February 15th, 2010
Black History Month, Men's style, Throwback
Black History Fashion Trend: The High Top Fade
By The Fashion Bomb Staff

In the late 1980s, as the Jheri Curl literally started to dry up, African Americans returned to more afro-centric looks and began to wear their hair sans-chemicals. Guys and gals alike were slowly growing their hair to new lengths, going up instead of down, and tapering the sides. Thus the high top fade was born.

Rocked by rappers like Big Daddy Kane, 2Pac, and MC Serch, the high top fade took to new lengths when Kid from rap duo Kid N’ Play sported his height-defying fade. The style saw many incarnations including a sort of female version of the ‘do (seen on Queen Latifah in her duet with fellow rapper Monie Love “Ladies First” video as well as on fashion icon Grace Jones) and had everything from a line in the front to elaborated scenery in the back to an asymmetrical slope known as the Gumby (worn by artists like R&B divo Bobby Brown).

By the mid to late 1990s, the high top fade was played, but the style saw a small resurgence in the late 2000s when the Retro Kidz came on the scene.

More flashback pics (even your boy Hov had a fade):

Check out these high top fade approved old school videos:

Big Daddy Kane: “Ain’t No Half Steppin’”

“House Party”: The Dance-Off Scene feat Kid N’ Play, Tisha Campbell, and A.J. Johnson

My sis had a high top fade back in the day. I’d post pics but I prefer to not get a beat down…lol. What are your high top fade memories?


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8 Responses to “Black History Fashion Trend: The High Top Fade”

  1. isaiah says:

    yo man i have a hightop right now and im trying to live the 80s life yo.

    i need some more stuff to put in my hair or to make it more 1980s look do you have any ideas?

  2. RAYRAY says:

    Check out the official video for my new Jerk Song, “High Top Fade” For real… it’s DOPE!!!!!!

  3. [...] Over the decades, Black People have had quite a few hairstyles…From the Jheri Curl, to the High-Top Fade, Dreadlocks, Braids (or as White People call them, Cornrows), & my all-time [...]

  4. Scream says:

    Grace Jones actually had a fade before anyone else did.

  5. rayne says:

    Yeah, Grace Jones actually pioneered it. Ironic ain’t it?

  6. Marquis says:

    A fascinating discussion is definitely worth comment. I think that you need to write more
    about this issue, it may not be a taboo subject but generally folks don’t speak about such subjects.
    To the next! Many thanks!!

  7. baidu.com says:

    What’s Going down i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It positively useful and
    it has helped me out loads. I hope to give a contribution & aid different customers like its helped me.

    Great job.

  8. […] hybrid R&B style, the hip-hop-influenced New Jack Swing (or maybe we should call it “hi-top fade music”). But it’s never really gone away. Tune in to the obligatory “old-school […]

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