-inspired vibe with a contemporary twist. This shorter surfer haircut involves keeping the hair on the crown longer and fuller, then styling it back using a heavy-duty hair gel, resulting in a sleek and retro-modern look characteristic of the pompadour.
23. LONG MESSY FRINGE
@florianmacek / Instagram
To attain a fashionable long messy fringe, it’s essential to maintain a consistent hair length and use pomade to craft the desired fringe effect by grouping sections of the hair together. However, it’s crucial to note that this style can sometimes result in a stringy appearance, making it more suitable for men who embrace a slightly grungy aesthetic. The long messy fringe adds a distinctive and effortlessly stylish element to one’s overall look.
24. SHORT FRINGE
@tommyymayy / Instagram
For men, achieving a long messy fringe can work well with either short or long hair. Opting for shorter hair, one can request a fade while leaving the hair on the top longer, then using pomade to fashion the desired fringe effect. For further inspiration, exploring the longer Edgar haircut can offer additional ideas for creating this style. The shag haircut presents versatility and adaptability, allowing for the incorporation of a long, messy fringe across different hair lengths and styles.
25. SURFER CURTAINS
@andreafaccio / Instagram
Surfer curtains refer to relaxed, loose bangs that delicately frame the face, accentuating the cheekbones and creating a face-elongating effect. To achieve this hairstyle, communicate to your hairstylist the desire for curtain bangs of a longer length. This layered style beautifully combines a laid-back charm with an elegant touch, providing a versatile and chic look. Surfer curtains offer a unique way to frame the face, adding definition and a breezy appeal to one’s overall appearance.
@vinniehacker / Instagram
A shag haircut is a distinctive fusion of short and long hair, typically characterized by layers and feathering around the sides and crown of the head. Despite its messy and textured appearance, the shag maintains a defined style and shape, offering a unique yet structured look that combines various lengths and layers. This versatile hairstyle blends a playful, tousled vibe with a specific and deliberate haircut design, resulting in a chic and stylish overall effect.
27. SHORT WAVY HAIR
@noahbeck / Instagram
Resembling the shag style, short wavy hair typically falls around the ears, offering a breezy and natural appearance. To achieve a tousled and beach-inspired look, simply apply some wave spray and give your hair a casual toss for that relaxed and carefree vibe. Short wavy hair presents a versatile and effortlessly chic option for those seeking a textured and laid-back hairstyle.
28. BLONDE SURFER HAIR
@zanderhodgson / Instagram
For individuals naturally blessed with blonde hair, achieving the blonde surfer hair style comes rather effortlessly. Surfing itself has a natural hair-lightening effect, making it possible to avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals, especially if you already have naturally lighter hair. However, if you’re not an ardent surfer but aspire to attain this beachy look, starting with highlights and lowlights could serve as a stepping stone before fully bleaching your hair. This gradual process helps in achieving the sought-after blonde surfer hair without subjecting your hair to immediate and intensive bleaching.
29. SIDE SWEPT SURFER HAIRSTYLE’
@fabianxarnold / Instagram
Resembling the style made famous by Justin Bieber around 2011, the side-swept surfer hair remains a timeless classic. This look involves longer and fuller hair on the crown, while keeping the sides and back shorter. It’s a fantastic choice for men seeking a shorter surfer haircut, as it combines a longer, swept style on top with shorter sides, offering a classic and versatile appearance that’s both trendy and manageable.
30. EXTRA LONG SURFER HAIR
@iamrenanpacheco / Instagram
In pursuit of achieving extra long surfer hair, it’s crucial to commit to growing your hair to an extended length. However, it’s important to consider workplace norms, as this style might not be suitable for more formal or professional environments. Nevertheless, for those with a free-spirited mindset keen on embracing a carefree lifestyle, maintaining regular hair conditioning becomes a priority. By nurturing your hair consistently, you can promote healthy growth and swiftly achieve the desired extra-long surfer hair, reflecting the essence of the laid-back surfer culture.
SURFER HAIR (Frequently Asked Questions):
What is a Surfer Hairstyle?
Surfer hair epitomizes a carefree and effortless style. Typically, surfers are recognized for their natural and untouched hair, boasting a radiant quality derived from exposure to saltwater and the sun. Surfer hairstyles aren’t necessarily confined to lengthy locks, as various styles within the surfer aesthetic embrace the laid-back vibe without requiring long hair. The key is in capturing the effortless and natural essence reflective of the surfer culture.
How to Get a Surfer Haircut?
To achieve a surfer haircut with minimal effort, the initial step involves growing out your hair. Additionally, it’s essential to have pomade, mousse, and a reliable wave spray at your disposal. These products facilitate the maintenance of a textured look, even when you’re away from the beach environment that naturally defines and contributes to the appeal of surfer hair. Having these styling essentials on hand ensures that you can effortlessly maintain the desired surfer-inspired appearance.
How to Style a Surfer Haircut?
Enhancing your hair with pomade and a few spritzes of wave spray effectively imparts a textural quality reminiscent of saltwater, contributing to that authentic surfer look. These fundamental products are the key to styling a surfer haircut, providing a relaxed and effortlessly chic appearance. For those with longer hair, achieving the surfer-esque style can be as simple as pulling your hair up into a bun, offering a carefree yet stylish twist to your overall look.
How to Style Your Hair When Surfing?
Maintaining manageable hair while in the water is crucial for surfers. Short hair or a buzz cut effectively prevents hair interference, ensuring it stays out of the way during surfing sessions. For those with longer hair, styling it into a bun or ponytail offers a practical solution to keep hair secure and manageable while enjoying the waves. Utilizing salt water is beneficial for individuals with shaggier hair, as it helps push the hair back and away from the face, aiding in a more comfortable and hassle-free surfing experience.