Winter 2021’s Biggest Haircut Trends, From the Short Shag to Bold Bangs

This year has been marked by a year of haircut experimentation, from the historic return of the mullet to the rise of the fresh start buzzcut over summer. Heading into winter and 2022, the experimental hairstyles show no sign of easing up. Daniel McCourt, hairstylist at Sassoon Academy, says this season will be all about “going with what feels right, no rules applying, and celebrating your point of difference”. Which for many might mean giving into the impulse of going for a new haircut this winter that they have never tried before.

Yo Kruiz, a senior color tech at Whip London, says hair clients are currently most interested in texture, shapes, and movement of their hair. “It gives a huge opportunity for extra expression for those not open for a more out-of-the-box look with wilder vibes,” Kruiz says. So, while we might not all opt for a full-on ’80s-style mullet or shave our heads this winter, there’s nothing more refreshing than getting a fresh chop and there are a bevy of attractive options of you’re not ready to invent your own. Here are the haircut styles that will stick with us through the winter and take us well into next year.

The Tucked-In Bob

From Selena Gomez to Kourtney Kardashian, it seems like every celebrity is currently opting for a chic, blunt bob, especially if it’s kept sleek, precise, and with gently rounded ends framing the face. At the perfect height for resting just above a winter coat, staying neat and above the staticky fray, the bob makes a comeback year-after-year and this one is no exception. BLACKPINK’s Lisa marries two of the season’s main trends with a smooth bob and substantial bangs.

The Big Bang(s)

If you weren’t already considering getting bangs (like we all so often do), Zendaya and Kaia Gerber’s recent blunt bang moments might just convince you. McCourt says he’s seeing all types of fringes—including feathery bangs, ‘70s side-sweeping bangs, and fringes above the brow. But no matter which way they’re styled to suit someone’s face, it’s clear thick, full fringes are taking the cake during this cold season.

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The Shorty Shag

Alongside the comeback of mullets has been the sharp rise in shaggy layers. From Miley Cyrus to Billie Eilish, messy shag cuts are back and taking shape in almost every haircut. “The shaggy soft layered look is a constant, whether it’s in a bob, longer hair, or a pixie cut,” Kruiz says. In particular, we’re seeing our favorite cool girls rocking a version that rests right around the chin, styled with rebellious messy waves and bends. But, even if your hair isn’t that same texture, there are so many ways to make your current haircut more shaggy–the cut can suits all hair types, embracing natural texture and waves.

Going Longer

For some, this might not be a haircut perse, but you can still change your look by adding layers, letting your hair grow out, or adding in extensions. McCourt says winter will be defined by “lived-in, undone layered hair”. Much like Y2K Avril Lavigne hair (and current Avril hair), long hair this season doesn’t need to have that thick, one-length look. It can have face-framing layers–including bangs (or the appearance of them due to extensions), and thinned out ends that really show off the layered cut. With longer layers, you get the best of long hair without the heavy feeling with the added bonus of natural movement.

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