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The Art of the Flattop (Flat Top) Haircut

Updated on September 6, 2017

Best Flattop of All-Time

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Flattop (Flat-top) Crewcuts

If you aren't familiar with flattops or flat-top haircuts, they are cut very short on the sides with an oh, so slight taper until you get to the top of the head. Then the perfect flattop is about 3/4 of an inch long in the front, but may be a 1/8 of an inch long at the pinnacle of your scalp depending on the shape of your head. The skilled barber will make it perfectly flat with a landing strip that comes down the middle and fades into the front hairline. The landing strip is the hair on the top that is cut shortest and runs from the front to the back. The whiteness of the scalp has less of a shadow from the long hair on the sides and looks like a perfect place to land a toy plane.

Don't confuse flattops with a punk style cut. These are pure clean cuts. Although, nothing screams March Maddness like a freshly cut flattop. A flatop is a very special haircut that few barbars have mastered. In fact, I've only found one. For $7 in San Luis Obispo, you can get the world's greatest flattop at Ray's Barbershop. I've been going to Ray and his daughter Page since I was a little kid. He's worth the trip to San Luis Obispo alone.

The flattop became popular in the 1950s and remains popular with the Marines and midwestern basketball players. We all saw Hoosiers and I think a perfect flattop is a prerequisite to a smooth as butter jumper.

The World's Best Flattops at Ray's Barbershop

2030 Parker St San Luis Obispo, CA 93401:
2030 Parker St, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

get directions

This is the place you want to go to get a flattop hair cut.

Flattops Cure the World

Tired of dealing with curly hair ( Get a flattop, use a little butch wax and your worries are gone. You might not end up with an award winning haircut, but if you're getting dressed up for halloween ( as a basketball player, then you can't go wrong with a flattop to bring the entire costume together.


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      It has been two years now that I walk around with a flat top haircut. My husband insists that I get it re-cut evert two weeks or so.

      Right from the start I hated to look like that, but he likes me to look like that...

      Last year he invited a tattoo artist to our home, after he had fed me several drinks.

      Now I wear not only a flattop, but have to go through life with two big tattoos on my lower arms.

      I guess you get used to verything, but I will never like it.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I still have a flattop and now I have been to the tattoo

      parlor too. Believe it oe not, I now have a very colorful

      tattoo on the left side of my face !

      My bf wanted it and I got it now !!

      He loves it and I still don't know if I will ever get used to it.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      My husband started to watch this and now I hhave to have a flat top too ...!!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I have a Flat top and I love it, very low maintenance - have it tightened up every 2 weeks

    • Paul Edmondson profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Edmondson 

      8 years ago from Burlingame, CA

      I haven't had a flattop in a long time, but I'm considering going back to one.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I have had a Flattop hair cut on and off for over 10 years. Right now I have one started wearing one again in june of this year. My husand love it on me I'm 50 now I think I'm keep it for a few years this time I go every 7 days to get it cut at the barbershop, But I don't have to do anything with my hair from cut to cut. I love my hair.

    • profile image


      8 years ago


      I would love to see your flat top haircut! Very nervy!

      And i would like to tell you that I love to see arm tattoos on a girl.

      Face and neck tattoos are very gutsy and very sexy!

      Whatever make sure they are nicely colorful! No stupid tribals.....

      Good luck to you.


    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Lately I have had a flattop haircut and didn't like it at first.

      My boyfriend cut my hair when I had too much to drink !!

      But now I'm changing my mind !

      He is much, much (!) hornier now and that is a great plus !

      At first I hated to go to a barbershop to have it freshened up, but I admit that it makes me horny to sit there and have all these men gawking at me, while I get one of 'their' haircuts !

      I am now cosidering some tattoos. I have decided on what I want and also where. I want them visible, but still I hesitate...

      I guess one of these days...

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      My husband cut me a flattop. I hate it and he loves it.

      Sex is a lot better !!


    • emilybee profile image


      9 years ago

      I tried giving my boyfriend a flatop last night but he wasn't too impressed. Oh well, I tried. Nice hub.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      i think the flat topon one of the cast members in step up 3 is the best ive seen

    • BetsyIckes profile image


      11 years ago from Pennsylvania

      I know that I am getting older because baldheaded men look good to me LOL!

    • profile image

      how to increase vertical 

      11 years ago

      Very good stuff to be shared up! Nice Hub and good posts..

    • dineane profile image


      11 years ago from North Carolina

      I voted Grace, too...I love finding myself in the majority on the poll votes :-)

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      11 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      I picked Grace Jones. I love her hair :)

      Great hub.

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 

      11 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I chuckled when I saw Grace Jones was one of the poll options.

      Nicely done, Paul. I always thought they were called brush-cuts because that's what the boys in my grade one class called them.

    • Paul Edmondson profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Edmondson 

      11 years ago from Burlingame, CA

      The flat top hair cut is just a little more work than a buzz because of needing a little wax to get it to stand up perfectly. If you want super low maintenance, go with the buzz or burr haircut

    • rmr profile image


      11 years ago from Livonia, MI

      I wore a flat top for years. My wife said it made my head look like a thumb, though. I really miss that haircut. The ultimate in wash and wear.

    • Dottie1 profile image


      11 years ago from MA, USA

      I never looked at the flattop as a landing strip before! LOL

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      Too bad you don't show us your own flattop ;) Nice hub!

    • pcjunkychick profile image


      11 years ago from OKC

      I Luv it!

      Thanks for the link I will update mine & return the fav ;)

    • livelonger profile image

      Jason Menayan 

      11 years ago from San Francisco

      Add a little party to the back of a flat-top and you have a popular variant of the mullet. Great topic!

    • profile image 

      11 years ago from San Francisco, CA USA

      This is almost enough to make me go out and get a flattop . . . almost

    • Storytellersrus profile image


      11 years ago from Stepping past clutter

      LOL! This Hub is just plain fun! I have to vote for Forrest Gump- his is a flat top for the record books, haha.

    • Paul Edmondson profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Edmondson 

      11 years ago from Burlingame, CA

      It's Jack Nicholson, sorry about the typo, but I don't want to update it or I lose all the votes.

    • Passionatepurpose profile image


      11 years ago from T.X.

      I am going to check around and see if I can find some "Butch Wax". Ah yes, those were the days!

    • Paul Edmondson profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Edmondson 

      11 years ago from Burlingame, CA

      I'm a purest and have to go with Chris Mullen as the greatest flattop of all time. 

    • jimmythejock profile image

      Jimmy the jock 

      11 years ago from Scotland

      Nice one Paul, I got a round top being bald lol.....jimmy

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish MS 

      11 years ago from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation

      Interesting Hub and a great, fun poll to boot.

    • Ryan Hupfer profile image

      Ryan Hupfer 

      11 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      No brainer - Kid form Kid N Play gets my vote.

    • smallbizpro profile image


      11 years ago from Toronto, ON

      Hehe, takes me back to when I had a flat top - now I just go with the all-over #1 blade :)


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