Redefining Edginess: A Guide to Rat Tail Hairstyles for Men

Written By Well Groomed Gentleman

We are specialists in crafting styles for the sophisticated gentleman.

The rat tail hairstyle, once a hallmark of 1980s fashion, has resurfaced with a modern twist, now incorporating elements of Spartan Style Haircuts for a bold and unique statement in men’s hairstyling. This guide explores the resurgence of the rat tail, blending its retro roots with the fierce, warrior-like aesthetic of Spartan styles. Whether you’re seeking a subtle nod to the past or a full-on retro revival with a Spartan edge, this guide provides insights and tips needed to master the art of the rat tail hairstyle, infused with Spartan bravado.

1. Sleek Samurai Rat Tail

Sleek Samurai Rat Tail

This hairstyle blends the traditional samurai topknot with a modern rat tail twist. The hair on top is casually gathered into an undone bun, offering a laid-back yet youthful vibe. The rat tail itself is meticulously braided, hanging with precision, showcasing a fusion of carefree and meticulous styling. Loose strands around the bun add a touch of relaxed sophistication, ideal for those looking to stand out while embracing comfort.

2. Contemporary Undercut with Rat Tail Extension

Contemporary Undercut with Rat Tail Extension

Here we have a contemporary take on the classic undercut, paired with a rat tail that adds an unexpected edge. The sides are sharply faded, drawing attention to the detailed work, while the top maintains a textured, forward-swept look. The rat tail is left naturally straight, providing a stark contrast to the structured styling above. This style speaks to the rebellious spirit, perfect for those who play by their own rules and aren’t afraid to show it.

3. Retro Punk Rat Tail Revival

Retro Punk Rat Tail Revival

This hairstyle is a bold throwback to punk rock days, with a voluminous top leading to a slender rat tail. The hair is kept longer on top for a dramatic effect, styled upwards and back to challenge gravity. The rat tail is a sign of defiance, a slender braid that says much about the wearer’s non-conformist stance. It’s a style that’s not just a statement but a testament to the enduring appeal of punk culture.

4. Understated Rat Tail Elegance

Understated Rat Tail Elegance

This hairstyle demonstrates that rat tails can be understated yet distinctive. The hair is cropped close on the sides, with a neat fade that transitions smoothly into a longer, natural top. The rat tail is thin, almost understated, but it’s precisely this subtlety that makes it stand out. It’s a testament to the minimalist aesthetic, proving that even the most unassuming styles can leave a lasting impression.

5. Rainbow Punk Rat Tail Contrast

Rainbow Punk Rat Tail Contrast

A vivid statement of individuality, this style now incorporates elements of the Most Popular Kids’ Fade Haircuts, featuring a burst of color with a spiked top dyed in a rainbow palette, culminating in a braided rat tail. The rat tail, carrying hints of the rainbow, offers a continuity of the punk theme while adding a playful, youthful twist. It’s a style that’s bold and unique, perfect for those who carry their uniqueness with pride.

6. Rat Tail Sophistication in Discrete Style

Rat Tail Sophistication in Discrete Style

This hairstyle offers a sophisticated take on the rat tail, with a sleek back and sides leading to a modest tail. The top features a combed-back look, creating a clean and professional appearance. The rat tail, left to hang simply, is a nod to personal style without overwhelming the overall look. It’s perfect for the modern man who appreciates a touch of uniqueness in his grooming.

7. Casual Rat Tail Approach for Everyday

Casual Rat Tail Approach for Everyday

This rat tail style is casual and easy to maintain, ideal for daily wear. The hair is cut in a practical, layered fashion, giving the top some volume and movement. The rat tail is integrated seamlessly, hanging in a loose braid that moves naturally. This look is all about ease and personal expression, suited for those who want a hint of edge in their everyday look.

8. Business in the Front, Party in the Back Rat Tail

Business in the Front Party in the Back Rat Tail

A modern twist on the mullet concept, this style keeps it business-like in the front with a clean and tidy top, while the rat tail in the back adds a playful, rebellious element. The tail itself is sleek and braided, signaling a meticulous nature with a penchant for personal flair. This style caters to the professional who likes to maintain a sense of individuality.

9. Blond Ambition Rat Tail

Blond Ambition Rat Tail

The stark contrast of blonde against darker hair adds a dramatic effect to this rat tail style. The top is kept short and neat, allowing the intricately braided tail to take center stage. It’s a style that balances a conservative cut with a bold statement, perfect for those who wish to subtly defy norms without compromising on elegance.

10. Wet Look Rat Tail with Attitude

Wet Look Rat Tail with Attitude

This style exudes attitude, now enhanced with elements of a Fade Haircut with Beard. It features a wet-look finish on the top, giving the illusion of being fresh out of the shower, paired with a rebellious rat tail that adds a grunge element. The tail is left unbraided, hanging naturally to contrast the styled top. The sides are faded, blending into a well-groomed beard, creating a sharp, contemporary edge.

