Goodbye Pixie, Hello New You
Maybe you've had the same old tired cut for years now, and you're looking to change it up. Or maybe you've got a big upcoming event like a wedding, and you've saved a hundred Instagram pictures of different updos. Whatever the reason, even the most seasoned pixie cut veteran may find herself longing one day for the opportunity for some new hairstyles; hairstyles that all involve length. Don't despair pixie chicks; we've put together a ton of tips to help you get through even the worst stages of growing your do out. Read below for the tools you'll need, the steps you'll take, and all the tricks and secrets to help you look your very best month in, month out, and all the stages in between. We've also included our favorite pixie and bob pictures from around the web so you can get a few ideas of different short hairstyles you might want to try.
Is Growing Out a Pixie Cut Right For You?
Step one is to take a good, hard look at what sort of hairstyles are going to fit your life. Do you want something low maintenance or do you have plenty of time in the morning to style your do before you head out the door? Do you care more about how your face is framed, or having hair that stays out of your face and out of your way? Finally, is there anything in particular you'd like your cut to do for you? Do you want enough length for an updo? Always wanted to do french braid pigtails? Or are you looking for form over function?) Thinking about all this prior to growing your hair out will help you decide where you'll stop in the growing process. You might be looking for shoulder length or longer hair, or a cute bob might be more your style. You might even decide you want to stay with shorter hairstyles, but a little longer and shaggier than you have right now (take a look at later pictures of Anne Hathaway). And as you'll see, having an end goal in mind will help you charge through the mullet stages of your pixie growing out. A good way to get inspiration is to look at a variety of pictures of post-pixie cuts on social media. A lot of celebs have played around with the pixie growing process and finding someone with similar facial features as you will give you an idea of what you'll look like with different hairstyles. And if you're looking for a low maintenance cut that will minimize your styling and shower time, you might want to think about whether the pixie cut actually is the best option for you. There's nothing wrong with sticking to what you know.
Get the Right Post-Pixie Tools
Before you begin, you'll want to make sure you have a few key tools and products on hand to get you through each month. These will help you keep your hair looking fresh, fun, and healthy, a vital part of the pixie growing process. You probably already have a few of these at home in your cabinets. If not, remember that all products are not created equal, and consult your favorite hairstylist or do a quick search for reviews to find the best product and tools for you.
Small Curling Iron
You might already have a curling iron at home, but chances are it is way too large for what you need. Short hair means there is not a lot of length to work with, so you'll need a small iron (think about 1/4 inch). This will help you not only curl those flyaways, but curls or waves will give some texture and depth to your evolving hairstyle. Curling hides a multitude of sins as well, such as uneven growth, a funky cut, or that weird stage where your hair is just barely over your ears.
Much like the curling iron, you'll want a smaller flat iron to tame wild hairs and redirect stray strands. Using a smaller tool is practical; it will straighten hair while still allowing you room to grab onto the hair and manipulate each section of your growing pixie cut. This will ultimately make your styling session more efficient (and be much less frustrating for you).
Accessories are king when you're talking about growing out a pixie. These will allow you to style your hair in a hundred different ways, isolate sections of hair, and even do a partial updo as your hair gets longer. Without these accessories, you're at the mercy of your pixie cut, which will get funkier looking the longer it gets. A short list of accessories you might want to keep handy includes: Bobby pins (an absolute must!) Hair clips Hair bands or scarves Fun accents like bows or jeweled combs All these will allow you to pull back, twist up, or otherwise tame parts of your style that aren't behaving while adding a cute and unique touch to your hairstyles.
Most people (especially pixiers) will already have several products at their disposal since most pixies can't be tamed without a little outside help. But you're going to want to pick up some products that have specific functions, such as adding moisture or volume to your locks. You'll definitely want to talk to your stylist and get recommendations on what to buy; there are a million choices out there, and some companies are known for their curl products while some might be better for texturizing. A few products to consider are: Basic sprays or cremes for short to medium length hair: you'll definitely want to stock up on some moisturizing oil, volumizing mousse, and texturizing pomade (all of these can be used during all stages of your pixie growing time). Quality conditioner: we can't say it enough, moisture moisture moisture. Dry shampoo: shampooing reduces the oil and moisture in your hair and can make your style look frizzy and dry. Dry shampoo will remove the grease while still leaving your hair soft.
Spray bottle with water
For morning frizz or to settle those flyaway hairs, spritz your hair with a fine mist of water, then secure the strands with a bobby pin to train them back into place. Using the spray bottle will allow you to skip the shower, and it will help you reduce the amount of dry shampoo you need. You can even follow up with additional products (like a sea salt spray) to give your hair a wavy, beachy sort of look.
Pixie Growing Stages
There are some noticeable stages of hairstyles while you're growing your pixie out each month. These might include such stages as the shaggy pixie, the "Joan of Arc" pre-bob, and the true bob. In between those stages though, it's difficult to determine what your hair will possibly look like. Everyone's hair grows at a different pace, and there will probably even be a difference between how fast the different sections of your hair grow. The front of your hair might grow much faster than the hair at the back of your head or vice versa. Don't get discouraged though, growing your pixie out is definitely one case where the saying "it'll get worse before it gets better" rings true. There are a few things you can do to make these in-between stages a little less painful (the first of which is avoiding pictures).
