"Should I cut my hair?"
It's a beauty question we all ask ourselves cyclically: Every six months or so, some event happens in our lives that inspires us to go into transition mode, and we feel the itch to do something to our hair to match the change. But then we get cold feet. Because we remember that one bad pixie cut we had seven years ago. And we fail to go for it. Well, not this time…
There just so happens to be a slew of incredibly cool, badass, androgynous It girls whose buzzcuts, pompadours, and grown-out pixies give those of us with an inkling to go short no reason not to do it. We gathered our faves along with pro care and styling tips courtesy of Melanie Bolton and Trey Gillen to bring you the best of androgynous celeb-inspired hair inspo.
Meet the Expert
Behold: 20 of the coolest short haircuts in Hollywood.
Textured Pixie With Micro Fringe
Zoë Kravitz proves to be one of our favorite sources of hair inspo, time and time again. This pixie cut of hers is on point with its mashup of retro and contemporary trends. Bolton explains: "This chic and timeless look is elegantly structured with micro fringe and highly defined texture to give it a 2020s-meets-1990s vibe. This versatile cut can go from ultra-refined to free-spirited in seconds, with a quick adjustment to the length around the perimeter of the face."
Versatile and eye-catching, the undercut has become a favorite hairstyle among celebs who enjoy the element of surprise. Ask your stylist to "clipper cut the back and sides and leave the top long and textures above the parietal ridge of the head (in other words, above the eyebrows)," instructs Gillen. To style, "[use] Sachajuan Hair Wax Pomade ($34) to piece out the mane and smooth down the sides as the fade grows out," he adds.
Curly, Cropped Pixie
Logan Browning is a prime example of someone who knows how to work with, rather than against, their hair's natural texture. She plays with contrast by slicking back hair on the sides in order to highlight her beautiful natural curls on top.
The '90s bowl cut is back with a vengeance. "[It's] so trendy with an edge—a standout haircut," comments Gillen. Not to mention, it's also a great option if you're growing out your pixie. Depending on your mood, he says, "Wear it sleek and smooth to show the bulky round shape or tousled and textured to lighten it up."
Fitness guru Bethany C. Meyers is something of a hair chameleon, but this dark buzz (achieved using a number one blade) with a little volume on top is one of our favorite looks of hers, especially when paired with mile-long lashes and a classic red lip. Bolton comments, "This style is all about volume and scalp health. Choose a system that provides weightless lift and while optimizing the scalp environment."
Rowan Blanchard's piecey, grown-out pixie is enhanced by long sideburns. "This is an edgy trend that adds softness toward the face and gives a great editorial look," says Gillen. Piece it out and texturize the hair that frames your face with Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray ($48).
Take your short crop to the next level with an icy tone. "The volume achieved by lightening the hair gives this cut soft texture and an overall feeling of effortless chic," says Bolton. Since "ultra-lightened hair is very fragile... it is important to choose care products that protect color and replenish moisture," she adds.
This look needs some style-savvy. We recommend blow styling, using fingers to create movement. Finish with a dry texture spray to add volume at the root where needed and to define detail around the face.
Pixie With Baby Bangs
Tessa Thompson proves that there's nothing to be afraid of when it comes to short bangs. Rather than go for a blunt finish, she ops for intentionally uneven ends. The effect is casually cool while the close crop keeps things chic and balanced.
Unlike the mushroom cuts that permeated the '90s, today's version feels up-to-date and modern thanks to subtle volume and texture. To replicate Meagan Good's style, begin by washing hair with a volumizing shampoo followed by a texturizing spray. We recommend Joico Joifull Volumizing Shampoo ($30) and Bed Head Salty Not Sorry Epic Texturizing Salt Spray ($20) to get the job done.
Rose "Bold" Buzzcut
Have you heard? Rose gold hair is all the rage. But a rose gold buzzcut? Well, "[it's] nothing short of spectacular," gushes Bolton. In terms of care, "Maintaining creative color requires products that prevent color fade and dryness. Choose products that are sulfate-free, lightweight, and that enhance shine."
Another vintage style that has found popularity among today's celebs and fashionistas is the pompadour. According to Bolton, "Its adaptability and androgyny exude the quintessential essence of rebel and cool—just like it did in the 1950s." To style, use a volume powder, cream, or mousse at the roots and blow-dry the lengths in sections to encourage height at the front.
When referring to the shag, Gillen says, "Think Pat Benatar, as her haircut has made a comeback." Here, Mica Argañaraz gives us the curly-haired version, which adds movement and softness. "Super cool and easy for the summer, it's basically bed head made trendy," adds Gillen.
British model Adwoa Aboah was one of the first buzzcut icons of the 21st century that we were truly inspired by, and she continues to prove that no hair can be just as seductive and commanding as (if not more than) waist-length waves. Not to mention, "An iconic buzzcut with a touch of color is a fantastic way to enhance facial features and reveal the real you," says Bolton.
Once a hairstyle faux pas, the mullet has gotten a 21st-century makeover. "[It's] a super trending haircut for someone wanting a bold statement haircut," states Gillen. He suggests, "Modernize the look with baby bangs. Get down to 'business' with Sachajuan Dry Powder Shampoo ($39), which gives you great texture to highlight all the 'party.'"
Ruth Bell has let her strands grow out a bit since that traffic-stopping platinum shaved head she debuted in 2015, but we're living for this grow-out stage. Her boyish, choppy pixie is just textured and dimensional enough to look flattering on pretty much every face shape. "The goal with this look is to create movement and texture," says Bolton. She suggests using Flow Touchable Texture Design Cream ($22) and Flow Root Reboot Texture & Root Refresher Spray ($22) to help get you there.
Justin Bieber sported it a while ago but these days this 'do is a hot, androgynous haircut trend. "This cut gives you a lot of fringe to play with and style in multiple ways. It kind of nods toward a bowl cut but is heavier and shaggy on top," says Gillen. Use Amika Heist 3-in-1 Molding Blend ($25) to create separation and definition.
Dancer Mette Towley first shaved her head at the request of Rihanna (and when Fenty's superhuman founder says jump, you ask how high). In the end, the platinum buzz looks stunning, allowing Towley's bone structure and dark eyes to speak for themselves. Bolton agrees: "This gorgeous take on the classic buzzcut has a little extra texture and length at the top to provide lots of movement to the look," comments Bolton.
Short, One-Length Crop
Jill Soloway, creator of the Amazon series Transparent, chopped all their hair off and stopped wearing "glam" makeup in 2015 and has felt a sense of empowerment and relief as a result. That's one of the many cool things about inch-long hair: You don't have to style it at all for it to look instantly polished, especially when paired with a set of geometric glasses and a confident disposition. "A little bit of cream-based texture cream would be a great way to control frizz and add dimension to this look," adds Bolton.
"The Bieber"-Bowl Hybrid
This mashup of two styles already mentioned on our list—"The Bieber" and bowl cut—gives Jennifer Hudson the best of both worlds. To get her glossy tresses, apply a shine serum or dry oil to dry hair. Something like Olaplex No. 7 Bonding Hair Oil ($28) will do the trick.
You can't very well put together an ode to androgynous hair without acknowledging Ruby Rose (she actually spilled us her secrets to making your look more gender-bending). This sleek, grown-out pixie looks equally chic, whether you slick it back or add some easy, sophisticated waves. Bolton advice, "Be sure to choose lightweight products that keep the hair hydrated and frizz-free. Also, regardless of the look you are going for, consider adding some volume at the roots to keep lengths from falling flat."