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23 Excellent Rat Tail Hairstyles: Full Guide & Tips

What Is It

The Rat Tail hairstyle is a trendy style today, which is why more and more people are getting interested in wearing it. This style requires you to grow a part of your hair on the scalp’s backside and right beneath your crown. It got its name because of the way it looks.

The style truly has an eerie resemblance to an actual rat’s Tail. Many also consider the rat tail hairstyle as a great mullet alternative. The rat tail first became popular during the 80s and made a decent return at present.

This is a prominent hairstyle that many love to wear now, proof that 80’s hairstyles for men are still on-trend.

23 Most Popular Rat Tail Hairstyles

Long Braided

The long-braided rat-tail hairstyle is ideal if you are patient and determined enough to care for and maintain it. You have to be patient and committed to this style as it requires plenty of time and effort to maintain. Despite being high-maintenance, it is worth it as it will make you feel confident, especially once you start receiving praises.

It is also possible for you to add some twists to this braid style, provided you are adept in braiding. For instance, from the usual braid composed of three strands, you can form a fishtail braid. The long-braided version of the rat tail also requires regular visits to your barber to ensure that the style stays neat and has high contrast.

Dyed Design

It’s also a great idea to make your rat-tail hairstyle more attractive and exciting by adding a dyed design. Make sure, though, that you have an excellent guide to using hair dyes so you won’t have bad results. Also, note that unprofessional hairstyles leave a bad impression, so ensure that your chosen color and design are acceptable, especially if you are working in an office.

If you love bright colors, you can choose to dye your hair using a bright shade, like yellow. Add a hair design to it, too, so the result will have more impact. You may also choose to dye the tips using your preferred color, one that brightens up your entire look without coloring your hair.

Curly Top With Braided Tail

Are you naturally curly? Then rest assured that a rat-tail style works for you – one of which is the curly top with a braided tail. One advantage of the rat tail is that it is suitable for all hair types. If your locks are naturally curly, style them so that you leave the topmost part with more hair. This will let you display your nice curly hair texture. After that, you can complement the curly top with the braided rat tail.

Short Tail

Go for the short rat tail if you are someone who does not wait for a long time to make your hair grow. DHT blockers are effective against hair loss but even if you are dealing with hair thinning and loss, take note that you can still rock the rat tail hairstyle. Yes, the tail needs to be long, but the length should be just enough to make it look amazing against your remaining hair.

This means you can still go for the short tail. All you have to do is to make your hair grow at least two times as long as your remaining hair. This should give you sufficient length for the tail. Tying your hair to form a ponytail or braiding it is unnecessary. You can leave your hair loose.

Long Straight Tail

Wearing a long straight tail is also a great idea. Again, there is no need for you to braid the tail if you are not so fond of the braids. You can have a long straight tail, a style that looks as great as the braided version of the rat tail.

Striped Mohawk

The striped mohawk is perfect if you are one of those daring, trendy, and brave men who dare to rock a unique hairstyle. What’s great about this style is that it guarantees it will earn you praises. People will admire your gut for wearing this bold and eye-catching style.

Asian Top Knot With Rat Tail

You can combine the top knot and rat tail if you search for a great-looking Asian hairstyle. The reason is that the two styles seem to work well together. Expect the combination to give you a more masculine and solid appearance.

It is also a good choice if you wish to wear a man bun while doing something unique and unusual to the style. This style is even more impressive because it quickly and flawlessly adapts to your environment. You can also make this style more interesting by wearing it with your beard.

Afro Twists

If you like sporting Afro locks, note that you can also integrate the rat tail hairstyle. What’s great about doing so is that your thick and kinky hair will ensure that the style will look more defined while showcasing more dimensions.

The fact that Afro hair is strong and resilient is also good as it means you can effortlessly braid it. It is even possible for you to add a fade or taper on the sides. Moreover, you can choose to incorporate some original patterns or designs into it. With the Afro twists, sporting the best and ideal shaved sides hairstyles for you is incredibly possible.