Take Care of Your Growing Hair
First things first, taking care of your hair and keeping it healthy is the most important step of this whole process. Split ends and frizz are way more noticeable when you're growing out your hair (especially if it's the hair around your face). There's just so little of it that it's easy to spot the parts of your hair that need a little TLC. The biggest problem is when your hair is too dry; it'll be easy to see that it lacks shine or a smooth texture. To ensure your hair stays silky soft and moisturized, make sure you don't wash it every day. Instead of shampooing daily, you can use a dry shampoo to remove any grease (just don't overuse it or you'll suffer from product buildup). If you want or need your hair wet for styling, you can skip the shampoo and instead just use conditioner. Or skip both and use your spray bottle filled with water to spritz and tame any post-bedhead flyaways. Another common problem is going overboard and using way too much product -- either dry shampoo or any of your moisturizing oils, mousses, or pomades. Do this, and you risk making your hair look heavy, weighted down, and worst of all, greasy, the opposite of what you want. Your style should look breezy, light and fun, not like it needs a good scrub.
Don't Be Afraid to Make the Cuts (Or the Trims)
We mentioned before that all hair is not equal, and therefore not all hair grows at the same rate. You'll eventually reach a month where the hair on the back of your head is much, much longer than that growing in the front or sides of your head (some like to call this your "Mullet Month"). As you grow out your pixie cut, plan on going in for regular trims. Your stylist can help you keep things equal length, or add layers to help disguise the different growth rates. Frequent trims will also keep your hair split end free, making your hair look healthier and stronger.
Styling Tips For Growing Out A Pixie Cut
Unfortunately, we can't tell you exactly what you need to do each day to get the perfect post-pixie do. But we can tell you a few different things to think about as you grow and style your hair. The key is to use all the tools and accessories at your disposal to create a unique look that works for you, whether that may be curls, sleek hair, waves, or a partial updo with twists and braids. Now is your time to experiment and discover new and fun hairstyles as hair changes each day. For a selection of suggestions on how to maximize your post-pixie style, read the tips below.
If you've always parted your hair the same way, there's never been a better time to experiment with something new, especially as you gain new length. Try parting off center, down the middle, or down one side (above the ear) for a new and fun take on your hairstyle. If you've had the same part for a long time, you might need the help of a few well-placed bobby pins to keep your hair parted correctly.
Maybe one of the biggest changes you can play around with as your hair grows out is the addition of bangs. Many girls consider bangs, only to be scared off by the thought of how much work they'll be each day. Your hair is growing out already, so when you go in for a trim from your stylist, consider adding side or front bangs to your style. If you don't like them, you're already in the process of growing your hair out anyway (and you'll probably find that they actually grow faster than the rest of your hair).
Interested in the unique color craze that's been sweeping the web lately? There's never been a better time to experiment with unique shades. Whether you've always wanted to be a blonde or you're looking for something a little more radical, growing out your pixie cut is a great time to try something a little different. If you don't like it, you're growing out your hair anyway. And since you'll be getting regular trims from a hairstylist, it shouldn't be long before the color is gone (especially if you dye or bleach it early on). Trimming will also cut out the dye and bleach-damaged portions of your hair as it grows out, so your final style should be a healthy and full head of natural hair.
Remember all the accessories we suggested earlier? They'll all come in handy as you start styling your new hair. Bobby pins will help you pin back longer sections, while you can use clips and bands to secure hair that you've twisted or braided back. A fabric covered headband will help keep your new, longer sections out of your face, and a scarf will protect your hair (and the products in it) from windy and rainy days. And if nothing else is working, a jeweled hair accent can help draw the eye away from the more awkward hair sections as your pixie grows out.
Sleek and chic is always in, especially when short hair is concerned, but as your hair grows out, you'll want to add plenty of volume to keep your hair looking fun and light. Use a volumizing mousse and some gentle teasing with a comb to gain depth and volume to rock your new shaggy do.
There's Always the Artificial Option
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If you just can't even handle the awkwardness of the post-pixie-to-bob phase (and you have a healthy cash flow), you can always look into extensions or a wig. Both will cost you a pretty penny, but they will give you the instant length and the long hair you've been craving. This is a great option too for those that want to stay with shorter hairstyles but want longer hair for a one-time event. There's no sense in spending months growing your hair out and getting trims when you just want longer hair for a few key pictures.
Push Through the Growing Pains
Make no mistake; growing out a pixie cut is not for the weak or faint of heart. It will cost money for the products and trims, time for your hair to grow, and a lot of frustrating mornings as you attempt to tame your do. But if you keep your goal hairstyle in mind and keep forging ahead, you'll arrive on the other side with a fabulous, healthy head of hair. Plenty of people before you have gotten frustrated and quit, chopping their hair off when they were so close to the finish line. So just remember that this is all temporary (and keep in mind that no one will remember your shaggy mullet in a few months). And if you're beyond frustrated and nothing else works, remember the ultimate power of a cute and well-fitted hat!
The Final Takeaway
By doing some quick research, gathering your tools, and deciding on your goal hairstyle before you start, you'll be well prepared to begin the process of growing your pixie cut out. Use the time along the way to play with different styling tricks and products, and discover what works best for you. You can turn what might be an awkward and frustrating time into one where you really find out what looks and hairstyles you like. Just remember to take care of your hair along the way, and you'll come out with a beautiful look that's sure to turn heads.