The 1950s kept giving the world one classic after another; be it films, music, fashion, or just lifestyles. The experience also included some edgy hairstyles that are still alive and kicking, and the Ducktail Haircut belongs to that long list of 50s classics that are relevant even today.
Hairstyles have been crucial as the perfect medium for the self-expression of an individual for a long time now. In the middle of the 20th century, the celebration of individualism achieved priority over everything else. People began breaking out of the conformity standards and wearing anything they like. That is when uptight hairstyles started becoming popular as well.
Ducktail Haircut is one of those edgy styles that covered a lot of the 1950s and 60s with its defining features. This hairdo resembles the back of a duck, and it was known as Duck’s Arse, Duck’s Ass, or simply D.A. haircut as well. The style involves having a center part in the back of the head, and the side hair is combed toward that center part until the Ducktail look forms.
For this Ducktail Haircut guide, we have selected 35 awesome variations to show you. Afterward, we will include a quick guide to getting a Ducktail style in 8 simple steps. Finally, we will give you more information about this style through our FAQ section.
Let’s get going!
Table of Contents
- 35 Fascinating Variations of Ducktail Haircut
- Classic Ducktail
- Ducktail Pomp
- Messy Wave
- Greaser Duck
- White Slicked Back
- Chaotic Layered Ducktail
- Flat Top
- Heartbeat Line
- Square Tail
- Slicked Mullet
- Elvis Pompadour
- Ducktail with Temple Fade
- Burst Fade Mullet
- High Temple Fade
- Ducktail Undercut
- Bleached Top
- Low Temple Fade Quiff
- Long Ducktail with Pomp Mullet
- Spicy Two-Tone
- Slick & Pointy
- Jelly Duck
- Drop Fade
- Taper Waves
- Golden Pompadour
- Punk Mohawk
- Semi-Quiff Texture
- Reverse Greaser with Drop Fade
- Side-Shaved Ducktail
- Rockabilly Greaser
- Grey Mullet
- Duck Mohawk with Sharp 0 On the Sides
- Long & Simple
- Slicked Back Wave
- Ducktail for Balding Crown
- Short and Quick
- How to Get a Ducktail Haircut?
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Final Words
35 Fascinating Variations of Ducktail Haircut
Ducktail Haircuts are usually customized by adding Quiffs, Pompadours, Fades, etc. to them. As a result, there are now over hundreds of Ducktail looks out there. In this section, we will discuss the best 35 hand-picked variations of the Ducktail haircut for you. Make sure to read the description for each style carefully, and check the pictures of the style at the same time to understand it better.
The Classic Ducktail is a suitable haircut for medium hair. It is also the simplest version of the Ducktail. The hair on the sides is combed to the back while also maintaining a noticeable part down the middle in the back of the head.
Back in the day, a lot of the traditional Ducktail haircuts also had an Elephant’s Trunk at the front. It simply extended the waves of the side hair to the front and had a curvy appearance to resemble the Trunk of an Elephant with the front hair.
Ducktail Haircut’s most worn variations included a Pompadour. People who liked avoiding Elephant’s Trunk with their Ducktail always opted for a nice and clean Pomp. And the Ducktail looked wonderful in these variations too!
Due to the Pompadour, the top hair looked to have some excellent waves that came to the back to create the Ducktail. The tail was usually shorter and had pointy ends whenever it was combined with a Pompadour at the front.
Ducks’ tails are naturally fluffy. Especially if it is a big duck, the feathers create a full and velvety appearance. In this Messy Wave variation of Ducktail Haircut, that concept is followed to a tee.
The hair at the back produces a voluminous Ducktail in this style. The combed hair on the sides is kept intentionally messy to preserve the fluffy look. Although Ducktail styles were not meant for too long hair, this Messy Wave emerges as a great option to wear the Ducktail even if the hair is medium or long.
The Greaser subculture had an inseparable connection with the Ducktail Haircut. The rebellious working class and teenage followers of Greasers changed the fashion experience in the 1950s. Ducktail haircuts had nonconforming energy attached to them already, and the Greasers made their presence known by modifying the front look of it.
The Greaser Ducktail retained the main component of the Ducktail but changed the popular Pompadour at the front. They simply reversed it to make the Ducktail look bolder and edgier.
White Slicked Back
While the Slick Back is considered a fundamental part of the Ducktail by many 1950s enthusiasts, people experimented constantly with the appearance of it. For instance, in this example here with White Slicked Back, the hair has more texture than they usually have otherwise.
