The ultimate guide to your Manbun and Topknot questions
While here at ManBunHairstyle.net we cover everything on the man bun and the top knot, I do believe that having a specific Frequently Asked Questions page (i.e. FAQ) with all the answers needed for these hairstyles will be of use to many of you. This way, you can use the information on this page to supplement the rest of your reading on this site and be on your way to rocking an epic man bun!
As a barber, my mission here is to make this site the best-possible resource online on the man bun so that you can then have the knowledge to decide whether you want to join our legions of man bun dudes or not. It really is that simple.
Owning a barbershop and having a man bun myself, I have been asked pretty much all questions that you could think of when it comes to the man bun hairstyle. Since most guys have short hair, there is a transitional period lasting months that needs to be endured before earning the privilege of being able to tie your mane into a glorious man bun. Not all guys want to commit to this waiting period, and, of those who attempt to transition, many go under before getting to their man-bun destination and resort to cutting their hair short again as a sign of defeat. But, worry not, I’m here to help you get your man bun and keep it awesome for as long as you want to sport a bun on your head.
Are you ready? Then let’s go!
Table of contents
Click any linked question in the table of contents below to go to the actual question itself. This FAQ is the internet’s most-extensive manbun and topknot FAQ guide, so feel free to take your time to go through all of it and to open each of those linked questions below that interest you in a new browser tab.
- What is a man bun?
- What are some other names for the man bun?
- How do I get a man bun?
- What is the minimum hair length for a man bun?
- How long will it take me to get a man bun?
- What is a top knot hairstyle?
- What is a man bun undercut?
- So could I have a top knot undercut instead of a man bun undercut?
- Which are the best hair clippers to buy?
- What is a ponybun?
- Can I braid the hair on my head for my manbun?
- I have curly hair, can I still get a man bun?
- I’m a black male and the vast majority of dudes with buns that I see are white, will a man bun look good on me?
- I have a young son, can he wear a man bun too?
- Can I wear a man bun in the office or with a business suit?
- I’m an old dude, will I look OK with a man bun?
- Can I give my dog a man bun hairstyle?
- What hair products do I need for a man bun?
- Can I use hair accessories for my man bun?
- Is a man bun easy to maintain?
- I am balding, can I have a man bun?
- What is traction alopecia?
- So how do I avoid traction alopecia?
- Where does the bun go on the head?
- Can I grow a beard with my man bun?
- My girlfriend/wife is giving me crap for having a man bun, what should I do?
- How do I avoid women trying to touch my man bun?
- I still have more questions, how can I ask them?
What is a man bun?
A man bun is a hairstyle that involves the tying and placing of a bun on the head. The hair used to tie the man bun can be all the hair on the scalp or only a part of it.
What are some other names for the man bun?
In English-speaking countries, the man bun can go by the following names:
- Bro bun
- Dude bun
- Hipster bun
- Top knot
- Bro knot
- Kid bun
With regards to the spelling of the word “man bun”, it can be spelled alternatively as “manbun” or “man-bun”.
How do I get a man bun?
If you want to know how to get a man bun then go through this site and read all the guides that I’ve published here. Yeah, I’m aware that this is not the answer that you were looking for, but you’ve pretty much asked me the golden-eggs question.
I’ll put it bluntly: if you want to get a man bun, all you will need is patience to grow your hair long. Once your hair is long enough to tie it into a man bun, the rest of the stuff concerning its styling is so easy that you’ll be spending less than a minute per day to get your man bun rocking like you mean it!
What is the minimum hair length for a man bun?
Depending on the type of bun that you want to get, you will need a specific minimum hair length to get a man bun.
If all that you want to do is to just tie the hair on the top of your head while the sides and back of the head remain short and untied, then you will need at least 6 inches of hair length to tie a man bun. Such a type of man bun is what I call a “semi” man bun.
If you’d like to tie all of your hair (sides and back included) instead of just tying the hair on the top of your head, then you will need at least 10 inches of hair length. Such a type of man bun is what I call a “full” man bun.
How long will it take me to get a man bun?
The time that it will take you to have enough hair length to grow a man bun will depend on how long your hair is to begin with. With that said, you will be growing your hair to a long length in order to wear a man bun; there’s no escaping this, my friend. You will become one of us: a long-haired dude (with a die-hard manbun ambition to boot!).
A neat trick to work out how many months you will need to get a man bun is to measure your current hair length, subtract your current length from the minimum length of your desired type of man bun (6 inches for semi bun and 10 inches for full bun) and then multiply the result by two.
