If being inside for weeks on end has you fantasizing about taking a pair of kitchen scissors to your scraggly ends, we're right there with you. Instead, why not pour that energy into planning your post-quarantine haircut (and pre-booking it to support your stylist, if you can)? For many of us, that's going to be a substantial chop that removes all the dead weight, while still falling well within our comfort zone: a classic mid-length lob.
To help you differentiate between every style of lob on Instagram, we've rounded up the most wearable variations. Whether your aesthetic is blunt and polished, styled with a center part, or feathered and shaggy, we have the lob for you. Check out the four trendiest takes on the universal refresh cut, ahead.
The shoulder-skimming lob has been trending since last fall, and has only picked up steam since. If you source hair inspiration by scrolling through Instagram, you may have noticed that many stars, like Jessica Alba and Olivia Culpo, are rocking blunt and polished lobs that are styled with shiny, loose waves.
If your hair is thin or fine, you can ask your stylist to cut into your ends to create a little extra body and keep the ends from falling flat. Fashion influencer Shea Marie is the perfect example, as styled by NYC-based hairdresser Melissa Parizot.
Hairstylist Joseph Maine tells us that a seemingly-blunt bob doesn't need to be cut razor-sharp. "With this cut, I always cut into it to achieve some added texture and movement," he explains of the style he created for Ashley Benson. "I like adding invisible layers — you can tell there are shorter bits throughout, but you can’t tell where they start or end."
The best part about a blunt lob is the styling versatility — we're particularly into the center part paired with softly flipped ends, as seen on London-based model Natasha Ndlovu.
The shag haircut is another a major trend right now. While the cut — identified by heavy layers and lash-skimming bangs — can be infused into any length, hair that falls just around the shoulders seems to be the sweet spot. Here, you see the ideal shape, styled by hairdresser Marisa Mitchell on her client Meg.
If your hair is straight and fine and you crave texture, you can add bangs and choppy layers to get that natural body infused into your lob. One of our favorite examples is this look by hairdresser and the owner of L.A's Nova Arts Salon, Sal Salcedo.
If your hair is curly, celebrity stylist Jillian Halouska recommends asking your stylist to blur the edges of your cut, softening the perimeter with long, seamless layers. Add a wispy bang and you'll have an edgy-yet-polished style like Parisian cool-girl Mélodie Vaxelaire.
When your ends fall right at your shoulder, you have length to play with. But with a shag, you can still maintain the fun bangs and face-framing layers around the face. Here, you see how hairdresser Daniel Martinez created lived-in dimension with his client's curls.
If you're looking to infuse some texture into your lob without the drama of heavy bangs, consider long, soft layers blended through the mid-shaft to ends of the hair, in what celebrity hairdresser Nikki Lee — who created this look — would call a "feathered" lob.
Strategic feathering can open up the face, as proven by the stunning Priyanka Chopra and her mid-length lob, courtesy of Maine.
The gradual layers add subtle shape and dimension when infused into a lob. Model Candice Blackburn shows just how beautiful it looks on natural curls.
If your hair is on the fine side, you can ask your stylist to layer your lob with choppy top layers — like stylist Carlos Castellanos does, here — which gives extra body around the cheekbones and fresh ends right at the shoulder.
Blurred A-line Lob
If you've been considering the A-line cut, but can't commit to the short bob length, you can achieve the same vibe with a mid-length style you can comfortably pull back into a ponytail. Model Jourdan Dunn, who was styled by celebrity hairdresser Sascha Breuer, channels the look effortlessly.
L.A.-based stylist Anh Co Tran sparked the "parallel undercut" trend, which is a transitional layering technique that delivers body and movement to fine hair. Your stylist can create a parallel undercut by cutting it bluntly at the ends and styling it with a soft, A-line shape. Rose-pink color adds some oomph to the stylist's finished look.