How to know if you're ready for short hair
Popular Haircuts

Getting the chop: how to know if you're ready for short hair

17 July 2017
Stylist cutting a short bob on a client with blonde hair
Nicole Vince

Nicole Vince

Hair journalist

Nicole is a hair and beauty journalist with a particular fondness for the latest bright hair colors. There isn't a hair trend or tip unobserved by Nicole.

It’s been a long time since you’ve transformed your ‘do, and since you’ve been flirting with the idea of short hair. You’re so tempted, but haven’t yet taken the plunge due to the threatening cloud of regret you predict is on the horizon. Having encountered this predicament countless times, our experts equip you with the knowledge you need to clear away those grey clouds and to make an informed decision.

1. Look to your jawline for guidance

According to Bertram K, an Austrian hairdresser and L’Oréal Professionnel international portfolio artist, “clients should think of their overall desired silhouette when they go to the salon, and that silhouette is usually oval. Everything about the haircut should therefore work towards achieving an oval face shape”. Your jaw bone, with the help of a pencil and ruler, can help you decipher how to achieve this. Simply place a pencil under your chin horizontally and a ruler under your ear vertically, so that they are adjacent. Measure the intersection of the pencil and ruler. If your jaw is shorter than 2.25", then short hair will boost you on your way to creating the oval face shape; anything more, then you are better suited to longer locks.

2. For short hair, ask your stylist

These are exactly the kinds of questions that your stylist is there to answer. If you are truly torn, then your hairdresser can examine your hair thickness, quality, face shape, as well as other factors in order assess whether a short cut is the best option for you.

“Body shape is just as important as face shape when it comes to determining the optimal haircut”, Bertram K reveals. “Make the client stand to survey the whole proportion of the body, and then decide if you need to add or remove volume to coordinate with the bigger picture. For example, if you are short, it is not advised to opt for a very long hairstyle, as it will make you look much shorter –and vice versa”.

3. Short hair calls for more styling

Many people think less hair equals less styling time – however, this is a common misconception. 

Nicole Vince Hair journalist

You may shave off a minute or two of the time you spend shampooing, but gone are the days of shoving up your tresses in a lazy ponytail, and in are the hours spent perfecting your wax, clay and texturizing techniques. You’ll soon become a short hair-styling pro, but be aware that the “practicality” belief is smoke and mirrors!

If you do decide that the chop is for you, then try Kérastase K Powder Bluff as well as Redken Water Wax. These short hair superheroes will instantly add texture without the accompanying minutes!

4. Can you pace yourself?

If regret is one of your main obstacles on the road to short hair, then know that it’s not obligatory to head straight for the pixie cut! Indeed, hair stylists advise you to take incremental steps (especially if you have waist-long locks!), in order to slowly accustom yourself to the new length, texture and styling regimen of your new style. One idea is to cut in a lob, then a bob, and finally – should you wish to truly commit – try out a pixie cut. This way, you can stop cutting at any point along the process. Crisis averted!

5. You just don’t want to wonder any more

All things considered, if you still have an unsatisfied yearning for long hair, then there is a strong case to be made for just taking the plunge. In any case, if you don’t like it, then it’s not a permanent change. Your strands will soon grow back!

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