So, if you’d like to have a full man bun but your hair is only 2 inches long, you’d then subtract 2 from 10 (i.e. the minimum length for a full manbun) and multiply the result of your subtraction (i.e. “eight” in this case) by two. Thus if you have 2 inches of current hair length, it will take you 16 months to be able to achieve a full man bun.
The credit for this trick goes to Rogelio Samson, a famous men’s hair blogger and owner of ManlyCurls.com who published this trick along with other hairstyle tricks in his two books, “The Curly Hair Book” and “The Men’s Hair Book”. I had been using a different method to estimate hair-growing times for our customers for many years already, but I was pleasantly surprised to learn of his method (considering that he actually pioneered hair profiling for men) and I believe that this simple method/trick from Rogelio is the best for regular guys who simply need to quickly know how long they will have to wait to get a man bun.
What is a top knot hairstyle?
A top knot hairstyle is a semi man bun. The hair is kept between 6 to 8 inches long (not any longer) while the hair on the sides and back of the head are kept buzzed with a hair clipper in different types of buzz cuts.
What is a man bun undercut?
A man bun undercut is a semi man bun that has the hair on the sides and back of the head in an undercut haircut. A man bun undercut typically has the hair on the top of the head longer than eight inches while the sides and back of the head are clipped with the shortest hair clipper length available.
Giving yourself an undercut for your man bun is extremely easy as long as you have with you a good hair clipper that is powerful enough to buzz through long hair. You don’t need to visit a barbershop either to keep your man bun undercut in check, as trimming your undercut is also very easy with a good hair clipper. To trim the long hair on the top, just use scissors (if possible, use barber scissors that you can buy online for a cheap price).
Alternatively, you can shave your man bun undercut for what I call a “man bun undershave” hairstyle. It looks pretty much the same as a man bun undercut, only that the man bun undershave will show no buzzed hair at all on the sides and back of your head; you’ll be left with skin only, which we call white-walls in barbershop jargon.
The shaved sides and back of the head make the undershave an extreme haircut, so I strongly recommend that you think twice about getting a man bun undershave since most jobs will not tolerate a partially-shaved head with long hair. Heck, most jobs won’t even tolerate long hair on its own, so make sure that you can get this type of shaved hairstyle by first asking the human resources department at your company or by asking your boss.
So could I have a top knot undercut instead of a man bun undercut?
Absolutely, just make sure that the hair on the top of your head (to be tied as a topknot) is between 6 to 8 inches, and not any longer than 8 inches (as otherwise you will have a man bun undercut and not a top knot undercut!).
The actual undercut haircut in the top knot undercut is kept at the same length as a man bun undercut. Again, just make sure that you have a high-quality hair clipper with you that won’t give you problems when buzzing your undercut every couple of weeks to keep it in check.
For the record, both the manbun and topknot undercuts are to be buzzed with any hair clipper length that you like the most. However, the aesthetics of a manbun undercut or of a topknot undercut are better with the shorter hair clipper lengths (e.g. a #2 hair clipper length goes great for the undercut).
Which are the best hair clippers to buy?
Having a hair clipper at home is, by far, one of the best investments that you can make when it comes to personal grooming and especially for your man bun haircuts. The issue with most hair clippers nowadays is that they’re just utter garbage. They will overheat within minutes of buzzing your hair and they will break after some months of regular use.
For either the man bun undercut or the top knot undercut, a hair clipper is just an essential male grooming tool to own. Even the expensive hair clippers will save you money over the long term as you will not need to go to a barbershop to keep your man bun undercut buzzed and in check. Instead of having to drive down to the barbershop to pay 20 bucks for a simple undercut haircut, you could give yourself that same undercut haircut in under five minutes with your own high-quality hair clipper.
Considering that you need to buzz your undercut haircut every two weeks to keep it in check, that’s a lot of money that you will be saving after a year of using your own hair clipper.
All of the above is why I strongly recommend that you invest in a high-quality hair clipper. I’m a big fan of the Oster hair clippers and of the Andis hair clippers. I actually recommend them in my hair products guide for the man bun, which you can find at the top of this page (in the menu bar); I will also talk a little bit more about my hair products guide further down in this FAQs page. As a barber, I find that the Oster hair clippers are great as corded clippers while the Andis hair clippers are great as cordless hair clippers.
An excellent online resource for advice on hair clippers is the Men’s Hair Forum, which is the biggest male grooming website on the internet. The Men’s Hair Forum is full of experienced barbers and hairdressers and they have a very useful discussion on the best hair clippers for men to buy with the listed hair clippers which are recommended by the expert forum’s barbers and hairdressers for guys who simply want a great hair clipper that will last them many years. The barbers and hairdressers in the Men’s Hair Forum do also seem to have a preference for the Oster and Andis hair clippers, and I’ve yet to meet a barber in all my years in the profession who didn’t love at least one of these two hair clipper brands. I’ve tried many hair clippers over the years, but the ones from these two brands are just the best hair clippers. No contest!
