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Buzz Cut Lengths [0 to 8] Explained With Pictures and Clipper Size



So, you’ve decided on a buzz cut and you’re at the barber’s shop now.

The hairstylist asks, ‘Which length of buzzcut do you want?’

Feeling a bit uncertain?

Don’t worry!

In this article, we’ll walk you through the different lengths of buzzcut together so you can confidently choose the perfect one that suits you.

What is Buzz Cut?

A buzz cut is a very short hairstyle that’s achieved by using electric clippers to cut the hair uniformly close to the scalp. It’s a simple and low-maintenance haircut where the length of the hair is generally very short and even all around the head.

In fact, the name “buzz cut” comes from the buzzing sound coming from the clippers during the haircutting process.

Key features of a buzz cut include:

  • Uniform Length: The hair is cut to an even length all around the head, creating a consistent and tidy look.
  • Low Maintenance: Buzz cuts are known for their simplicity and low maintenance. The short length requires minimal styling and grooming, making it a practical choice for those who prefer a fuss-free haircut.
  • Versatility: Despite its simplicity, a buzz cut is versatile and can be customized with variations such as tapered sides, fades, or textured tops. Different clipper guard lengths can also be used to achieve variations in the overall length.
  • Cool and Comfortable: The short length of a buzz cut makes it a popular choice in warmer climates, as it provides a cool and comfortable feel. It’s also a practical option for individuals involved in sports or activities that may lead to sweating.

Let’s get back to the point

The lengths of buzz cuts are commonly measured in guard sizes, ranging from 0 to 8 (and sometimes beyond).

Each guard corresponds to a specific length, with lower numbers resulting in shorter hair and higher numbers resulting in longer hair.

Here’s a table outlining common buzz cut lengths along with their corresponding clipper guard sizes:

Guard SizeLength (Inches)Length (Millimeters)Description
0Shaved0 mmBald or skin fade
11/83 mmVery short, minimal coverage
21/46 mmShort, neat, and tidy
33/810 mmSlightly longer, maintained look
41/213 mmVersatile, easy to maintain
55/816 mmNoticeably longer, increased styling
63/419 mmLonger buzz cut, more flexibility
77/822 mmSubstantial length, softer look
8125 mmTraditional and classic

Let’s discuss length size and their characteristics.

Number 0 Buzz cut (No Guard)

Also known as a bald or skin fade, a 0 guard leaves the hair extremely short, almost shaved to the skin. This length provides a clean and minimalist look, requiring frequent maintenance to keep the scalp consistently smooth.


Number 1 Buzz cut (1/8 inch)

With a 1 guard, the hair is left at approximately 1/8 inch in length. This length is still very short, offering a neat and tidy appearance while maintaining some texture on the scalp.


Number 2 Buzz cut (1/4 inch)

A number 2 guard results in a hair length of about 1/4 inch. This length is a bit longer than a number 1, providing slightly more coverage and texture on the scalp.


Number 3 Buzz cut (3/8 inch)

The number 3 guard leaves the hair at around 3/8 inch. This length is often chosen for those who prefer a slightly longer buzz cut while still maintaining a neat and groomed appearance.

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Number 4 Buzz cut (1/2 inch)

A number 4 guard leaves the hair at approximately 1/2 inch in length. This length allows for a bit more versatility and styling options while remaining relatively short and easy to maintain.


Number 5 Buzz cut (5/8 inch)

With a number 5 guard, the hair is left at about 5/8 inch. This length provides a noticeably longer look compared to shorter buzz cuts, giving individuals a bit more flexibility in styling.


Number 6 Buzz cut (3/4 inch)

The number 6 guard results in a hair length of around 3/4 inch. This length is suitable for those who want a slightly longer buzz cut while still maintaining a clean and well-groomed appearance.


Number 7 Buzz cut (7/8 inch)

A number 7 guard leaves the hair at approximately 7/8 inch. This length offers a more substantial amount of hair, allowing for increased styling possibilities and a softer appearance.

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Number 8 Buzz cut (1 inch)

The number 8 guard produces a hair length of about 1 inch. This length is among the longest options for a buzz cut, providing a more traditional and classic look.


FAQs about Buzzcut Lengths

What is the shortest buzz cut length, and how is it achieved?

The shortest buzz cut length is typically achieved using a clipper with no guard, often referred to as a “bald” or “shaved” cut. This results in an almost completely shaved look, leaving the scalp smooth.

Which buzz cut length is the easiest to maintain?

Shorter buzz cut lengths, such as a number 1 or number 2 guard, are generally the easiest to maintain. These lengths require minimal styling and frequent visits to the barber for upkeep.

Can I choose a specific buzz cut length based on my face shape?

Yes, the choice of buzz cut length can be influenced by face shape. For example, individuals with round faces might opt for slightly longer lengths to add dimension, while those with angular faces may choose shorter lengths for a clean and sharp look.

How often should I get a trim for my buzz cut?

The frequency depends on the desired length and personal preference. Shorter lengths may require more frequent trims to maintain a well-groomed appearance, while longer lengths can be maintained with less frequent visits to the barber.

Are there variations within each buzz cut length, or is it strictly one length all around?

While the primary characteristic of a buzz cut is uniform length, variations can be introduced, especially in terms of fades or tapering on the sides and back. These variations add texture and style while maintaining the overall buzz cut aesthetic.

Can a buzz cut be customized for specific facial features?

Absolutely! Barbers can tailor the buzz cut by adjusting the length and incorporating fades or tapering to highlight or soften specific facial features.

Which buzz cut lengths suit different face shapes?

Round Faces: Slightly longer buzz cuts (e.g., number 4 or 5) can complement round faces by adding vertical lines and reducing the roundness.

Square Faces: Shorter buzz cuts (e.g., number 1 or 2) emphasize the strong jawline associated with square faces.

Oval Faces: Oval faces are versatile and can suit various lengths, allowing for personal preference.

Heart-Shaped Faces: Medium-length buzz cuts (e.g., number 3 or 4) can balance the wider forehead and narrower chin.

Ian is a certified cosmetologist, hairstylist and coffee lover. He has been running his own salon for 10 years. If you're after the hottest looks straight from Hollywood, Ian's got the inside scoop.