Long Twisted Tail

Aside from braids, you can choose to sport the rat tail hairstyle in another way. For instance, you can go for the long-twisted tail, which, as the name suggests, requires you to twist your hair. The result would be attractive, attention-grabbing, and unique.

Crew Cut With Tail

You can also bring an edgier look through the crew cut with a tail hairstyle. It will showcase a confused yet impressive look as you will notice a separation between a shaved bottom half and a crew cut found atop your head. With the help of the rat tail, it is possible to fill in a boring and plain space at the back. This can bring your hairstyle to a new level.

Faux Tail

In this style, you will realize that a faux hawk is one of those styles that work well with the rat tail. This haircut also takes pride in its silky nature and matte presence, making it so popular with many people. You can elevate the faux hawk haircut by adding a rat tail to show off your hair’s length. You can also add fun and playfulness to your look by dyeing it with a platinum blonde shade.

Subtle Rat Tail

I’m sure this style is pretty simple, considering it is named the subtle rat tail. It is a simple version of the famous rat tail, making it a good choice for many people. To sport the subtle rat tail, you have to pair up your rat tail with a buzz cut or any other casual haircut. After that, tie it into a braid to create a more sophisticated look.

Hair Island

The classic rat tail may require you to leave it long and low at your back but take note that it is not necessarily the case all the time. You can choose to move the tail across your entire head. For instance, you can take it a bit higher to go towards your crown, which is what the attractive hair island style is all about.

Yes, it makes your rat tail the focus, but you can further emphasize it by pairing it up with a fade or taper at either the sides or the back. Another way to give an exciting twist to this style is to wear an undercut rat tail hairstyle. This is a great way to provide an ultimate contrast to your style.


The gradient rat-tail hairstyle is perfect for you if you want your look to have a low-key front and a uniquely crazy style at the back. In that case, having your rat tail dyed into a gradient would be a great idea. The gradient also has to transition from the natural color of your hair to an edge that holds a lighter shade.

Dutch Braid

The Dutch braid is also an exciting hairstyle to try if you want to grow out your rat tail anywhere. One way to pull off this style is to ensure that you make the hair intended for the rat tail even more stylish by making it into a Dutch braid. The braid also has to be along the side of your head.

Rat Tail Trio

The rat tail trio is also a hairstyle that will turn heads and leave a good impression. Ensure that you have the best balding clippers for smooth head-shaving if you prefer to sport this style. You can shave your head to have enough room to style your hair creatively.

It can even provide you with a space for tattoos. A shaved head is also a good choice if you like to have a minimalist look, but you can make this style more unique by adding three small rat tails. This can make your look even more distinguishable.

Loose Rat Tail

The loose rat tail allows you to style your head’s crown with a crew cut. If your hair has a longer front base, form a man bun by piling the hair atop your head. This is the key to keeping your rat tail separate and independent from the remaining style.

Layered Hair With Braided Tail

If you want your hair to have some nice touch while still looking neat, have it layered, then pair it up with a braided tail. By wearing layered hair with a braided tail, you can surely attract the attention of those around you and turn heads as you continue to leave a positive impression.

V-shaped Buzz Cut With Tail

You can also style your hair to demonstrate a particular shape, design, or pattern. In this case, why not try the V-shaped buzz cut and pair it up with a tail? As the name suggests, you can style your hair with a V and incorporate a rat tail at the bottom. This style is like those Viking hairstyles known for being bold and brave.

One Side Tail

The rat tail does not have to be strictly at the back. You can grow and style it anywhere you want. For instance, you can choose the one-side tail. You can often sport this by placing the longer piece behind your ear. The one-side tail looks excellent, especially if you braid it. You can choose a regular haircut for your remaining hair composed of a higher top and shorter side.

Fishtail Braid

If you love to fish, you can show your fondness and appreciation for them with an exciting and attractive fishtail braid. You can even have this style with a few vibrant and beautiful colors at the back. It is an excellent rat-tail hairstyle to bring out your bright and cheerful personality.