So, if you’re serious about buying a hair clipper for your man bun undercut or for any other haircut that you may want to get in the future, then read my hair products guide and head over to the linked discussion on hair clippers from the Men’s Hair Forum. If the recommended Oster and Andis hair clippers are too expensive for you, then get a good hair clipper from either Wahl or Panasonic as they both offer good-value hair clippers.
What is a ponybun?
A ponybun is one of the 7 types of man bun hairstyles and it is essentially a half-bun hairstyle. In the ponybun, some of the hair in the bun is left to dangle (as with a ponytail) instead of being choked into the bun with the rest of the tied hair.
The ponybun has been a hairstyle used by women for centuries, and long haired men have also used this hairstyle for just as long (you know… bun hairstyles for men existed before the man bun trend). A dude who rocked the ponybun hairstyle like a boss was Jared Leto during the early part of 2014. It’s a shame that Jared Leto then chopped his long hair off a year later, only to repent 15 minutes later.
Can I braid the hair on my head for my manbun?
Yes, and, when done right, it looks awesome and gives you a pseudo Ragnar Lodbrok look. Just make sure that you get your hair braided by someone who knows how to do it; usually long-haired women are the best at braiding hair, so reach out to any woman you may know who has her hair down to at least chest length.
I have curly hair, can I still get a man bun?
Absolutely! You can rock a man bun irrespective of your hair type. So long as you grow your mane to the minimum hair length needed for a man bun, you’ll be ready to rock it like there’s no tomorrow.
I’m a black male and the vast majority of dudes with buns that I see are white, will a man bun look good on me?
Yes, the reason for not seeing a lot of black men with man buns is because most black guys prefer to not grow their hair long. Afro textured hair, which is the most-common hair type for black men, can sometimes be difficult and inconvenient to look after when it is long; thus, the most popular type of haircut for black males is a short haircut.
That said, more and more black men are growing their hair to wear manbuns, and we’re seeing this at our barbershop too.
I have a young son, can he wear a man bun too?
Yes, in fact, with kids it’s easier to tie a man bun since you need less hair length as the head of a kid is remarkably smaller than that of an adult. We frequently have our barbershop customers bring their kids over to the barbershop sporting epic “kid buns”.
Can I wear a man bun in the office or with a business suit?
Man buns go great with business suits, and the ladies in the office will be gossiping about how hot you look with your suit and bun. However, most guys in the office won’t like this, and most certainly your boss will not share your passion for the “mun”. So, before growing your hair long to then turn up to the office one day with a Jared-Leto-like man bun, make sure that you ask your boss first (the same advice applies to the man-bun undershave hairstyle as explained earlier).
I’m an old dude, will I look OK with a man bun?
So long as you have plenty of hair atop your head, a man bun will look epically awesome on you and regardless of your old age. The key component here is how much hair you have, not your age. If you’re over the age of 50 and people have told you in the past how lucky you are to have so much hair for your age, then you’re certainly ready to rock a man bun.
Can I give my dog a man bun hairstyle?
Yes, but please, do not tie his ears as part of the bun. It may look funny to you, but you can damage the cartilage in the dog’s ears. Only use the dog’s own head hair. Or give the dog a wig and entertain yourself giving your dog all kinds of hairstyles that you would not try on your own hair.
What hair products do I need for a man bun?
The man bun is a very simple hairstyle requiring one single hair product: a hair elastic. Not all hair elastics will do, however, and it’s imperative that you use a metal-free elastic to tie your man bun as you otherwise run the risk of damaging your hair and bun.
Other hair products that are useful for the man bun (but which are not essential) include a conditioner, a styling cream and a leave-in conditioner. I’ve published the following hair products guide for the man bun in which I go through each hair product that will enhance and improve your man bun hairstyle. But, remember, the only hair product that you really need for a man bun is a hair elastic!
Can I use hair accessories for my man bun?
You can use anything that you want on your man bun and that includes hair accessories. From elastic headbands to hair clips to hard Alice bands, the sky is the limit for your dude bun.
Is a man bun easy to maintain?
As with all long hairstyles for men, you need to be a bit more careful with your hair. Remember, having a man bun means that you have long hair, and long hair in men needs to be treated with more care than short hair or medium length hair.
The best product to take care of your hair is a good conditioner. This is because the main problem that you will face with your man bun is the daily tangling of your locks. By using a hair conditioner, you will keep your hair locks well lubricated, which will not only prevent your hair from tangling but will also make your hair glossier (in a manly way).
