Short Hair Do’s

January 14, 2014 | By | Comments (2)

Given what I do for a living, I ruminate over things like dramatically cutting my hair less than you’d think. My general view is, it’s just hair, it’ll grow back. I know all the stupid stereotypes about short hair (most of them centering around a woman’s femininity), but being a child of the ’70s, that makes me more apt to cut it. Stuff it, haters!

That said, once when I was feeling especially large and in charge in the late ’80s, I decided to get my hair cut really short. After doing so, I went into the record store next to the salon to buy my Flock of Seagulls album. The record-store owner (a bit of a lech, in retrospect) was way more distraught over my choppy crop than a person should be over things of serious import. “Why’d you do that to your beautiful hair,” he practically cried. Despite my feminist leanings, I was scarred.

But when my great friend and hair stylist Kevin Mancuso came over the other day, he noted that for my small face, and hectic life, short hair may be preferable. So I told him to go for it, while my son and daughter looked on. (Part of the impetus was for my 10-year-old daughter to see that you should do with your hair what’s best for you and no one else.) So he snipped his way to (what I consider to be) perfection. My new style does, indeed, show off my features and require less time and effort than my shoulder-length bob did. Most important, it makes me happy.


A few things to consider when going short:

1. Find a stylist who really knows you and your lifestyle before taking the plunge. Yes it’s only hair and it grows back, but you stand a far better chance of getting a look you won’t want to immediately grow out if you go to a stylist who really gets what you and your hair are capable of.

2. Bring pictures. Kevin and I looked at photos on my computer of Michelle Williams, Robin Wright-Penn, and Mick Jagger. I’m not kidding. A real pro like Kevin can translate the parts you like of other people’s cuts into a style that will work for you. Related: A real pro will NOT be offended by such guidance.

3. Prepare for the learning curve. You may want to change your makeup since the short hair exposes more of your face. You may also need new styling products and a new styling technique (or, in my case, no styling technique, just point dryer at head and shoot).

And here’s one that I just don’t know how to prepare you for: The back of your head will be itchy against your pillow, and your neck will itch against your scarf. I don’t know how men deal with this. I just scratch.

What’s your best short hair advice?

Thinking about chopping off your locks? Check out these short hair styles for inspiration.


  1. Kate

    As someone who has had short hair for a few years (and MANY bad haircuts), a few tips:

    – The photograph idea is a good one. Don’t assume your stylist knows what you want.
    – Make sure your stylist doesn’t cut the top layers of your hair too short or you’ll get cowlicks and pieces of hair that will never stay down.
    – Pay close attention to the hair at the nape of your neck. Some stylists like to leave a “tail” there that grows out into a healthy mullet in about a week. Make sure it’s gone.
    – When in doubt, ask the stylist to leave the front of your hair long-ish. Long bangs and short hair on the back of your head tends to be a little less dramatic and I think it’s more universally flattering…not everyone can pull off a Mia-Farrow-in-Rosemary’s-Baby

    This is just what worked for me…

    January 14, 2014 at 4:49 pm
  2. Paige

    I had short years for years and loved it but will never go back. It is far more high maintance than my longer hair and it is so difficult to grow back. I think about that every time I get the itch to cut it all off again.

    January 15, 2014 at 9:44 pm

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