Making Short Hair More Interesting

“I had my hair cut short for the first time a few months ago, and I love it. Not having to worry about bad hair days is marvellous. But I’m getting bored with it looking the same all the time! Since you’ve got short hair, too, I wondered if you’ve got any tips for making it look more interesting?”

I have, indeed, had short hair for years. In fact, it hasn’t been longer than my shoulder since about 2000. Now, some of these things will depend on the length of your hair at present, but here are some different ways to wear a short hairstyle.

Change the colour
This is probably the most drastic way to change your hair. You don’t need to do the whole thing if your work/school prefers you to look conservative or you’re just afraid to commit! You can always do a big streak across the front or put in some extensions. When I was 15 & had a blue-black bob (I was totally channelling Amy Blue in The Doom Generation), I would get extensions put in the front of it, hanging down on either side of my fringe (bangs to you Americans). They were the same length as the rest of my hair but provided a nice frame. The royal blue ones looked the best. Most hairdressers can put extensions in your hair for very little & it’s a quick, easy way to change your look. If you DO want to go blue, purple, bright red or neon yellow, read this first!

Wear hair accessories
They are your greatest ally. I have a drawer full of things to put in my hair: purple butterfly-shaped clips, turquoise feathers, small pink roses, tiaras & hairclips with all manner of things stuck on them, from glittery cupcakes to small ballerinas to Hello Kitty heads. Remember that it is incredibly easy to make your own hair accessories, usually all you need is a hot glue gun, a plain hairclip & stuff to stick onto it. Another option is to go slightly crazy & eke your way over to decora, a Japanese street style which involves wearing hundreds of little plastic toys all over yourself.

Cut yourself a fringe (bangs) or sweep them across
You might want to look at How To Choose A Flattering Haircut before you do this, because some face shapes don’t suit a fringe (bangs). If you sweep them across & they won’t stay, use a hairclip — try a diamante barrette. Sometimes keeping a fringe sitting flat is tough — some people swear by blow-drying it & curling it under with a brush, some use pomade & others use a combination of spit & crossed fingers. If you can pull it off though, a fringe is VERY cute.

Tease or spike it up
The bigger the better, baby! Teasing your hair is easy — grab a big clump, brush it towards the sky & then brush it back down towards your head. Repeatedly. Coat with hairspray (or talcum powder, I like Lush’s Candy Fluff for this purpose) & go out looking wild. Spiking it up is usually achieved with the aid of hair product, like KMS. You can try a little faux-hawk or just create a peak on the highest point of your skull.

Change the parting
Switch it up, from middle to either side or, if you’re handy with a comb, try one of those strange zig-zag partings.

Pin some of it up
My hair’s getting longer so I’m doing this quite a lot at the moment. I tease the hell out of it & then pin some of it behind my head. It somehow gives the appearance that I have far more hair than I do, which is always a good thing. To me, it looks like a weird mix between hobocore & elegance, & overall I’m pretty happy with the effect!

Put it into little pigtails
Self-explanatory, innit?! Use ribbons or lace for super plus plus cute effect.

Shave it!
Shave the side, or a pattern into the side, or shave your hairline back. All of these things have worked for me!

Wear a headscarf
Ahhh, yes. My trusty fallback position. When all else fails, when it is windy or raining, when your hair won’t behave or you have 5cm of regrowth (like me), just tie a scarf over your head. How To Wear A Scarf may be of some assistance, & so might How To Tie A Turban.