As a result, the Ducktail has a more prominent view than what a traditional variation looks like. Now, although it is a White Slicked Back we are talking about here, the endings may have a darker shade if your hair has a natural look.
Chaotic Layered Ducktail
We already mentioned that Ducktail haircuts held so much energy for the rebellious souls in the 50s. This Chaotic Ducktail represents that spirit wholeheartedly. The tail in this variation is strictly messy yet has a fuller look.
The ducktail blends in with the rest of the hair seamlessly in this striking variation. The layered hair helps develop and maintain the chaos in the back while also retaining some of the characteristics of the Ducktail itself.
Flat Top styles in the 50s were primarily military personnel-exclusive things. Officials of higher rank wore this rugged style to align their robust characters with it. However, due to the Flat Top’s sharp appearance, it got incorporated into the Ducktail haircut.
Now, the Ducktail already had a super slick look because of its intense combing procedure. The Flat Top also followed a similar principle since the style was probably the cleanest one back then. When it got combined with the Ducktail Haircut, the ultimate look appeared so refined and fancy.
This Ducktail variation is more of a modified modern version because it includes an intricate line design just below the tail. The use of Lines in haircuts was pretty much limited in the 50s. Furthermore, this style has a sharp temple fade that paves the way for the Heartbeat Line at the back.
The Ducktail here is smaller than most variations you can find. And this small tail looks so on point with the line design underneath it. They complement each other wonderfully in this particular Ducktail Haircut style.
This Square Tail variation tells the tale of a strong personality. The whole hair is given a box look by trimming it down where necessary. It almost has a Flat Top look, but the texture is so low for it to be considered a Flat Top.
In this style, the Ducktail has a rough look instead of a traditional smooth tail. The sides are combed to the back to create a pointy presence that comes from the tail itself which is placed just below the crown. That’s it!
The Slicked Mullet gives you an overpowered version of the Ducktail Haircut. It has the most-desired slick look of the Ducktail, and this slick is mainly a part of the Mullet here.
Instead of a typical Pompadour or any other extravagant look at the front, the entire hair is brushed to the back to create the Mullet. And the end of the mullet is given the Ducktail appearance to finish it off. If you want something extra, you can even get a small taper on the sides to spice things up.
Elvis Presley, the King of Rock n’ Roll was the proponent of the Pompadour with Ducktail Haircut in the 1950s. The style was yet to be known as the Pompadour but since it was a signature style of Elvis, it got popular more as “The Elvis Style” or “The Elvis Cut” than anything else.
The idea behind this style was simple yet so magnificent. The Pompadour got all the attention in this variation and the Ducktail took the second-row seat. But as time went by, the Ducktail also got noticed equally. As a result, Elvis Pompadour started getting considered as a Two-Styles-in-One thing.
Ducktail with Temple Fade
In the mid-1950s, people began wearing the Ducktail Haircut more and more. The need for modifying it according to people’s tastes became necessary. And adding a Fade or Taper to a style was one of the easiest but most effective ways to enhance a look.
In this variation, that approach was followed, and a basic Temple Fade was added to the Ducktail which made it more attractive than it already was. Also, only the top hair was utilized for the Ducktail, leaving the side hair intact.
Burst Fade Mullet
The Burst Fade Mullet version of the Ducktail Haircut looks so out of this world. The fade creates amazing contrast in this style. Moreover, the spiky appearance of the hair contributes to making it a youthful look for those who are interested in edgy hairstyles.
Ducktail Haircuts were bold and uptight enough due to their extreme inward waves. So when the Burst Fade got added to it, the overall look became insanely popular, especially among Asians. Slowly, this Burst Fade Ducktail Mullet became a noticeable Asian Mullet style, and it is still going strong today.
High Temple Fade
This High Temple Fade variation of the Ducktail Haircut comes with a sophisticated appearance. The thick hair produces the most gorgeous-looking Ducktail, and the sideburn areas have a clean High Temple Fade to work with the magnificence of the Ducktail.
The top hair in this style has a slicked-back appearance without making any resemblance with the Pompadour. Also, the tail at the back has a rather blunt look than a pointy finish. Considering all the elements of this style, it can be a top choice for people who always seek out voluminous hairstyles with an extra edge.
Like any other haircut, Ducktails too went through an evolution. At one point, the Undercut style made its way into the Ducktail category and revealed a look with many possibilities. While the traditional Ducktail was created by combing hair around the sides, the Undercut almost got rid of the sides and came with an incredible arrangement.
