Here’s an all too familiar scene: You’ve stood for far too long in front of a mirror questioning whether today is the day you finally hack your hair into a bob. We’ve all been there, right? By the looks of things, there’s no better time than now, as hairstylists have told us that this year they have seen an increased demand for shorter, choppier chops.
While the popular long bob (“lob”) has dominated over the past few years, a bob-and-bangs pairing elevates the shape one step further. The fashionable cut teeters on the line between edgy and classic and seems to suit so many face shapes. Whether you opt for a blunt cut or a more textured style, full fringe or sweeping side parting, there are many ways to pull off this cut. Of course, committing to a fringe can be a daunting prospect for some (cue flashbacks to lockdown DIY disasters or childhood fringes), however, according to hairstylists we spoke to, fringes are set to be even more popular in 2021.
“Wearing masks is going to continue to be non-negotiable, and many of my regular clients have been having fringes cut in to complement them,” says Amber Swift, salon director, and head technician at Charlie Miller Holy Corner. “Generally easier to maintain in the colder months, as heat can often present styling problems, fringes help to frame and define the face, so I see the logic in wanting one to complement your mask. I’d recommend going for a choppier, more relaxed cut that’s easier to replicate should a more serious lockdown be put in place again.”
Hairstylist to Alexa Chung George Northwood, predicts choppy bobs will be more popular in 2021. “As we are currently in this cycle of going in and out of lockdown, I think more people will be looking for an easy-to-maintain style,” he previously told Who What Wear. “A lot of our clients have been requesting the effortless, undone bob, which is one of my signature styles that originated from working with Alexa Chung. I think that this will continue to be popular going into 2021, as it’s quite a relaxed, messy style, meaning that when it grows out it will still look effortlessly chic.”
Nicole Pembrook, owner of International Beauty Expert, has also seen an increased demand for shorter cuts: “After surviving one lockdown, I’m finding many of my clients are looking to hone their grown-out styles and are instead looking for short, tapered cuts, either in their natural form or relaxed. These looks are timeless, chic, and easy to style. Opt for length at the crown, keeping things shorter at the sides.”
“Shoulder-length bobs will be popular. The shag, the blunt textured bob, and the cheekbone-skimming bob,” confirms Rosslyn Orr, salon director and head technician at Charlie Miller South St Andrew Street. “Almost all of my clients are asking me about low-maintenance, choppy, and unstructured styles.”
So why not combine the two, and pair a fringe with a bob? If you’re going to head to the salon once they reopen, bring along some visual inspiration thanks to these images below.
Chloe Helen Miles was born to pull off this haircut. The soft, sweeping fringe accentuates her features and gives the cut a romantic feel. We’re appreciating all the B’s here: Babba’s blunt bob, bangs, and incredible boots. Ever-so-elegant, Chanel’s natural hair frames her face beautifully. Grece’s incredible silver-toned jaw-length bob with a subtle sweeping fringe is a timeless option. Karoline’s hairstyle is a great idea for those who aren’t quite ready to go above the chin and cut in a full fringe. Amy’s signature tousled bangs-and-bob has grown to be her signature hairstyle that many are trying to re-create. We love the ’70s feel of the flick of Katherine’s slightly parted fringe paired with her grown-out bob. Emmanuelle reminds us that another perk of a jaw-length ‘do is that they are perfect for showing off statement earrings. With a chunky fringe that just skims the eyes, Maria’s unique style is complemented by her bold cut. Naomi tends to keep her shorter layers pulled back, yet leaves her fringe loose when her hair is worn in a low bun. Very cool. Who What Wear favorite Nicole Ocran opted for a beautiful shorter style and a fringe this year. Sarah’s soft fringe frames her face so well. Lizzie’s feathered cut proves that bobs and fringes don’t have to be severe, but can be carefree. This colorful bow with patchwork prints is so beautiful and the perfect addition to Aisha’s bob. Alice may be from Manchester, but this haircut gives us serious Parisian vibes. While Alyssa may have since gone for a pixie crop, we’re sure this fringe and bob picture will be taken to many hairdressers in 2021 and beyond. A short cut and a full-bodied fringe bring textured hair shape and volume, as demonstrated by Aysha. Need some soft volume? This tool delivers. Frizz and bangs don’t mix, so an elixir like this one is a must. This legendary dry shampoo can extend the life of your style between wash days and give you a hit of volume all at once. There’s nothing like a stylish headband to take your hairstyle to the next level. If you’re styling a curly or kinky texture, don’t scrimp on a fab moisturizing pudding to give your tresses lots of shine and definition. Not only does the hairstylist-approved spray impart insane levels of shine, but it also serves as a bomb heat protectant to guard against damage. If you want to add some classic beach waves to your bob or your bangs (or both!), the beloved spray can help you get the look with ease.