The 5 Emotional Stages of Getting Your Hair Cut Short

Updated 07/06/19
@iamlaurajackson

Short hair is having a bit of a moment (again). With a little help from Instagram and people like Laura Jackson chopping off her long brown hair, people (myself included) are taking the plunge to go a little shorter. 

I'm no stranger to short hair, I've been in a long-short battle for about five years. But I always, always go back to the bob. Given that I have extremely fine hair, I know it's what suits me and it's what makes my hair look thickest. But that doesn't mean I don't still go through a battle before a cut. This time I headed down to leading London salon Hershesons to cut off my now shoulder-length hair. 

Keep reading to see if you can relate to any of these emotions when getting your hair cut shorter.

1. Indecisiveness

Do I? don't I?! You're in that in-between phase with no clue what to do. Some friends are telling you to man up and cut it while others are saying be patient and let it grow. Neither are helpful and all you can think about is how much you hate your hair.

Samuel Broadbent, Hershesons stylist and the wizard that cut my hair, told me if you're feeling unsure, it's best to really mull it over and book a consultation if you are feeling apprehensive. I couldn't agree more with this advice/ I thought about cutting mine for about two months before actually doing it. It's best to be absolutely sure rather than sorry. 

2. Determination

That's it. You've made up your mind. It's happening and you've booked your appointment. You're determined, but now, what kind of cut do you get? What style would complement you best? You're basically back at square one and you have no idea what to do and only a thousand screenshots on your phone to help. 

Scrolling through the internet and Byrdie.co.uk can be really helpful when you're struggling to figure out what style you want. Take a moment to figure out exactly what short look you want, from lobs to buzz-cuts, there's a lot out there. And figuring out which is most "you" can take some of the pressure off. 

3. Fear

You've sat down in the hairdresser's chair, along with your screenshot of Alexa Chung circa 2007 (let's be honest, she's the bob queen), but you've had a sudden realization. What if this cut doesn't suit my face shape? The fear is strong, and you're freaking out. Try to stay calm, though. You're in the right place—talk it through with your hairdresser. That's what they're there for, after all. 

Sam told me that when it comes to face shapes and short hair, he thinks it's wholly subjective and it's best to take your own personal features into consideration.

For me, we came up with a "hair plan." I want my hair to be a one-length bob one day—fringe included—as layers can make my fine hair look and feel limper. So we did nothing to the front of my hair, as it needs to grow before it can be cut. We then cut the back about an inch shorter so it appeared thicker. He advised me to come back in about six to eight weeks when the front of my hair had grown, and then we could start cutting that and styling it with the rest of my hair. 

Having a hairdresser take into consideration your overall look and vibe really helps, especially when you want to achieve a new look later down the line, or are growing out a bad previous cut. 

4. Excitement

Mid-cut you stare into the mirror and hardly recognize yourself. Granted, your hair is wet but look at your split ends on the floor. You've only gone and done it, and you're already feeling like a new woman. You're taking note of how the hairdresser is styling it, careful not to miss a minute of their knowledge. Sam recommended using a little salt spray on towel-dried hair to give my new short hair that gritty, lived-in feel. I love the Bumble and Bumble. Surf Spray ($27). I've also been using the Ouai Texturizing Hair Spray ($26) on mine when dry to help plump it up and give it volume. 

5. Pure glee

Three days into your new haircut and you can't even remember any other stage. The fear is gone and you're loving the newfound attention your short bob gives you. Your neck might be bare, but you feel amazing and are already planning your next cut where you might dare going even shorter. Maybe. 

Click through our gallery to see which shortcut would suit your face shape. 

 

Will short hair suit me: Emilia Clarke at 'Me Before You' premiere
Getty/ Karwai Tang

Round Faces

If you have a round face like Emilia Clarke, Sam recommends creating length and opting for a lob instead of a bob. It's also best to attempt to elongate the face with longer layers and a centre parting.

Will short hair suit me: Olivia Wilde at Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Luncheon
Getty/ Roy Rochlin

Square Faces

If you have a wider square face like Olivia Wilde, you can go shorter. Sam advises creating texture with layers to help soften angular faces. Go for textured layers, and then create a playful look like Olivia with a half-up, half-down hairstyle.

Will short hair suit me: Scarlett Johansson at 89th Annual Academy Awards
Getty/ Dan MacMedan

Heart-Shaped Faces

If you've been blessed with a heart-shaped face, you can really pull off extremely short looks, like Scarlett Johansson. Sam recommends adding shape to your look with a frame-facing fringe, which you can either wear across your face or style to create volume. 

Will short hair suit me: Alexa Chung at AW17 Burberry show
Getty/ Anthony Harvey

Oval Faces

Oval faces can pretty much get away with any short cut. But opt for something with long layers, like Alexa, to give your hair movement. Sam recommends using a wand, like the T3 Whirl Convertible ($195), to create those perfect beachy waves. 

Up next: 12 It girl–approved short haircuts for girls with fine hair.

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