What is the best haircut for a poodle? A Guide to the Best Cuts

Poodles are renowned for their elegant and stylish appearance, and their distinctive curly coats provide the perfect canvas for creative grooming. 

However, choosing the best haircut for your poodle can be a daunting task. With a variety of options available, it’s important to consider factors such as your poodle’s size, lifestyle, and coat type. 

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the top poodle haircuts, their characteristics, and which styles suit different poodle sizes and temperaments. 

Whether you’re a first-time poodle owner or a seasoned enthusiast, this article will help you make an informed decision about the ideal haircut for your beloved furry friend.

The Standard Poodle Haircuts

Standard poodles are the largest of the three recognized poodle sizes and are known for their regal appearance and intelligence. When it comes to grooming, standard poodles offer a wide range of options. Some popular standard poodle haircuts include:

The Continental Clip: This iconic poodle cut features shaved hindquarters, pompoms on the legs and tail, and a full, rounded coat on the chest, head, and neck. 

The Continental Clip requires regular maintenance but is often chosen for its elegance and showmanship.

The English Saddle Clip: This cut is similar to the Continental Clip but has a longer coat on the back, resembling a saddle. The legs are typically shaved with pompoms, and the chest, head, and neck have a full coat. The English Saddle Clip offers a balanced and sophisticated look.

The Sporting Clip: Also known as the retriever clip, this cut is popular among active standard poodles. The entire coat is trimmed to a uniform length, giving the poodle a sleek and athletic appearance. 

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The Sporting Clip requires less maintenance and is suitable for poodles that engage in outdoor activities.

The Miniature Poodle Haircuts

Miniature poodles are smaller in size but share the same elegance and intelligence as their standard counterparts. Their versatile coats offer various styling options, including:

The Puppy Clip: This charming cut involves leaving the coat at a uniform length all over the body, creating an adorable puppy-like appearance. The ears, face, and tail are neatly trimmed. The Puppy Clip is low-maintenance and suits miniature poodles of all ages.

The Teddy Bear Clip: As the name suggests, this cut gives the poodle a teddy bear-like appearance. The coat is left longer all over the body, including the face and tail. 

This style requires regular brushing to prevent matting but provides a cute and cuddly look.

The Modified Continental Clip: Similar to the Continental Clip for standard poodles, the Modified Continental Clip features shaved hindquarters, pompoms on the legs and tail, and a fuller coat on the head, chest, and neck. 

The main difference is that the body is clipped shorter, making it a practical choice for miniature poodles.

The Toy Poodle Haircuts

Toy poodles are the smallest of the poodle sizes, known for their intelligence and compact size. Despite their tiny stature, toy poodles have a wide range of haircut options:

The Lamb Clip: This style is characterized by leaving the hair longer all over the body, resembling the soft curls of a lamb. The ears, face, and tail are trimmed neatly. The Lamb Clip exudes an endearing and fluffy appearance.

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The Bikini Clip: Ideal for warmer climates, the Bikini Clip involves shaving the belly, groin, and part of the hindquarters, while leaving the rest of the coat longer. This clip keeps toy poodles cool while still maintaining a stylish appearance.

The Topknot Clip: This haircut emphasizes a long, luxurious topknot on the head, while the rest of the body is trimmed short. The Topknot Clip showcases the toy poodle’s beautiful face and gives a sophisticated look.


Choosing the best haircut for your poodle involves considering factors such as the size, lifestyle, and coat type of your furry friend. The standard, miniature, and toy poodle sizes each have their own unique styling options, ranging from elegant and elaborate cuts to more practical and low-maintenance styles. 

It is important to consult with a professional groomer who specializes in poodle grooming to ensure that the chosen haircut suits your poodle’s individual needs and enhances their natural beauty. 

Regular grooming and maintenance are crucial to keep your poodle’s coat healthy and mat-free. Ultimately, the perfect haircut for your poodle is the one that makes them feel comfortable, confident, and loved while showcasing their distinct poodle charm.