Due to the sides being faded or shaved, the Undercut approach gave the Ducktail the appearance of a sitting duck’s behind. The style nearly looked like a headless duck when done correctly, and it was a completely new look in the hairstyle arena. As a result, this Ducktail Undercut got highly popular pretty soon.
Coloring the hair to refresh a haircut is an old technique, and it has never stopped being useful. The Ducktail Haircut also complies with this technique. As an example, you can see a superb Ducktail haircut here which has got its top hair bleached for the ultimate effect.
Since some hair at the front is free from the bleaching action and they have a darker tone than the bleach, the hair seems to have a continuous wave. And the curved hair at the back of the Ducktail also provides enough distinction to sustain the awesomeness of this style.
Low Temple Fade Quiff
This Ducktail variation is a massive unification of three styles in total: The Ducktail, the Quiff, and the Temple Fade. Needless to say, each style retains its magnetic looks fully although they get basically mixed in a pot for this variation.
The hair can be divided into three parts for this style. The front will have the Quiff, the back will have the Ducktail, and the sides will rock a Low Temple Fade. And these three elements follow the process to get their most traditional variants of the styles.
Long Ducktail with Pomp Mullet
If you like hairstyles that can utilize your long hair to the fullest, this Long Ducktail with Pomp Mullet could be your best choice. Similar to the previous variation, this is a combination of three different styles. Here, the Pompadour, Mullet, and the Ducktail in a long look play the game together.
The mullet in this style extends the Ducktail by taking up its own space below it. It goes past the nape area behind the head. And the front hair displays a tidy Pompadour that grabs much of the attention.
This Spicy Two-Tone style has many things going all at once. While the focus may be on top of the head, the clean Ducktail at the back does the main job perfectly.
We recommend always getting a bright tone to create good contrast if you have dark hair and vice versa. Make sure that the color is limited to the top hair so that the Ducktail will get enough space to work its magic.
Slick & Pointy
People’s constant experimentations with the Ducktail Haircut have produced this interesting Ducktail variation. The style is naturally slick-looking because of the Ducktail itself. But the tail is given a pointy ending as it reaches the lower back area of the head.
When looking at it from behind, this Ducktail Haircut shows that it resembles a real Duck’s behind perfectly.
The Jelly Roll hairstyle was extremely popular in the 1950s. In this style, the top hair had a middle part, and each section rolled inward to create a barrel-looking shape. In this Jelly Duck variation, the Jelly Roll meets the Ducktail to give you a great look.
The rolling procedure takes place at the top according to the usual method. It continues to the back where the lower part of the hair is given the Ducktail finish. And the sides can have a 2 On the Sides trimming down to make the Jelly Duck more visible.
This Ducktail Haircut variation is super fresh and energetic, thanks to the contribution of Drop Fade in this look. The Ducktail is simple and measured because the fade takes away much of the hair both on the sides and the back.
However, despite having a short tail, this haircut looks amazing. The Drop Fade’s curved outline only made the Ducktail appear cleaner. Also, if you have short hair and want to wear the Ducktail, this style can deliver what you want flawlessly.
The Taper Waves is one of the best Ducktail variations with short hair on the sides. The Taper here excellently blends the sides into the top hair which creates the Ducktail. The wavy appearance of the top hair makes the Ducktail more attractive than it may look with straight hair.
The Taper leaves enough hair under the Ducktail wave to achieve a nice gradient. As you can see, this Taper-Ducktail combo hits the spot easily with its charming view!
The Golden Pompadour here uses all the shines one can get for their Ducktail Haircut. The hair is combed with extra care to produce the Ducktail here. And the golden color of the hair enhances the overall look with extra shine.
The process for this Golden Pompadour is similar to a Jelly Roll’s approach. While the usual Ducktail has a parting only in the back for the tail to appear, this specific variation has a long part that begins just behind the Pompadour and extends to the lower nape area. And the tail has a round look instead of a sharp pointy finish for this style.
This variation of the Ducktail Haircut follows the Punk Subculture for its modified appearance. Punk was famous for edgy hairstyles, and intense spiky mohawk hairstyles were a signature of that subculture. The Ducktail is edgy enough, but it dared to take things up a notch by adding Punk into the mix.
As a result, this Punk Mohawk Ducktail became a significant attraction to especially the rebellious people. The tail itself follows Punk to keep the hair spiky at the back. And the combing technique is purely from the Ducktail which ensures a neat and clean look with those prominent spikes.
This hairstyle relies more on the Quiff and texture of the hair than the Ducktail itself. Although the Quiff has a slightly messy look, it attracts most of the attention.
