The Pixie Cut Definition:
A pixie cut is a very short hairstyle for women. Usually, the hair is cut to about half an inch at the back and sides of the head and kept a little longer on top. It’s often cropped in layers to create a tousled effect, but it can also be sleek, slicked back, spiked, curled…the options are nearly endless.
Pixie cuts are hot right now, with dozens of Hollywood A-listers embracing the low-maintenance, yet versatile ‘do. They’re modern and edgy—perfect for on-the-go women who want to make a serious statement. And they’ll make you feel sexy, beautiful, and charming—a pixie exudes confidence and gets people to notice you. You get the perfect blend of femininity and strength with a good pixie cut.
Pixie cuts are a great mix of timeless and trendy. Think of Audrey Hepburn or Mia Farrow. Those classic styles look beautiful in any decade. But you can also mix it up and make it “now” with bright color, funky highlights, an asymmetrical undercut or a faux-hawk.
Pixie Cut Pics:
Pixie Cut Maintenance:
Pixie cuts can be the ultimate low-maintenance, wash-and-go style. They take less time, less product (including shampoo and conditioner), less hassle. Forget spending half an hour blow-drying and flat-ironing!
To maintain your pixie, you’ll want to head to the salon every 4-6 weeks. But if you want to take a little more time between visits, growing out a pixie can be fun. You’ll get to experiment with even more style options.
The Pixie Cut Fashion Style:
Pixie cuts can be worn casually, or dressed up for special occasions. They work great for women with active lifestyles who want to look chic at the gym or pilates studio, or for women who need to look polished and put-together, whether that’s for special events or presentations at work. Busy moms also love pixie cuts: it means less time in front of the mirror styling and more time chasing your kids (plus, less hair for tiny fingers to grab and yank).
Bold cuts go well with bold makeup. Don’t be afraid to rock some red lipstick or dramatic smokey eyes with a pixie cut.
Styling a Pixie Cut:
You’d think that with less hair to work with, your styling options with a pixie are limited. Au contraire! Pixie cuts offer endless variety, from a tousled pixie with longer layers on top to a simple style with cropped bangs to messy spikes (work that molding paste in!).
Go short and piecey for a casual tomboy-ish look. Longer layers can be glamorous and elegant. An asymmetrical pixie is fun and a little sassy. An undercut is daring and edgy. But all of them highlight a confident attitude and bold personality. Women often say they feel liberated or empowered after getting a pixie cut for the first time—there’s no hair weighing them down or holding them back.
You can have a lot of fun styling your pixie cut in different ways—and because there’s not as much hair, even a polished style won’t take much time. Because of the variety and versatility, pixie cuts can work for almost anyone. If you have thick hair, you’ll get tons of texture and volume. A pixie cut for fine hair can add dimension, making it look thicker and fuller. Pixie cuts can even work with curly or wavy hair, but require more finesse and precision in the cut and possibly a little more work to style. They also make it easy to experiment with color—if you’re make a bold move with the cut, you might as well go all in and really have fun.
Another point in favor of these short styles: they work for any age! A pixie cut brings maturity to a younger woman but gives an older woman a youthful vibe.
And let’s face it: pixie cuts are almost necessary for Southern California summers. Chop off that hair and feel the ocean breeze on your neck! Ahhhh.
The Pixie Cut Personality Fit:
These cuts really complement outgoing extroverts and bold personalities. A pixie cut demands attention and announces, “I’m ready for business. I’m not here to mess around.” You’re ready to take on the world.
Many women choose a pixie cut after a significant change in their life (like Emma Watson after the Harry Potter movies were done, signaling a new chapter after being Hermione for a decade). A dramatic new look can also accompany a personal change you’re working on or about to make. If you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone—and scream that to the world—a pixie cut is the way to go.
Pixie cuts also work well for artistic, creative women. If you like to express yourself in different ways, whether it’s painting, singing, writing, whatever, a pixie cut can encourage even more creativity.
Face Shapes For Pixie Cuts:
Pixie cuts tend to look best on oval, square, and heart-shaped faces. Your hair really becomes a frame for your face, drawing attention to your eyes and cheekbones and away from a long jaw line. Think about what features you’d like to highlight with your cut.
If you have a square or round face shape, don’t despair. Pixie cuts can work for you, but you need to know what you want. A woman with a round face can try a style with longer layers and height on top to elongate the face. Soft layers work well on women with square faces.
History Of The Pixie Cut:
Audrey Hepburn is often credited with first making the pixie cut popular in the 1950s (her European princess character in Roman Holiday got the dramatic haircut in the film). But Josephine Baker, an American actress and entertainer sported a ultra-glam, slicked down short ‘do all over Paris in the 1920s and 1930s. You can also see the short “flapper cuts” of the 1920s as precursors to the pixie.
Once Hepburn went short and chic, other leading ladies followed. Actress and dancer Leslie Caron reportedly delaying filming of 1955’s An American in Paris because she insisted on cutting her locks short. Jean Seberg wore a super short crop to play Joan of Arc in Saint Joan in 1957, and a slightly longer pixie style in Breathless in 1960.
Legendary stylist Vidal Sassoon invented the iconic “five point cut” in 1965, first modeled by Vogue fashion editor Grace Coddington. In 1966, stylist Leonard Lewis made supermodel Twiggy famous when he gave her an experimental new short cut. Actress Mia Farrow and “It Girl” Edie Sedgwick also rocked pixie styles in the 1960s.
By the 1970s, the pixie cut and other short haircuts were getting even more common. Goldie Hawn on Laugh-In, singer Liza Minelli, and figure skating star Dorothy Hamill showed the variety and flexibility offered by these cuts.
Even as the pixie cut grew in popularity, it still kept a little “shock” value—millennials probably remember the reactions and backlash when Keri Russell cut her long, curly tresses on the 90s TV show Felicity.
Now, it seems like celebrities with pixies might outnumber those with longer locks. Or at least, nearly every Hollywood starlet gives short hair a try at some point, whether it’s for a role or just to change up her look.
Celebs Who Have Worn The Pixie Cut:
Miley Cyrus, Kelly Osbourne, Emma Watson, Robin Wright, Rihanna, Michelle Williams
The Pixie Cut Test To See If It Fits You:
Pull your hair back in a tight ponytail and see how your face pops with hair off of it and off your neck. Bring your stylists pictures both of what you like and what you don’t like. If you’re not quite ready for a full crop, work in baby steps the next few times you go to the salon. Take a little more length off each time so you can adjust to the different styles. You’ll probably want to go all-in with a pixie sooner than you’d expect!