I'm not sure about you, but after going without haircuts and colour for a big chunk of last year, ever since salons reopened, I have been feeling somewhat overwhelmed in the run-up to my hair appointments. Should I go for a full-on transformation and get my hair chopped into short bob or embrace my current long hairstyle and add a fringe? There are so many hair possibilities to choose from, and I know that friends and family are feeling equally confused.
So who better to turn to than the experts themselves for some guidance? While we've already touched on what experts are predicting will be the biggest hair trends for 2022, we're left asking another question: What are people actually asking for in salons at the moment?
"I've had a lot of guests showing me pictures of shag haircuts," says Roman Sys, stylist at Trevor Sorbie Bristol for L'Oréal Professionnel. "They are all different lengths but definitely the loose, free-looking styles have been very popular. I definitely think with the trend of more shag haircuts, a 'less is more' approach works well. Letting your hair air dry to maintain some natural movement then scrunching in some light but hydrating mousse."
We're already aware that the mixie is set to be big news this year, but it turns out that people are already opting for this in salons. Creative Director at Butchers Hoxton Dominic Roach explains, "We're seeing clients that have already embraced the wolf/shag cuts and now want to experiment with shorter hair. Specifically, shorter at the front, longer at the back."
The mixie is a hybrid between the mullet and a pixie cut, and it's surprisingly wearable. "It is equally suitable for thicker textures and finer hair, as it is a style that doesn't require lots of styling and heat tools. I recommend air drying or using a diffuser on a low heat and speed to give texture and body," adds Roach.
Bobs have reigned supreme on the hair circuit over recent years, and there's no sign of this slowing down anytime soon. More recently, stylists have seen people asking for more undone "boy-like" styles. "The key thing that people are asking for is that this bob isn't overdone. Embrace your waves and texture, just with a solid baseline. Personalise by changing your parting or adding a fringe," says Roach.
"I'm actually seeing a resurgence of longer hair," says George Northwood, celebrity hairstylist and the founder of Undone. "A lot of my long-haired clients have asked me for just a trim, as they've never managed to grow it that long before, and they've realised it actually looks great. Last year gave people extra time to grow their hair beyond what they thought was possible."
We might associate glass hair (a trend that champions super-sleek, shiny hair that resembles glass) with seasons of yesteryear, but Roach says it is still one of the most-requested styles. "Glass hair is straight, sleek, healthy, glossy and shiny," he says. How you part it, whether it be on the side or in the middle, is totally up to you.
"Balayage is being taken blonder with the requests of a baby-blonde tone," says Samantha Cusick, Redken advocate and owner of Samantha Cusick London. "Clients are still keen to keep more of their natural colour at the root."
"Last year was all about the curtain bang, and it still reigns supreme in the salon," says Aveda senior pro stylist Michael Lendon. However, the style is becoming more developed, he admits. "Whether it's the classic curtain sweep, a shorter 'princess fringe' or a more grown-out 'bottle-bang' shape, sweeping fringes are a look that suits most and continues to be popular as a result."
If you're not quite ready for a mixie, Roach says that the octopus cut is proving popular too. "It celebrates length with more weight on the top and lots of layers throughout to give a shaggy, almost wispy feel," he says. As with all trending hairstyles right now, the octopus cut can be worn however you best please.
"You can air-dry with styling foams, scrunch in natural texture or wear it smooth and straight," advises Roach.
While we're expecting a big return to sweeping styles full of texture this year, Lendon says people are actually turning to something very different. "People are craving a little more structure. I've seen an uptick in clients wanting shorter, sharper styles, like chin-grazing bobs, that counteract the sweeping looks," he says.
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