As a New York native, it may be biased to say that the best trends are born here, but between the chic looks hitting the streets and the latest spa treatments coming from the Upper East Side, it’s hard to deny the city’s appeal. As we’re officially a month into 2023, we asked four hairstylists to share the haircuts everyone in NYC is asking for right now. After a quick scroll through, you’ll probably be setting up an appointment ASAP (and we don’t blame you).
7 Haircut Trends Happening in New York Right Now
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1. Butterfly Cut
Lest you think we were leaving the butterfly cut behind in 2022, the ‘70s inspired ‘do is still going strong because it’s essentially two haircuts in one. You’ll find short layers on top (ending a few inches below the chin) and longer layers on the bottom (just past the shoulders for soft movement). “New Yorkers are looking for cuts that are low-maintenance. With this one, it’s not going to be too obvious when your hair starts to grow too long because the layers are very graceful. Although I don’t recommend waiting too long to get your haircut again, you can still get away with going a little bit longer between trims,” says Knoll.
To style your haircut, Knoll has one simple tip: “Use a lightweight hair oil because with this cut you want your hair to be smooth, shiny and glossy. I use 1-2 drops of oil and apply it directly to wet hair. I’ll then add a styling lotion for more control before using a large round brush to blow dry the front pieces away from the face.”
2. Octopus Haircut
Another trend still making its rounds in NYC: the octopus haircut. This classic cut is rounder and more voluminous on top and spreads out on the bottom like tentacles. “It’s a haircut that feels like the ‘70s rocker haircuts [from the past]. It’s a little shaggy with heavy layers around the face and the crown of the head, and it gives edgy vibes but can be styled softer with a round brush,” shares Buckett. Plus, all you need is a mousse and a heat protectant to keep it coiffed, according to the stylist. After your wash routine, apply both products to your strands before using a heat tool (like a blow dryer or flat iron) to finish.
3. The Bullet Bob
Bobs continue to be an essential style for those of us who live in this bustling city. While blunt and bottleneck bobs were all the rage last year, bullet bobs are taking a front seat this season. “The bullet bob is the perfect next step for people who are growing out the ‘wolf cut.’ It’s one length and usually has fringe that’s cut long or short. You can also add some details around the face to mix it up a bit,” shares Cruz. A modern take on the blunt cut, the pro recommends a texture spray (or cream) to define and shape your strands.
4. A Modern Gamine
While some city dwellers are rocking longer manes these days, others are opting for shorter ‘dos. This particular cut experiments with length and layers for an edgier finish. “The modern gamine is basically the same length everywhere, except the edges around the face, ears and neck are shorter. It’s a very strong, sophisticated and bold look,” explains Knoll. And if you’re searching for a low-maintenance haircut to try in 2023, Knoll notes a wax (or gel) is all you need with this style. “This cut is highly styled on its own, so you don’t have to do much additional styling at all,” he adds. Whether you want to rock a slicked-back style or add some texture to your ends, a little product can help you achieve any look.
5. Blown Out Waves
This chic style is definitely going to turn heads in the Big Apple. “I’m seeing a lot of the cool girls around New York embracing a soft blowout with waves. It should look like it was done with a round brush and blow dryer, as opposed to a curling iron so the finished look is softer,” explains Cruz. Note: A styling mousse is key to creating lift at the roots and bringing out long-lasting waves that last all day. If you want even more volume, Cruz suggests using a hot roller set and following these simple rules that won’t have you missing the train in the morning. “To set your rollers, place one at the crown to lift the roots, and add the rest of them around the perimeter of your head in an alternating pattern, wrapping a few rollers under and the others going over to get the most voluminous finish,” explains Cruz.
6. '90s Shag
Yup, NYC is still very much in love with the shag haircut and Knoll says it has a lot to do with the supermodels of the ‘90s (like Cindy Crawford, for example). “Hairstyles that were popular in the ‘90s have never gone out of style. Women in NYC continue to love these ‘90s supermodel looks and are still asking for these cuts today in the salon. We’re drawn to this kind of messy and casual style that’s also healthy and shiny-looking,” says Knoll. “
To nail this look, it’s all about layers, layers and more layers. Knoll shares the shag style will look different for each person based on your hair type, length and face shape. He adds, “There should be enough layers all around so they open up the face and accentuate the cheekbones. It’s also best for those with medium to thick hair to define your natural texture and add volume.”
7. Pixie Haircut
If the modern gamine isn’t short enough, a pixie haircut might be what you’re looking to sport in 2023. “The New Yorker has no extra time and always has somewhere to go. You’ll definitely save time in the bathroom with a pixie cut. It’s effortless and trendy, so I’m sure you’ll be seeing this hair all over the city,” shares DePaca. Once you get your fresh cut, the easy part is the maintenance. Aside from monthly trims (which is the biggest part of maintaining this otherwise breeze style), you just need some use texturizing products to add shine and definition to your look. “A short cut doesn’t need to be intimidating. As long as you take into consideration the face shape for each client, and add softer details around the hairline and neck, it can be a flattering look for anyone,” adds DePaca.'
OK, I’m Ready For a Haircut. What Should I Ask My Stylist?
The best thing to do is communicate with your stylist about everything. Tell them exactly what you want and start by showing them some visuals. (We’ve got seven references above to get you started).
Now, march into your appointment with your head held high and get ready to show off your new look at your next NYC shindig.
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