There's no question that '90s trends have made their way back into the beauty space.
Everything from long acrylic nails, bouncy blowouts, oversized scrunchies, and butterfly clips are taking over our Instagram feeds, and many of these trends have even made it to the red carpet. However, one look that doesn't need a reintroduction is the short haircut: a style that nearly every Black woman sported back in the day.
So whether you're more of a teenie weenie afro kinda girl, or you prefer a slicked back pixie, believe us when we say you won't have to compromise on styling options just because you've got a little less length, and some of our favorite celebritys' go-to stylists agree.
Here, we reached out to Monae Everett, as well as Larry Sims to ask them to share a few of their favorite short hairstyles for Black women, all of which are cute as hell — trust.
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Both Sims and Everett are fans of the pixie cut. And what's great about this style is you can customize it to match your unique vibe. Take Regina King's 2021 Met Gala pixie for example, which was personalized with a splash of color and a bold cut.
"On Regina King's hair, we used a deep royal blue to accent the hair," Sims shares. "It looked really chic and complimented her designer Michael Kors look. I love the messiness and effortlessness of the pixie look. It can be dressed up or down, which makes it very easy and versatile."
That said, there's always a way to make a pixie cut work for you — even if you've never imagined yourself with short hair. "Black women look amazing with short pixie cuts," says Everett. "Short relaxed hair will never go out of style."
Believe it or not, having shorter hair doesn't necessarily mean you need to use less products or even let go of your hot tools, especially if you prefer a slicked down finish.
"After cleansing and conditioning the hair, add a leave-in conditioner and wrapping foam to the hair to lay it down," explains Everett. "After allowing the hair to dry, add a light serum and use a small flat iron to curl and add detail. I recommend the BabylissPro Nano Titanium Mini Iron." Sims adds that the Flawless by Gabrielle Union Restoring Exotic Treatment can also be used to finish off the look for added shine and to avoid frizz.
As for the girls who want to keep their hair natural, we've got you covered as well. And Sims has a slew of product recommends from the haircare line he launched with friend Gabrielle Union.
"For upkeep, begin with cleansing hair with Flawless by Gabrielle Union Hydrating Detangling Shampoo followed by [the brand's] 3 Minute Restoring Conditioner. For tighter texture or color, use the 5 Butter Masque for extra hydration and moisture," says Sims. "Then apply Leave-In Detangling Conditioner to keep hair moisturized."
Going short doesn't mean you have to chop all of your hair off. 'Cause, you know, sometimes a girl still wants to be able to pull her hair back into a pony.
"I have always been a fan of ponytails, no matter what length. What a way to have some fun but still give a sleek, clean sophisticated look, as seen on actress Gabrielle Union for her Billboard Awards look," says Sims. "For this fall, we'll see more shorter ponytail lengths that feel very retro and fresh. Adding a flip to the ponytail gives a nod to 60's style."
Sims recommends starting off with a small amount of Flawless by Gabrielle Union Smoothing Blow Dry Cream and Shine Enhancing Heat Protection Spray to ensure a smooth, damage-free finish. Once you're done, gather the hair at whatever point you want to pony to start. "I like to position the ponytail between the middle and nape of the head to optimize the most swinging," he shares.
Next, use a hair tie to hold the hair in place, and add extensions if needed. For a sleek finish, grab your favorite jar of edge control gel, then swoop and swirl your baby hairs into place.
"[At night, I] suggest tying down the hair along the hairline with silk strip or a silk wrap to protect the hairline and preserve the look," Sims adds.
"The short stacked bob is always a crowd pleaser," says Everett. "This is a bob that is between ear and chin length, normally the back of the head is shorter."
And she's not kidding. The bob is truly a timeless look, can literally be created on any texture, and looks good on virtually everyone. So if you're thinking of getting a short cut but you're a little hesitant when it comes to taking the plunge, chopping your hair into a bob is one of the best ways to get your feet wet.
"After shampooing and conditioning, add a thermal protectant like the Biolage Thermal Active Spray before blowdrying the hair straight," Everett recommends. "Then use a flat iron to smooth the style."
You'll also need to visit your hairstylist every few weeks to get regular trims, unless you're looking to try out a lob, too.
Nearly every Black woman who has done the big chop has had a TWA, also known as a teenie weenie afro. This short crop is a great option for when you want less length, but still want to show off your gorgeous natural texture.
"This is the perfect look for women who want to opt out of heat styling tools in general," Sims adds. "The sharp cut and shape also makes it easy for maintenance."
"The Ouidad Coil Infusion Shampoo and Conditioner provide a strong foundation of clean and hydrated hair," says Everett.
In terms of styling, all you'll need are your hands and a few nourishing products. Yep, it's really that easy.
For Sims, he likes to start off with Flawless by Detangling Leave-in Conditioner, and Defining Curl Cream. Afterwards he recommends diffusing the hair and using your fingers to separate curls.
"Add the Flawless by Gabrielle Union Restoring Exotic Oil Treatment for a little shine," he adds. "Finish the look by slaying edges using our Repairing Edge Control."
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There's no question that '90s trends have made their way back into the beauty space.