Have a look at my hair products guide linked above to know more about hair conditioners for your man bun and get the one that I recommend.
I am balding, can I have a man bun?
The short answer is “no”; the long answer is “maybe”.
If you’re balding, your hair follicles are weakening progressively and they are producing less of the material that makes up your hair. Weaker follicles means easier-to-rip hair strands, so tying your hair into a man bun is the perfect recipe for losing more hair strands than you’re already losing with your hair loss alone.
Male pattern baldness (i.e. male hair loss or androgenetic alopecia) usually starts at the forehead’s hairline, which is why most balding men have a receded hairline. Unfortunately, the most tension placed on your hair with a man bun is at the forelock, which is the area of the scalp that surrounds your forehead’s hairline. What this means is that, by tying a man bun if you’re balding, you will accelerate your hair loss and even cause your hairline to look asymmetric and awkward as the weakened hair follicles let go of the hair strands from the tension applied by the man bun.
At the end of the day, it’s your choice. If your male pattern baldness is being treated effectively and you’re tying your hair loosely into the bun, you could still get away with rocking a man bun with male pattern baldness.
For the record, the above advice on balding and getting a man bun does also apply for any other type of tied hairstyle (e.g. ponytails or ponybuns). Avoid excessive hair tension and hair pulling at all costs if you’re balding!
What is traction alopecia?
Traction alopecia is a nasty type of hair loss that is caused by pulling the hair too hard for too long. Traction alopecia used to be an issue for women only until not that long ago when the man bun became popular. Traction alopecia occurs primarily at the forehead’s hairline and results in an uneven and receded hairline that completely breaks the aesthetics of a man bun (and of any other men’s hairstyle, for that matter).
I’ve lost count of how many guys we’ve had coming to our barbershop with traction alopecia from their man buns. The worst thing is that traction alopecia can become irreversible if the hair follicles are damaged beyond repair, which is rare but still does happen in men.
So how do I avoid traction alopecia?
By never tying your hair too tight! If you feel a strong localized pressure on the skin of your forehead, you’ve tied your man bun too tight. Always release some pressure from the manbun by slightly pulling the hair softly against the direction of the man bun. If your hair strands look like guitar strings when tied in a man bun, your hair is too tight; you want to instead leave your man-bun hair a little bit loose without breaking the aesthetics of the hairstyle.
Be aware that traction alopecia is more common with the topknot hairstyle. This is because the minimum hair length for the topknot (6 inches) will lead you to pulling your hair hard to be able to get all the hair on the top of the head tied into the bun. So, to be safe, only tie a topknot when your hair is 8 inches long, especially if you have a big head.
Where does the bun go on the head?
You can place the bun wherever you want on your head. However, the actual man bun trend was started by placing the bun on the crown area of the head, which is also known as the vertex.
As the man bun trend has become more and more popular, men have been placing their buns higher, lower and even sideways on their head. Ultimately, it is up to you where on your head you want to place your manbun.
Can I grow a beard with my man bun?
Yes, you can wear all kinds of facial hair styles with your man bun. A full beard style is quite common with hipsters, and they will grow their beards to a medium length while also growing their hair even longer so as to sport a big man bun with a thick beard. Such a look is what I’ve termed the hipster bun and is one that looks quite good despite the inherent shagginess of the style.
Other than growing a full beard with your manbun, you’re pretty much free to grow any other kind of facial hair style to complement your bro bun.
My girlfriend/wife is giving me crap for having a man bun and wants it chopped off, what should I do?
Break up with her or divorce her. How dare she suggest that you commit the ultimate act of sacrilege?
Listen, son, only surround yourself with those who share your passion for the “big hair” lifestyle. It’s that simple.
How do I avoid women trying to touch my man bun?
While it may sound crazy to you right now if you don’t have a manbun just yet, I can guarantee you in this very moment that, once you have your man bun, women will jump on you to touch it (no, not the stuff “down there”; I’m talking of the stuff “up there” on your head).
Other than having ninja reflexes, the best deterrent to stopping a woman from touching your precious bun is by telling her that you give her permission to touch your man bun if she gives you permission to touch her nipples. Be careful with this move, though, as you will be surprised with how many women will agree to this pact, so choose your women wisely, especially when under the influence of alcohol!
I still have more questions, how can I ask them?
You can ask any questions by using the comments section below. This FAQ page is expanding as we go along, so I welcome any specific questions that you may have and which have not yet been covered in this FAQs page.
As always, gentlemen, keep rocking those “buns”!
Article last updated: 1st September 2015