Congrats: You’ve made the decision to chop off your hair. Yes, pulling the trigger can be scary (especially if your hair grows painfully slow) — but a fresh cut is perhaps one of the most exhilarating feelings ever. Now that your appointment is locked in, you’ll need to arrive with a few images to show your stylist. Not exactly sure what direction to go in? Consider a short layered haircut. According to the pros, layers have never been so cool.
Of course, short layered hair can mean a slew of different things. There’s the iconic pixie cut — but, these days it’s not just any pixie. From the “bixie” (aka, a pixie bob-hybrid) to modern iterations, the style is more versatile than perhaps ever before. Or if you’re a fan of a bob, there are various lengths you can ask for (see: a cool lob). Ultimately, there are tons of on-trend looks you can test drive this season, many of which already have the celebrity set’s stamp of approval.
For some expert help, TZR chatted with the industry’s top hairstylists to get their suggestions on short layered haircut ideas. Below, find the 11 looks these pros are loving right now. Plus, some of their go-to hair products to style them.
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Curly Wolf Cut
Wolf cuts, the hybrid mullet and shag trend, rose to fame last year, but continues to gain popularity this winter and beyond. The cut consists of separated layers that blend into a shaggy mullet on the sides, and even looks incredible with added color. For type 3 and 4 waves and spirals, it’s a good idea to spritz hair with a curl refresh spray in-between washes to keep the look bright and vibrant.
The octopus haircut, a next-gen version of the wolf cut, utilizes short layers on top with a longer length towards the bottom. Here, layers have a concave essence on top and more of a disconnected look, keeping it from over-bulking. And luckily, it’s extremely low maintenance, especially on thick, textured hair. For daily styling, you can air dry hair or touch up waves and curls with a curling iron for more definition and volume.
Long, straight hair is typically the first thought when you think about layers, but choppy layers don’t discriminate against texture and can add some serious depth to curls. And since movement and texture is in for winter cuts, there’s no better way to usher in the new season that with a layered and choppy afro. The afro, which stands great on its own, is emphasized with confident and edgy layers worked in. Be sure to have a sheen or gloss spray on hand to maintain a salon-worthy shine.
Ted Gibson, a celebrity hairstylist whose clients include Jaime King and Lily Collins, is loving the overlay haircut for those with short hair. “What's cool about this haircut is its versatility,” he tells TZR. “You can wear it with a bang or wear it with a side part tucked at the ear.” Check out the video above where King is sporting the trendy cut.
Jackson Simmonds, an advanced stylist at Julien Farel, says a lob with high layers to balance the weight and can be worn curly, is big right now. “This look is equal parts throwback and future-facing — something about embracing yourself just as you are is very of-the-moment!”
Don’t be afraid to go short, too. In fact, Bobby Eliot, a celebrity hairstylist whose client roster includes Amanda Seyfried and Julia Garner, is seeing a lot of layered bobs these days. “Think French Amélie vibe,” he tells TZR. The expert says for this particular cut, the layers hit the cheekbone and create different textures. “The perfect wash-and-go haircut!”
“Curtain bangs with short, layered hair is definitely a trending cut right now,” Laura Polko, a celebrity hairstylist who works with Gigi Hadid and Sydney Sweeney, tells TZR. “I love this look because it gives a lot of flexibility when styling and looks great when hair is worn curly or straight.”
If regular straight bangs are more your speed, celebrity hairstylist and brand founder Lee Stafford confirms a traditional style is also popular right now. “Bangs alongside a choppy, layered lob is truly on-trend this winter season and I am totally here for it,” the expert says. “Bangs and layered front pieces frame the face beautifully, especially when the hair has been waved.”
“M.C. Huff came to me to cut her hair short because she was getting ready to start a film,” Gibson explains. The expert loves to help his artist clients come up with a hairstyle for whatever character roles they’re taking. “Pixie is what I thought would work [here],” he says. “But making sure the hair had texture and more of a matte-shiny finish. So STARRING Shooting Star Texture Meringue came into the picture.” If you’re game for a big transformation this winter, this haircut is the way to go.
Lots Of Shags
Kim Kimble, a celebrity hairstylist who works with Zendaya and Kerry Washington, has recently been noticing shaggy looks for short hair. “I’ve seen it three ways — the wolf cut, a traditional ‘70s shag cut, and the mullet,” the expert tells TZR. “Both the wolf cut and ‘70s cut frame the face really nicely.” As for the mullet, Kimble says the edgy hairstyle came back into trend over the past year, and it looks like it’s sticking around for a while. “I see mullets on men and women, [as well as] celebrities and everyday clients. I think it’s a fun trend when done right!”
Hairline Layered Bob
Kelly Macedo, a hairstylist and owner of Interior Hair in Los Angeles, is currently obsessed with model Freja Beha's ‘90s Leo-esque layered chop. “It gives all the texture and perfectly undone movement for a low maintenance girl,” she tells TZR. “I feel like this is such a fresh way to go shorter, steering away a bit from the super-sleek straight bob. It's refreshing to see a slightly different shape.”
Rachel From Friends
According to Polko, the sought-after Rachel Green haircut from the early seasons of Friends is definitely making a comeback. “This style is fun and voluminous, especially when hair is turned under at the end, which is another trend I’m seeing,” the hairstylist says. “To style this look, work in the Aquage Uplifting Foam and blow hair out with a big round brush. Quick and easy!”
Aloxxi Artist Sam LaBella says the “bixie” — aka, part bob, part pixie — is having a huge moment. “This look gives me the Meg Ryan circa ‘90s vibes,” she tells TZR. “Tapered at the nape and razor textured in the front makes this super playful and ultra sexy.”
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