Bowl Cut With Tail

Another unique hairstyle combination is the bowl cut and the rat tail. It can leave a powerful impression as the rat tail and bowl cut to complement each other well. Own the uniqueness of your personality and this style by adding colors to the combination.

Make sure, though, that the colors you pick are those that blend well together so the entire style will glow effortlessly. For instance, you can color your bowl cut hot pink while keeping your rat tail subtle along the side. It should also be perfectly parallel to your sideburns to make it even nicer to look at.

Hair Art

Temple fade hairstyles are a bold choice; the same goes for the hair art you may decide to add to your rat tail hairstyle. Making hair art a part of your overall hairstyle can leave an impression on your brave and creative personality. For instance, you can cut a mohawk shaped like a rat on your hair. Your hair at the back must stay long enough, allowing you to use it for your rat tail.

How to Get 

Step 1 – Let your hair grow 

Let your hair grow longer than the typical length. It should be long enough upon braiding your hair for the rat tail. The actual length will become shorter. Allow extra length for this.

Step 2 – Trim short, except for the part close to the neck

Once you think your hair already has the needed length for the rat-tail hairstyle, you can trim your entire hair short while leaving a narrow part intact close to your neck. This is what you will be using to form the rat tail.

Step 3 –  Style

 Experiment when it comes to styling. For instance, you can have the sides tapered or faded or form an undercut while you tie or braid the long strand that remains loose.

Step 4 – Continue growing

Continue making your rat tail grow while keeping your remaining hair short through constant trimming and cutting.

How to Maintain 

Step 1 – Condition

Use premium conditioner for men. Along with regular shampooing, you also need to condition your hair. This ensures that it will always be ready for whatever trendy style you intend it to hold aside from the rat tail.

Step 2 – Integrate some variety

You can do that by adding some curls to your rat tail. It is possible to do this on your own. Just curl your hair several times around a pencil, then apply some holding gel. You will notice slight curls in your hair upon taking out the pencil.

Step 3 – Trim and cut regularly

While you must let your rat tail grow continuously, the remaining hair should be properly maintained and kept short through regular trimming.

Step 4 – Use hair tonics

Use hair tonics regularly. This hair product refers to a liquid hair moisturizer. You need it to keep your rat tail and entire hair well-moisturized and adequately nourished. Hair tonics are also beneficial as they prevent oils from weighing your hair down, which other waxes, gels, and styling creams do.


What causes my hair to grow into a rat tail?

Your hair won’t be able to grow the rat tail hairstyle naturally. Note, though, that for those with stringy hair, there is a tendency for the growth to look like a rat tail. The reason is the hair’s lack of volume and tendency to stick together. In that case, your hair is most likely oily.

Are rat tails unprofessional?

While the rat tails are not the usual type of hair you wear in professional settings, they are still not entirely unprofessional. Also, there are different ways to sport the rat tail. This means you can choose a style that suits the professional setting and is allowed in your office. You can also tame some rat tail hairstyles to make them look cleaner and more professional.

How long should I wait to grow the rat tail?

The answer is case-to-case since it will be based on your desired length for the rat tail. In most cases, though, the hair grows a one-half inch every month. You may have to wait a few months before detecting and seeing a rat tail.

Who invented the rat tail hairstyle?

The rat tail hairstyle started during the 80s as part of mainstream culture. It started from the Australians and New Zealanders, particularly those who were part of the youth. The rat tail also became popular in pop culture. The reason is that the Star Wars franchise showed Jedis sporting the rat tail, also called the Padawan braid at that time.

What is the longest rat tail haircut?

The longest rat tail haircut was around 54 cm long. It was worn by a 7-year-old kid who spent five years growing the tail successfully.


With the rat tail hairstyle becoming a trend again, it is a great idea to try it. What’s great about this cut is that it suits all types of skin or complexion and hair. It also has a wide range of excellent and trendy variations, giving you the freedom to pick one that suits you the most and makes you look your best.

The post 23 Excellent Rat Tail Hairstyles: Full Guide & Tips appeared first on Beardoholic.

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23 Excellent Rat Tail Hairstyles: Full Guide & Tips


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