A Go-To Glossary for the Most Popular Hairstyles

A Go-To Glossary for the Most Popular Hairstyles
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Photo: ImaxTree/Allison Kahler

I once went to get my mid-back-length hair cut to the top of my shoulders, and things ended with me sobbing on FaceTime. I didn’t bring photos, didn’t have the names of cuts, and instead said something along the lines of, “I want it to sit on my shoulders,” and blindly nodded when she replied, “Oh, I totally know what you want.”

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I walked out of there with a bowl cut that barely grazed my chin. I broke down in the car and immediately ran to the grocery store for the miracle hair-growth pill biotin. Don’t be like me; know exactly what kind of haircut you want.

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And we have you covered for that. We talked to celebrity hairstylist Renato Campora, who has worked with stars such as Mila Kunis, Margot Robbie, and Sienna Miller. He gave us the hairstylist definitions for haircuts, so you’ll never be stuck in a sticky situation. Scroll through the list of hairstyles below, read Campora’s explanations, and know you’re next haircut is going to be bomb.

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STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Baby Bangs
Baby Bangs

"Known to be the super-short bangs, where the fringes are typically cut until mid-forehead. This style can be exhaustive to maintain."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Side Bangs
Side Bangs

"When your fringes are parted to either side, and it's often naturally angling down toward the cheek."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Curtain Bangs
Curtain Bangs

"This chic style came from the ’60s, and it means to center-part your fringes. This cut is suitable for many hair lengths and styles. However, it may require a bit of maintenance for wavy hair."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Straight Across Bangs
Straight-Across Bangs

"Refers to the hair cut to hang from your forehead, typically at or just covering the eyebrows."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Buzz Cut
Buzz Cut

"This cut is often seen in the military, and the general meaning is to cut the hair to less than 1/2 inch. However, there are plenty of other variations involving partial buzz cuts that can be very stylish."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Fade
Fade

"Popular among men, the fade is an aggressively tight taper, where hair is cut at the sides and back as close as possible with clippers and then tapers up into almost any length on top."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Undercut
Undercut

"Closely related to the curtained hairstyle of the ’90s, the undercut originated as a men’s hairstyle where the hair on top of the head is long and parted on either side or center, while the back and sides are buzzed very short."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Pixie
Pixie

"A pixie cut is a daringly short hairstyle where the hair is cut short on the back and sides, and slightly longer on top for a layering effect. The pixie cut first became popular in the ’50s and will make a reappearance every few generations."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Bob
Bob

"A bob cut is a short haircut that is typically cut straight around the head at jaw level. Some will opt for a bit of fringe or bangs at the front. Or you can easily create a sleek style similar to the look I did for Mila Kunis."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Lob
Lob

"The lob (or long bob) is simply a longer version of the bob cut. The hairline falls right along the collarbone and is perfect for all face shapes."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Face Frame Layers
Face-Framing Layers

"This cut frames the face and help define facial features and minimize others. Depends on different facial shapes, each style is made and cut differently to accentuate individual features."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Layers
Layers

"Cutting your hair in layers is great for giving the illusion of length and volume. Your stylist will arrange your hair into layers and cut the strands at the top shorter than the layers beneath."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Shag
Shag

"A shag cut is a layered hairstyle that has been cut to various lengths. The layers are often feathered at the top and sides to give the illusion of fuller hair around the crown. Around the edges, the hair thins to fringes."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Medium
Medium-Length

"Medium-length hair is a great way to get volume while leaving just enough to still create updos. This style is most flattering for most face shapes and is typically cut at the shoulder."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Long
Long

"Any hairstyle cut below shoulder length can be considered long hair. While longer hair may mean more upkeep, you can achieve many different styles with longer hair."

Photo: Imax Tree
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Asymmetrical
Asymmetrical

"The asymmetrical cut is a hairstyle that does not appear to have symmetry. One side is typically cut or appears to be longer than the others. An extreme variation is where one side of the head is totally or partially shaved."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | A-Line
A-Line

"The A-line haircut refers to the dramatic angle of the haircut. For this style, hair is cut shorter in the back, and angles to a longer front and frames the face. Additionally, this hairstyle will typically not have layers."

Photo: Getty Images
STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Blunt
Blunt

"A blunt cut is when a stylist cuts straight across with scissors. Often recommended for thin hair, a blunt cut can add weight and structure. The blunt cut is also used to hold the shape of a sleek and clean look."

Photo: Getty Images

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  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Baby Bangs
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Side Bangs
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Curtain Bangs
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Straight Across Bangs
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Buzz Cut
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Fade
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Undercut
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Pixie
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Bob
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Lob
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Face Frame Layers
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Layers
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Shag
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Medium
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Long
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Asymmetrical
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | A-Line
  • STYLECASTER | Hairstyle Glossary | Blunt
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