The Ducktail is really small in this style due to the short hair and the faded or tapered sides. Nonetheless, the textured hair along with the Semi-Quiff does a pretty good job of accompanying the Ducktail with its lovely presence.
Reverse Greaser with Drop Fade
The Greaser turns up with a Drop Fade in this style. But the Greaser front has a reverse look with a refined finish here. Instead of the front hair going outward, in this specific style, the hair makes an opposite curve, and it ends right on top of the head.
Now, the Drop Fade defines the area for the Ducktail. But unlike getting the side hair combed toward the back, this time, only the hair at the back is responsible for creating the Ducktail. The side hair is combed downward to maintain consistency with the Drop Fade.
Some people always opt for passionate hairstyles that have the capability to represent the energetic spirits of those individuals. This Side-Shaved Ducktail variation is one of those special styles.
As you can guess from the name, the sides are shaved for this look. Only the top hair remains which extends to the back. It may seem to replicate the appearance of a Mohawk, but its divided end for the Ducktail takes away this speculation. Finally, the hair on the top is brushed-back to achieve the maximum output for this superb Ducktail variation.
The Rockabilly subculture of the 1950s joined forces with the Greaser subculture to give us this amazing Rockabilly Greaser style in a Ducktail Haircut. These two subcultures had so many similarities that people still get confused about the two and think that they are the same thing.
The Rockabilly hairstyles included having well-defined brushed hair. The hair was given extra textures to contain the Rockabilly features. And the Greaser front with that brushed hair seemed so fitting as a part of an edgy style.
Ducktail Haircuts usually require having slightly longer hair at the back for creating the tail look. As a result, a lot of Ducktail styles look similar to Mullets. This Grey Mullet variation is a great example of such an instance where the pointy Ducktail ends gives out the impression of having long hair at the back.
It is also one of the most straightforward Ducktail styles. The hair only needs to be brushed back. As the brushing process reaches the end of the hair, some slightly outward strokes will make it pointy like Duck’s tail usually is. That’s it!
Duck Mohawk with Sharp 0 On the Sides
This style comes with some complications. The top hair gets the attention because of the Ducktail for sure. However, the sides have two things going on simultaneously. Almost in a Burst Fade fashion, the temple and the area close to the ears are shaved off. Then the rest of the side hair is given a 0 On the Sides treatment.
Now, the top hair gets busy producing the fancied Ducktail by getting a good comb back. Then the back hair manufactures the tail-like appearance of the duck through a half Jelly Roll style.
Long & Simple
If you like the look of Ducktail Haircuts but do not prefer the appearance of the pointy tails, this Long & Simple variation should be enough. It asks you to grow your hair longer before trying it out. Here, the side hair helps build up the Ducktail in a round shape at the back.
This style is harder to maintain because it strongly depends on the natural quality of your hair. And you need to comb the hair a few times every day to preserve the look.
Slicked Back Wave
The Slicked Back Wave is a great straightforward Ducktail style. The top hair is brushed in a Slick Back manner, and the hair at the back creates the Ducktail portion.
The side hair is trimmed to keep them short in this variation of the Ducktail Haircut. With the Slick Back, these short sides may give the feeling to others that it is yet another typical Slicked Back style. But then, the Ducktail hits them with a surprise as it reveals itself slowly. Amazing, isn’t it?
Ducktail for Balding Crown
Having a good amount of top hair is important for any Ducktail Haircut. It assists with creating a proper Ducktail at the back of the head. However, this variation shows a different scenario. If there is only the same hair at the back while having nothing on top, it is still possible to get a Ducktail Haircut.
This variation shows a great and successful attempt at producing a Ducktail on someone who has a balding crown. Only the hair at the back and some of the side hair are involved in this Ducktail. Due to the short length of the hair, the style is kept messy to make it appear fuller and natural.
Short and Quick
This Ducktail Haircut is specially dedicated to individuals who only wear short hairstyles and do not want to spend too much time styling their hair. We know that Ducktail variations need at least medium hair for them to work out the way they are supposed to. But in this style, the hair gets the job done, and additionally, it comes with some smooth textures as well!
Since the hair is short, you have to be tactical about it to turn it into a Ducktail style. Do not trim your sides at all before getting this hairdo. Brush the top hair in a slick back technique. Then, start from one of your sides and brush that side hair to the back around the area. Continue the process for the other side as well to complete the process.
How to Get a Ducktail Haircut?
The process of getting a standard Ducktail Haircut includes 8 steps. We are discussing them below. Follow each step carefully to get your Ducktail style with simple efforts.
