Celebrity hair

This is How Shorter Hairstyles Have Historically Empowered Women

by lydiah / last updated September 20, 2019

Shorter hairstyles have long been a dramatic way to change up your look. It’s a timeless length that has been a hit throughout the decades. From the Roaring Twenties flappers to the androgyny of the 1980s, this hairstyle has not left the salons.

Why is the style empowering?

In the words of Coco Channel, “A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life”. Whether your client is asking for a pixie cut or a page boy style, a change of lifestyle may be coming their way.

Long hair has historically been seen as the definition of beauty, no matter the styling, whether its straight, wavy or even slung into a ponytail. “Long hair, before the last century was directly associated with a woman’s marriageability and, therefore her worth,” says Rachael Gibson, The Hair Historian on Instagram.

Shorter Hairstyles – A 1980s Hit

By the 1980s, shorter hair had become a popular hairstyle for women, associated with career focused women and feminism. A shorter hairstyle is also more inclusive for the LGBTQ+ community today, as the style is commonly associated with androgyny, combining both masculine and feminine expressions.

In the past, androgynous hair cuts and shorter hair were embraced by mainstream popstars like Grace Jones and Annie Lennox, who wore their hair in a style which was typically deemed as male.  However, today it’s worn by celebrity style icons like Kristen Stewart, Emma Watson and Rihanna.

“If long hair had always been associated with a patriarchal vision of femininity, short hair is very much about independence and doing things your own way”

Styling and Maintaining Shorter Hairstyles

 Some clients may feel trepidations about drastically changing their hairstyle, worried that it may not suit or sit right with their face shape. However, Philipp Haug, London Hairdresser of the Year, believes it’s all about the right shape. “I am passionate about short hair and believe there is a short haircut for everyone. There is so much variation with short hair and there’s a style that suits every face shape and hair texture.”

He continues, “It’s important that the length round the perimeter is cut to suit the face shape, but it is really the fringe that can make a difference. With a wider face, a longer asymmetric fringe with a short haircut can look cool, while someone with a narrow face should add a bit more width through the style. As long as there is texture and a good cut, even short hair can last 8-10 weeks before it needs reshaping.”

Before letting your clients leave the salon, advise them to come back every week or so to trim their edgy and empowering fringe.

Lead image via Shutterstock

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