How to make the shaggy bob work for your hair type

If there’s a haircut that’s a symbolic sign of the times, it’s the shaggy bob.

Anywhere from the chin to the shoulders, which feels refreshed after a year of nothing but length, and messy layers that grow out well – because who really knows if we’ll be plunged into life without a hairdresser again this year.

Pair it with a fringe of varying heaviness and you have a bouncy cut that doesn’t need much fuss.

It’s coming back in style and with good reason.

On Pinterest there’s been four times the amount of usual search on ‘short layered hairstyles’ since salons reopened and a 45% increase in ‘short hair with bangs’ – the answer to this is the shaggy bob.

It’s been worn by A-list celebrities over the years and seems to be one of those styles that keeps making a comeback.

Luke Benson, a celebrity hairdresser working with Wella, tells Metro.co.uk the cut comes back ‘because it is so versatile’.

‘Perfect for if you are growing out a shorter hairstyle, and also perfect for different hair textures and densities.

‘Paired with the right products you can then either leave to dry on its own or use tools to encourage and define a shape.’

You might be wondering how to make it work for your particular hair type.

The codes professionals use to categorise hair are from 1a to 4c

1a hair is typically fine and straight, and 4c is usually coily and more fragile, then the other hair types make up all the numbers and letters in between.

What to ask for

As a starting point, Charles Worthington ambassador’s Ken O’Rourke says: ‘Ask your hairdresser to slice a few layers into your hair so it gives it a bit of volume and doesn’t make it look too flat – this is ideal for all types of hair whether thick or thin.’

The low maintenance look can create different results for different hair types – for example, if you have fine hair, it can trick the eye into making hair look fuller and with greater volume.

Ken adds: ‘With finer hair, it’s best to stick to longer layers as this will give the hairstyle a bulkier look, without it losing weight and body.’

Harry Wiffen, stylist at Trevor Sorbie Covent Garden for L’Oréal Professionnel, says you could also go for ‘short blunt layers with a soft fringe’ and even suggests discussing with your stylist ‘using a razor to add a choppy textured look to add more body to the hair’.

Whereas if you have thick curly hair, you can use the shaggy bob to emphasise that natural texture.

‘Some people go for big volume layers and hip curtain bangs to allow curls to spring for maximum bounce in the crown then softly taper towards the nape,’ Harry says.

The thicker the hair, the more he advises opting for longer layers which will still lift some of the weight of the hair off, but in being longer will ensure the hair still has a soft shape.

Textured hair specialist Errol Douglas MBE, who works with Living Proof, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘To create the shaggy bob on textured hair, it’s all about the cut.

‘It’s important to get the cut right in order to take the weight out the hair and give it texture.’

Problematically, not all hairdressers are trained to work with these hair types, so it’s important to see a specialist or hairstylist that is known for understanding how to treat and cut type 4 hair.

Styling at home

The beauty of the shaggy bob is that you don’t need to do anything to it if you’re happy embracing a ‘lived in’ look.

However, there are ways to enhance the cut at home.

Errol says: ‘You’ll need to prep the hair well so it can be styled more easily and will be long-lasting.’

He advises using a hair styler in the form of an oil or gel-creme texture to define coils after washing.

These kinds of products will help to create bouncy but aligned curls patterns while also preventing any shrinkage.

For finer hair types that feel ‘limp’ after a wash, Ken says the styling products to choose should be a mousse when drying your hair to give a bit of structure. Then finish it off with a texturising spray to provide a tousled, effortless result.

And if you’re heading out on a special occasion and want to do something slightly different with the cut, Harry suggests using straighteners around the edges to flick out hair, giving a retro look.

He adds that thicker hair with waves and curls should try diffusing to dry on a low speed and high heat to make the most of that texture.

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