Beauty

Summer haircut trends: we speak to the experts about the most popular lockdown hairstyles

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Kiran Meeda
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A lady getting her hair cut in a salon

Still looking for inspiration for that post-lockdown haircut? Not sure which hairstyle, cut or colour you’ll get? We asked the experts to share their most requested hair trends right now.

It’s been almost three months since that fateful day in April 2021, when salons were officially allowed to safely re-open their doors once again. Since then, bookings have been through the roof but if you’re still yet to get your next appointment in the diary because you’re not sure what to go for, don’t fret.

Maybe you’re torn between going for an almighty trim or sticking to a fairly subtle change. Or, now that your hair is finally back in the hands of the experts, do you opt for a completely drastic change?

To give you some ideas, Stylist spoke with some of the industry’s leading hair stylists and salon owners to bring you the six looks that have been popular this far and that they predict will be asked for throughout summer and beyond. Prepare for some serious inspiration.

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  • Enhancing natural texture

    After months of skipping the styling tools, renowned hair stylist Larry King predicts that many of us will be wanting to maintain the natural texture we’ve been embracing during lockdown. Hair stylist Charlotte Mensah echoes this: “Irrespective of client’s texture, I think they will favour any look that emphasises their natural texture.” For some that will mean adding layers to create volume and movement. For others, it’ll simply mean a subtle trim to refresh an overgrown head of hair, but whichever camp you fall into, just know it’ll be the start of your journey to your healthiest hair yet.

  • The soft french fringe

    Daisy Edgar-Jones in Normal People.
    Daisy Edgar-Jones in Normal People.

    Normal People was at the top of most of our lockdown TV binge lists during lockdown 1.0, and it wasn’t only Connell’s chain causing mass hysteria and a gaining a cult following: Marianne’s fringe did too, which is still – almost a year on – being reflected in salon requests. “People want a choppy fringe with shorter disconnected layers that highlight the cheekbones” says King. Easier to style and requiring less maintenance than a full fringe, it’s a win/win situation really.

  • Contrasting block colour

    Dua Lips 2020 Grammys blue eyeshadow
    Mercury Prize shortlist: Dua Lipa.

    The trend for clashing tones started to take off pre-lockdown, courtesy of Dua Lipa and her bold blonde fringe, pictured above. Without the guidance of a pro, it was virtually impossible to recreate at home, especially considering how tricky bleach is to get right. But if you’re looking for a bold change at your next appointment, the tone-on-tone trend is one to bear in mind. “It really emphasises the contrast between the highlight and bronze and it’s seriously uplifting,” says Redken ambassador, Harriet Muldoon.

  • Brighter braids

    Braids will still reign supreme, but this time with a major twist. “I think we’re going to be seeing them really, really long with colour,” says hairstylist Lorraine Dublin. Whether it’s a full head of yellow or a mixture of blue and pink, bold, bright colours are making a statement this summer.

  • The glossy balayage

    While balayage remains a popular look, this summer it’s getting a slight update. “People want something that’s more blended and that looks a bit softer. Putting a gloss over the top of a balayage adds an extra dimension of colour, adds high shine and brings out the tone,” says King. Plus, it’s super easy to achieve – it’s just a case of asking your stylist to add a gloss over the top of your balayage.

  • Natural free styles

    Mensah is seeing lots of requests for cornrow sets, bantu knots, plaits and twists, too – and for good reason. “These natural free styles allow hair to be worn loose and free for a week or two without having to shampoo, condition or apply products daily,” she says. And any style that means regular wash routines can be skipped? We’re into them.

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Images: Getty images and BBC images.

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Kiran Meeda

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