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What are the Different Types of Haircuts?

Diane Goettel
Updated May 21, 2024
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There are dozens of types of haircuts that include classic looks, and more modern, edgy styles, all of which can be grouped into categories according to hair length. Some of the most recognizable haircuts include the pixie, the bob, the shag, the mullet, and feathered haircuts. There are also a number named after the people or characters who wore them. Two types that became popular because of television actresses include the "Farrah Fawcett," a style that the actress wore when she was on Charlie's Angel's and the "Rachel," a style worn by Jennifer Anniston during her first few years on the television show Friends.

The pixie and the bob are two of the most common short haircuts. The pixie is a very short cut in which the hair is just 1 or 2 inches (2 to 5 cm) long. In some cases, the front is much longer so that the person wearing the cut has bangs or even a sort of mop of hair on the top of her head. This haircut became very popular in the 1960s when it was worn by both the British model Lesley Hornby, better known as "Twiggy," and the actress Mia Farrow, who wore it in the horror film Rosemary's Baby. The bob haircut is a cut in which the hair is jaw-length and either uniform in length or angled. This haircut, which became popular in the 1920s and has experienced a number of revivals since then, may include bangs.

The shag and the mullet are two types of haircuts that can be applied to medium length hair. The shag is a style that requires a great deal of layering, especially around the crown of the head. This creates a very full look with lots of wisps of hair that fan out from the head. In the mullet, the hair on the top of the head and around the face is quite short, but the hair in the back is much longer. Both the mullet and the shag can include bangs.

The feathered haircut is a common long style in which the hair around the face is cut in layers. These layers then "feather" away from the face. This haircut was very common in the 1970s but has made a few comebacks. It is usually styled with a curling iron for maximum effect.

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Diane Goettel
By Diane Goettel , Former Writer
"Diane Goettel has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in English from Brooklyn College. Diane lives in Mount Vernon, New York with her husband, Noah. They are the proud parents of a Doberman Pinscher named Spoon. Specialties: book editing, book marketing, book publishing, freelance writing, magazine publishing, magazine writing, copywriting,"

Discussion Comments

By Potterspop — On Jun 20, 2011

The types of haircuts men can choose from are pretty limited, though there are a few that are unisex I suppose.

I've lived though the hippy hair of the 1960s, a mullet that makes me cringe when I see old pictures of myself, and the curly perm which was the only way to look for the longest time.

These days I just stick with what my dad used to call a 'short back and sides'. I don't envy younger men the pressure to wax, style and blow dry every day.

By StarJo — On Jun 20, 2011

I had the 'Rachel' in high school. I had been struggling for years back and forth between bangs and the uncomfortable process of growing them out. The in-between was unbearable, as the rest of my hair was very long.

I went with a shag cut that blended my cheekbone-length bangs in with the rest of my hair, which was shortened to shoulder-length. I must say, with the help of velcro rollers, I had quite a stylish 'do! Even though I had layers to style, it was much easier to maintain than my long locks. Washing and drying time shrank to about half of what they once required.

By kylee07drg — On Jun 20, 2011

@mabeT - I think a feathered cut would be great for you. If you want to grow your hair out long again, then the layers and thinning provided by a feathered cut would go great with a round face.

I know everyone says that long hair drags a narrow face down and makes it appear thinner. That would be ideal for a round face!

When feathering hair, a stylist usually will use a blade for a more natural and gradual layering effect. Layers around your face should begin at the mouth and work downward.

If you do decide to go with a layered look, then it can be easily updated as your hair grows out. The stylist can re-feather your layers around your face at any time while still leaving the overall length.

By poppyseed — On Jun 20, 2011

My husband is only in his early thirties, but he is already starting to lose his hair in the front. Some medication that he has to take is at least partly to blame.

I am curious what kinds of mens hair styles they can choose from when they start to lose their hair to make it a little less noticeable.

It’s really bothering him, especially considering that he has always had the most gorgeous wavy locks. It is troubling him so much that he is starting to just shave his head bald.

Now, I love him no matter what. It’s his head and I get that he has to deal with it. But I sure would love to be able to run my fingers through his hair just a little while longer.

By mabeT — On Jun 20, 2011

I have the hardest time deciding what kinds of haircuts I should get. The truth is that my face is very round shaped, and I feel like everything makes it look even rounder.

I had long hair for most of my life. It was actually down past my bottom all the way through college. Later, I had it cut to about halfway my back, and then it kept inching up.

I’ve tried up to my shoulders, but I’m scared to go up any further for the simple fact that I don’t want to look like a pumpkin! At the same time, my hair is also very thick and I could use a lot less hassle with it.

Anyone have any ideas about a lady looking for a cute haircut that doesn’t make her look like a big ole pumpkin head?

By popcorn — On Jun 20, 2011

There are so many different types of haircuts that have become famous after a stylish star has made them popular. One of the most notable cuts that I actually got was Victoria Beckham's graduated bob. I really think that style was amazingly chique and flattering.

I find that stars are also a good source for the latest hair coloring trends. While sometimes these don't always look the best on me, I love to see what stars do with wild colors. I think that the singer Pink had some fantastic coloring back when she was really using her name for all it was worth.

By manykitties2 — On Jun 20, 2011

If you are looking to try out different types of haircuts there are plenty of free programs online that let you upload your photo and try out different styles. This software is great because it can really good idea if a cut and color will match your face.

I often find it can be tough to judge from a magazine if a cut will flatter your face, or if a color will look good with your skin tone.

The photos you make with different hairstyles can also be saved and downloaded. I love having my picture on my smartphone and I can just show it to my stylist.

By subway11 — On Jun 20, 2011

@BrickBack - I wanted to say that I know that changing your hair drastically is stressful especially if you had the same style forever.

My stylist actually has a computer that shows you how you would look with a specific hair style so that you don’t have to risk getting a cut that doesn’t work for you.

They scan your picture and then layer different looks until you find what you like. It is really cool. My husband even found a different type of haircut for men that he wants to try.

By BrickBack — On Jun 20, 2011

@Mutsy - That is so true. I always bring in pictures of short hair styles that would actually make me look younger, but I always chicken out and only get my hair trimmed. I have had the same hair style for about ten years now and I am dying to change my long hair drastically and get a short hair style, but I never do.

I know that the hair will grow back, but I just can’t. I want to tell the stylist to cut it how she sees fit, but then I worry that I won’t like it. I really wanted to get a graduated bob because it looks so sleek, and maybe I can start with a regular layered bob and then go a little shorter after that. I will probably have to gradually go shorter because I am getting sick of the way my hair looks.

By mutsy — On Jun 20, 2011

@GreenWeaver - I know what you mean. I have long hair that tends to be course so it is difficult to style. I think that there are many lovely hairstyles out there but you have to find the right one that matches the shape of your face.

For example, if your face is fuller, I think that a long hair style with longer layers might elongate the face and make the style appear more flattering. I also think that adding bangs can make a woman appear to look younger. I think that sometimes people fall in love with a particular hair cut to find out that the style is really not suited for their face.

By GreenWeaver — On Jun 20, 2011

I love short hair cuts because they are so easy to maintain. I have curly hair and it is so much work to maintain a long hair style because I typically like to blow dry my hair straight and then use a hot iron to make my hair look sleek.

My husband really likes my hair this way, but it is so much work that I often wish I had a short hair style that was wash and wear. I used to have short hair when I was younger and it was flattering because to me it looks so polished. It also draws more attention to your eyes.

Diane Goettel

Diane Goettel

Former Writer

"Diane Goettel has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in English from Brooklyn College. Diane lives in Mount...
Learn more
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