11. Classic Grayscale Rat Tail

Classic Grayscale Rat Tail

This style presents a timeless grayscale blend, where the hair gracefully transitions from salt-and-pepper shades to a singular, tightly braided rat tail. The length of the hair up top is kept conservative, with the tail providing a personal touch of flair. It’s a style that balances maturity with a hint of edginess, embodying a subtle defiance against conventional short hairstyles for men.

12. Minimalist Chic Rat Tail

Minimalist Chic Rat Tail

Here we see a minimalist approach to the rat tail hairstyle, with a clean, close-cropped cut that emphasizes the small but distinct tail. This tiny tail, a slender tether to the unconventional, proves that sometimes less is indeed more. It’s a nod to the rat tail trend that doesn’t scream for attention but rather whispers a statement of individuality and modern chic.

13. Youthful Swirl Rat Tail

Youthful Swirl Rat Tail

Tailored for the youngest fashion-forward crowd, this hairstyle swirls into a bun up top, leading down to a neatly braided rat tail. The style exudes a playful spirit, perfectly suited for the energetic and carefree nature of youth. The rat tail itself adds a dash of adventure, hinting at both a rebellious streak and a charming sense of style.

14. Curly Cascade Rat Tail

Curly Cascade Rat Tail

This hairstyle embraces natural curls, allowing them to cascade freely before narrowing into a braided rat tail. It’s a celebration of texture and volume, offering a contrast between untamed curls and the discipline of a braid. This style is perfect for the modern man who takes pride in his natural locks but wants to add a personal twist to his look.

15. Blonde Highlight Rat Tail

Blonde Highlight Rat Tail 1

Standing out on the field, this style plays with color contrast, featuring blonde highlights that lead the eye to a singularly braided rat tail. It’s a sporty look that combines the utility of short sides and back with the surprise of a playful tail. This rat tail style is for those who enjoy standing out in a crowd, making a statement without saying a word.

Caring for and Maintaining Your Rat Tail

Maintaining a rat tail hairstyle involves more than just regular haircuts. To ensure your rat tail remains in top condition, follow these essential care and maintenance tips:

  1. Regular Trimming: Keep the rest of your hair neatly trimmed to accentuate the rat tail. This contrast is crucial for the style’s impact. Depending on your hair growth, a trim every 3-4 weeks might be necessary.
  2. Washing and Conditioning: Use a high-quality shampoo and conditioner to keep both your hair and the rat tail clean and hydrated. This is especially important if you have a colored rat tail, as color treatments can dry out your hair.
  3. Styling Products: Choose styling products that suit your hair type. For a sleek rat tail, use gels or pomades. For a more natural look, lighter products like mousses or sprays can be effective.
  4. Braiding and Unbraiding: If your rat tail is braided, regularly unbraiding and rebraiding it can prevent tangling and damage. This also gives you the opportunity to thoroughly clean and condition the hair.
  5. Protecting Your Hair: When engaging in activities that could damage your hair (like swimming), protect your rat tail with a cap or tie it up to prevent tangling and exposure to harmful elements.
  6. Regular Check-ups with a Stylist: Regular visits to a professional hairstylist can help maintain the shape and health of your rat tail. They can also provide valuable advice on products and care techniques specific to your hair type.
  7. Healthy Diet and Hydration: Remember, the health of your hair starts from within. A balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals, along with proper hydration, can significantly improve the quality of your hair.

By following these care and maintenance tips, you can ensure that your rat tail hairstyle remains as striking and stylish as the day you got it.

Rat Tail Hairstyles 1

Styling the Rat Tail on Curly, Straight, or Wavy Hair

Styling a rat tail hairstyle varies significantly depending on your hair type. Here are some tips for styling this unique haircut on curly, straight, or wavy hair:

  1. Curly Hair:
    • Embrace the Curls: Let your natural curls shine. Use a curl-defining cream or gel to enhance the texture.
    • Low Manipulation: Avoid over-styling. Curly hair is prone to breakage, so gentle handling is key.
    • Regular Moisturizing: Keep your hair hydrated with leave-in conditioners or oils to prevent frizz.
  2. Straight Hair:
    • Sleek and Sharp: Use a fine-tooth comb and a light hold gel to keep your rat tail sleek and defined.
    • Regular Trims: Keep the edges sharp with regular trims, as split ends are more noticeable in straight hair.
    • Avoid Heavy Products: Use light styling products to prevent the hair from looking greasy or weighed down.
  3. Wavy Hair:
    • Natural Waves: Enhance your natural waves with a sea salt spray or mousse for added texture.
    • Soft Styling: Avoid overusing heat tools. Instead, let your hair air dry to maintain the natural wave pattern.
    • Volume at the Base: Apply a volumizing product at the base of the rat tail to give it a fuller appearance.

Regardless of your hair type, the key to a great rat tail hairstyle is maintenance and using the right products. Curly hair needs moisture and minimal manipulation, straight hair requires sleekness and regular trims, and wavy hair looks best when its natural texture is enhanced. With these tips, you can ensure your rat tail hairstyle looks its best.