An undercut is a unisex hairstyle in which the sides and back are cut short, leaving the hair on top long. If the hair on the sides and back is shaved to the scalp, leaving the top area long, it is known as an undershave. Within the general category of haircuts and hairstyles for men, the undercut is a flexible style that can be modified in a number of ways.
A well-known version of the undercut, bowl cuts have been a popular look for several decades. One especially memorable celebrity bowl cut was sported by Moe Howard of The Three Stooges. A variation of this style of undercut is the mop-top look, a slightly longer and shaggier version of the bowl cut. Mop-top undercuts have been worn by such celebrities as The Beatles, and are currently making a comeback among such stars as Zac Efron.
The undershave cut is a more extreme version of the undercut in which the sides and back of the head are shorn down to the scalp, leaving the hair long on top. Because of the stark contrast created by this look, undershaves are popular in punk and goth subcultures. They are also used by skaters and metalheads, who grow the hair on top past shoulder length and tie it back, leaving the sides and back completely shaved.
This undercut style is popular with women, but it is also worn by some men. As with all undercut styles, it involves very short hair on the sides and back, with longer hair on top. The difference is styling. Rather than leaving the hair to fall naturally, the bangs in front are swept down in front of the face or over the eyes. The hair in back is swept up and often styled into a teardrop shape.