A perfect example of this has got to be Dua Lipa, says Adam Reed, UK Editorial Ambassador for L’Oréal Professionnel. “Her haircuts are transformational, daring and a little bit out there.
It’s fresh and young but there are still elements of a classic style.”
That said, there are some key cuts that the cool girls request on repeat. These include updated classics like bobs and full fringes, to the top style of the moment which, if you haven’t already heard, is hands down, the shag. And, gaining momentum, big curls are big news as more of us embrace our natural texture.
The secret ingredient to cool girl hair might not be what you expect.
It’s not about an expensive blow dry, it’s not about getting the knack of tonging, “it’s not about one tribe, or one haircut,” says top hair stylist, Luke Hersheson. “Above all, it’s about attitude and putting your own spin on things,” whether that be with an ear tuck or a roughed-up texture that works with your personality. “It’s about having your own taste,” says Luke “and having the confidence to pull it off”.
The Curly Bob
Even before the pandemic kicked off, we were starting to see a huge movement back towards natural texture, which only gained momentum over lockdown. Instagram is loaded with girls experimenting with their natural curl pattern and finding new ways to make the most out of beautiful kinks and coils. “Curls, curls curls!” That’s what everyone is asking for now, reveals Ava Holland, Artistic Director at Marylebone-based salon, Gielly Green, who’s pegged it as the biggest trend to come out of lockdown.
This isn’t exactly news to the experts at The Curl Bar based in north London, “we’re always asked for volume, curly bangs or layers that enhance the curl,” they say. One way to embrace the natural movement is with a curly bob, says Ricky Walters, director of SALON64.
“More and more clients are requesting a curly bob cut partnered with a curly fringe for good measure,” he reveals. “A graduated bob which gives width around the cheek bones to frame the face has been a must-have for our curly clients this year.”
The Modern Shag
Another cut the experts agree on, is seventies Stevie Nicks-inspired shags. “The Shag is a big story this year for haircuts,” says Adam. “I think it’s because they’re easy to style but with maximum effect. They can be worn natural, soft and fresh (you can leave them to dry naturally, they don’t need a lot of time spent on them) or, if you want, they can be styled,” he explains.
“It looks great with soft golden highlights to show the heavy layering involved in this style,” adds Anita Rice, co-founder of east London’s Buller Rice salon. “I love the extreme version of a 70’s shag where the top layers are cut short but with loads of texture blending into long softer layers around the hairline,” she says.
And, it works beautifully across a range of textures. “One length hair weighs down waves, but 2020 has seen the rise of lots of undone layers,” says Ricky, and the choppy shag is a perfect example. “Cutting the length to the collar bone and slicing shorter layers throughout the hair has created the 70’s shag,” he says, which is all about showcasing texture.
While 2019 was the year of the bob and the lob, longer lengths are getting more of a look in these days, as more of us rock the over-grown and slightly feral strands we’ve accumulated over the past few months. “Ethereal fairytale length hair,” is definitely now a cool-girl shape, says Luke. “What Kim Kardashian is doing is quite nice because it’s very, very simple, but it moves nicely, there’s no clumpiness.” The key, is to avoid looking overly polished. “If you’re going to embrace your length, then it’s all about having really beautiful, tapered ends that disappear into nothing,” says Luke. “The extremity of the length is what really makes this style.”
The Boyfriend Bob
Even though we’re seeing more variety in length, bobs remain a major style. “We’re still asked to do bobs at all different lengths,” reveals Ava. The crucial difference is the cool girls want something more relaxed. “They want it styled with natural movement,” adds Ava. It falls somewhere in between the strict, poker straight styles and the super messy tonged styles we’ve been seeing.
Adam’s dubbed it the boyfriend bob. “Think a square outlined, shorter blockier bob,” he says. “Lots of girls are doing this bob really well,” agrees Luke, citing Cara Taylor and Kaia Gerber as muses.
“They wear theirs less messy. It’s more of a nod to the early 90s – centre parted with natural textures as opposed to being artificially undone or very styled. The bottom looks chunkier, clean-cut and quite perfect, but mixed with an air-dried texture so it doesn’t feel too done.”
The best part about the boyfriend bob, though, is that it’s versatile. “What’s great about this is it can be ironed smooth and glossy to get it looking super sharp or can be left looking tousled,” says Adam who recommends spritzing the hair with L’Oréal Professionnel TECNI.ART Pli. “It will give great body to the look,” he says.
The 70s Fringe
Autumn has seen an uptick in fringe requests. “Fringe season is definitely back,” says Ava. “All kinds – full fringes and curtain fringes are big at the moment and are being asked for a lot.” But the full fringe doesn’t have to be as much of a commitment as it sounds.
“Full fringes with quite a heavy base line can be worn soft [and swept sideways either side of your hairline to create the curtain fringe], or worn super defined,” says Adam.
“It’s the 70’s that’s leading the trend, especially combined with that more grown out Debbie Harry ‘esq’ colour and American 70s styling.” And, if you’ve just grown your fringe out, you can join in, too. “A heavy, grown-out, fringe cut to the cheek bones can give safer cuts a wow element,” says Ricky.