It’s a shag! It’s a mullet! It’s an unkempt grow-out! The answer is actually D: All of the above. Born in 2021 and a TikTok darling since, the wolf cut is the sort of hairstyle that oozes irreverence, as if the wearer, whilst channeling their inner rock star, began hacking at their lengths in pursuit of careless cool, stopping abruptly when the goal had been idiosyncratically accomplished. “This is a timeless, flattering shape that works so well with all hair textures and face shapes,” says hairstylist Tippi Shorter about wolf cut hair looks. “Just tailor to your own bone structure.”
And the best part? Once chopped and finessed to your individual tastes, maximum mussing is the goal for this cut. “A styling tip for this haircut is wash and go!” says Bobby Eliot, the stylist behind the manes of Julia Garner, Emilia Jones, and more. “You literally want texture, so the messier the better.”
Ahead, five ways to rock the wolf cut for the upcoming season — and the best products to enhance its air of artful dishevelment.
We at TZR only include products that have been independently selected by our editors. We may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article
Curly Wolf Cut
“Wolf cuts are great for all curls,” says Lauren Bailey-Chaidez, owner of Feverfew in Los Angeles and a champion of effortlessly awesome hair. “For thicker hair, I would take the crown layers shorter and collapse some weight so you can have volume while still maintaining the shape. Just remember that curls will spring up, so always request to leave more length than you think.”
A textured take on the already structural style makes for an eye-catching moment, and works on curls of all types. “Curly hair has the magic ability to defy gravity, and can give the appearance of density and volume even when that may not actually be the case,” says Rena Calhoun, the stylist responsible for Hunter Schafer’s hair. “Therefore, this cut can work on several different densities.” Pro tip: Keep coils residue-free and weightless for maximum impact.
Short Wolf Cut
Since the draw of the wolf is seriously shaggy texture, some length is needed. That said, abbreviated wolf cuts are in high demand. “Short wolf cuts are very popular right now,” says Bailey-Chaidez. “I always recommend taking the bangs shorter to emphasize the overall length of the cut. The contrast looks awesome.” Aside from offering a visually intriguing take on a shorter style, Calhoun notes that the short wolf cut offers a fun option for those who are in between lengths or are growing their hair out from a very short cut like a pixie “A salt spray at the roots and maybe a texturizing hold product to spike up and separate the layers,” says Bailey-Chaidez. “Think Joan Jett.”
Long Tapered Wolf Cut
The perfect blend between stylized and sleek, the long iteration of the wolf is best for those with hair to spare. “This cut looks amazing long,” says Bailey-Chaidez. “I would just err on the side of caution if your hair is very thin. You will definitely have more of a mullet shape if there isn’t enough weight kept behind the ears.” Eliot adds that, “This is great for really thick hair, as you can heavily layer and still keep length. You’re also able to undercut, which can help reduce the amount of hair to give the illusion of a slimmer texture — a benefit for people with tons of hair.” Spritz your roots with dry shampoo and lengths with texturizing spray to ensure the hair’s weight does not equate loss of zhuzh.
Full Fringe Wolf Cut
“I think a true wolf cut/shag cut should have bangs!” says Bailey-Chaidez. That said, full fringe adds an extra layer of maintenance. “To style, the biggest tip I give my clients is to take a flat brush on wet hair and blow-dry the bangs flat to the head in both directions,” says Calhoun. “It’s much less of a daily struggle if you get the weight right,” says Bailey-Chaidez. “I like using a light leave-in, like Reverie Milk on the bangs. Keep all styling products light around the face. You don’t want to add oils that can cause breakouts.”
Wolf Cut Mullet
Billie, Miley, Debby — proponents of the wolf mullet abound. And while the style generally elicits a punk-ish, devil-may-care feel, the mullet version takes the cut to rebellious realization. “It’s perfect for someone who wants to step slightly outside of the box,” says Calhoun. Bailey-Chaidez suggests keeping the crown layers short to exaggerate the shag’s cool shape. Then simply dab on a bit of styling cream, shape with your hands, and add some piece-y texture to the crown and ends. “Again, I think this cut is meant to look very lived-in and effortless.”