Step 1: Growing the Hair
As the first step of getting your Ducktail Haircut, you must grow your hair to at least four inches. Make sure to take proper care of your hair while you are growing the hair.
Step 2: Washing the Hair
Wash your hair with a sulfate-free shampoo. Then apply conditioner to the hair to moisturize them thoroughly. It is vital to ensure that your hair has enough moisture before you move on to the next step.
Step 3: Sectioning the Hair
In this step, section your hair into three parts. If you can divide your hair to have three equal sections, it will work well. At the very least, ensure that the sides have enough hair to produce the Ducktail.
Step 4: Managing the Sides [Optional]
If you are opting for a modern Ducktail Haircut variation, you can get your sides trimmed or faded according to your preference. It must be done before you begin combing the hair to produce the Ducktail.
Step 5: Creating the Guideline
This is the most crucial part of the Ducktail Haircut experience. Make sure that you find out the absolute center of the back of your head. Comb the hair to the sides there to create a parting line. Then check if it creates a good symmetry. If you are satisfied with it, trim or create a hard part in that line to define the direction for the Ducktail.
Step 6: Combing the Hair
In this step, start combing your hair toward the back and around your sides. Start from one side and then move to the other side when you are done with your current side. Keep combing until you create a wavy appearance with your hair.
When you figure out that you have become successful with the combing process because you have managed to give the back hair a Ducktail look, move on to the next step.
Step 7: Applying the Gel
Now apply some pomade or hair gel to your Ducktail in order to maintain the look. Do it two times every day for the first week after getting your Ducktail style.
Step 8: Maintenance
You must take proper care of your Ducktail Haircut every day. Carefully comb your hair to refresh the look of your Ducktail at least three times daily. Also, if you see that your Ducktail is losing its slick look, get some trimming done to reinvigorate the ending of your hair.
Never put any pressure on your Ducktail because it will undo your style. Do not wear anything tightly around your head either.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
In this part of the guide, we will answer some questions that people ask frequently. These answers have more information about Ducktail Haircut, if you feel interested.
Q: Who popularized the Ducktail Haircut?
Ans: The American Singer Elvis Presley is behind the popularization of the Ducktail Haircut.
Q: Is the Ducktail Haircut low-maintenance?
Ans: No. Ducktail Haircut is one of the most high-maintenance styles that requires extra care.
Q: Can the Ducktail be combined with other hairstyles?
Ans: Absolutely! You can couple the Ducktail Haircut with various kinds of Fade, Taper, Pompadour, Quiff, Mullet, Mohawk, etc. without facing any trouble. We have already discussed some of the variations in this guide that include these styles.
Q: How can I prevent my Ducktail Haircut from looking messy?
Ans: Always try to trim your hair every few weeks to refresh your Ducktail Haircut. This way, there will be no chance for your style to get messy.
Q: How long does it take to grow out hair for a Ducktail Haircut?
Ans: The hair needs to be at least four to six inches long for a Ducktail Haircut. Depending on how long the hair is at a given time, it may take around a month to over four months for growing out hair for a Ducktail style.
Q: Can women wear a Ducktail Haircut?
Ans: While Ducktail Haircuts have always been primarily for men, there is no problem with women wearing a variation of the Ducktail according to their taste.
Q: Is a Ducktail Haircut suitable for formal office settings?
Ans: No. Ducktail Haircuts are super edgy and should be avoided wearing to formal situations. However, since policies vary from office to office, you should check out your own office policy to see if edgy haircuts are allowed in the workplace.
Q: Can I wear a hat with my Ducktail hairdo?
Ans: Yes, you can. But we strongly suggest against wearing a hat if you have a Ducktail haircut. The hat will put too much pressure on your Ducktail, and it will lead your Ducktail to become flat and get destroyed eventually.
Ducktail Haircuts have come a long way since they got popular during the mid-1950s. Even after 70 years, the appeal of the Ducktail style has not been reduced. Rather, these styles get a modern touch frequently, and as a result, they now turn up with new looks that people cannot help loving.
Ducktail variations are a source of inspiration for edgy hairstyle enthusiasts. Besides being a classic style, there are some charming elements in every Ducktail hairdo you see. The look of a Ducktail style may appear weird to some, but that is exactly why it is an excellent nonconforming style to wear.
In our guide, we talked about the 35 most gorgeous variations of the Ducktail Haircut. If you are interested in this super uptight style, these 35 variations will show you the whole picture of it. You can choose to pick a variation from the guide and wear it directly, or you can also take a style and customize it in your own way to make it your unique and individual style.
Whatever you do, please share your experience with us in the comment section below. We look forward to hearing from you.