If there ever were a perfect time to experiment with your hair, summer would be it. With time to grow it out or re-dye it if it’s a disaster, you can be bold and go with that shorter style you’ve been wanting. But before you make the chop, there are a few things you need to consider. Here’s what you’ve got to ask yourself.
Are My Expectations Realistic?
Ask any hairstylist, and they’ll tell you that most of the pictures you cut out of celebrities or hair models are totally unrealistic for most people. These images are photoshopped, or the hair is styled daily by someone paid a ton of money. The color may be faked, the volume may be manipulated, and it may just be a wig!
Instead of hunting for a summer do via your favorite magazine, look on Google images for real people with the hair you want. Go to Facebook for some inspiration from your friends. Or try following Instagram hair stylists (not the celebrity ones) for examples that are of real, everyday people.
What’s My Hair Type?
Do you have big, chunky curls or is your hair pin straight? Waves can go both ways, so be sure to take note if your hair curls strangely in some places or spirals near the ends. Then there’s hair quality. It’s pretty obvious when you’ve got fine hair versus thick, but you should also consider if your hair is oily, dry, damaged, etc.
Why do you need to know this? It all goes back to realistic expectations for your new haircut. Some looks, especially celebrity-inspired, need thick, glossy hair that those with fine, thin hair can’t achieve on their own. Your stylist can certainly help you figure out which hair-inspiration will work with what you have.
How Much Maintenance is This Going to Take?
Believe it or not, but short hair takes time! Beach waves don’t make themselves, and that messy pixie often requires perfecting the hair gel. So before you tell yourself that this is going to be the solution to cutting down your beauty routine time, think again.
If you’re dying for something simple and roll-out-of-bed easy, focus on cuts that use razors for natural curling, multiple layers, and require no heat (dryers, curls, straighteners). Haircuts that can still be pinned back or put in a ponytail is especially a good idea if you’re sporty!
Will There Be an Awkward Grow-Out Phase?
Summer perfection might mean winter meh-ness. Some people hate the way their hair looks when it gets to the medium length. It just doesn’t work. Others are totally happy with a medium bob for the fall.
So if you’re going to go short and you’re not a fan of the chin or shoulder lengths, you better commit to either keeping it at the perfect length through the seasons or investing in a regular appointment with your stylist to keep the medium length looking good.
Why Do I Want It?
We often cut our hair for drastic reasons. For example, we get a breakup chop or do the job interview cut. But when the dust has settled, and we’re back to normal, we still have to live with our hair (at least until it grows out).
Before you sit down in that salon chair, ask yourself why you want to cut your hair. And then ask yourself if you will be okay with it in a week, month, year? Will this be a look you think will beat the trends or is it something you’re going to cringe over when you’re older?
Your summer chop should be about fun, exploration, and letting your hair go. No drama and no bad cuts allowed!