please hope my hair
March 6, 2011 3:15 PM   Subscribe

I want a new haircut. Or hairstyle. Or something. I need advice.

Very thin brown/blonde hair, no chin. I wear glasses. Here is a picture.

I've been growing it out for a while, but I'm open to cutting it short. If I'm gonna keep growing it out, though, I need advice on how to tell the hairdresser to trim it so it looks a bit less shaggy in the meantime.

I need to look like a 23-year-old. I spent all of college dying my hair and now that I'm back to my natural hair color every time I look in the mirror I see my high school self.

Bonus points for style/accessory related tips.
posted by NoraReed to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (31 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Maybe an asymmetrical bob? I'd also look at getting some funky new glasses frames--a great way to spice up anyone's style.
posted by Go Banana at 3:20 PM on March 6, 2011

A bob with sideswept bangs would look great on you. Eyebrow grooming goes a long way towards looking grown up and put together, too.
posted by bonheur at 3:28 PM on March 6, 2011 [2 favorites]

Parting it to one side and getting a blunt cut (with or without bangs) would most likely look great. Example 1, 2, 3.
posted by oinopaponton at 3:29 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

I think a graduated bob could be very cute.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 3:29 PM on March 6, 2011 [3 favorites]

I have less chin than you, and I had hair of much the same texture as yours when I was your age. (It got wavier, but it took 20 years.) I found that a bob that was jaw-length in the front created the illusion of chin. That length will also frame your beautiful mouth.

If you grow your hair out, it's going to tend to get flatter as it gets longer because the fineness prevents it from bearing its own weight. If you can handle a "hair regimen", you can counter that somewhat with a layered cut and with a root volumizer, but if you can't, you are either going to have to embrace the flatness or you are going to need to go with shorter haircuts.

One cut to be careful about is the super-short butchy cut. I had one of these for a year or two and it made me look like my mouth was just stacked straight on top of my chest. Chinless *and* neckless. Plus hard to grow in. On the other hand, it was easy to care for and it was airy during the summer months.
posted by gingerest at 3:44 PM on March 6, 2011

I think you would look great with a shag haircut like this. Shag cuts work really well with fine hair.
posted by Houstonian at 3:53 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Mandy Moore with short hair. Another pic. I think this look will be best if you have at least a little bit of natural wave in your hair.

I love the ideas above.

I think you will look great with shorter hair. Shorter hair and products used wisely will make it look like you have more hair. You need a little bit of volume and texture to make it look fuller. I love Big Sexy Hair root pump mousse. Apply to showered roots around hairline and crown and then blow dry.

There are lots of tutorials on Youtube you might be interested in. Notice how this stylist applies the root lift mousse. This is how I do it. It's important to target the areas you wish to lift.

Here is one on choosing a stylist and best haircut ideas according to texture.
posted by Fairchild at 4:13 PM on March 6, 2011 [4 favorites]

You said "or something." Have you considered going red? I think you'd be a beautiful redhead; you totally have the skin tone for it.

Also, I heartily second ThePinkSuperhero's advice. That style would look great on you.

Good luck. And don't forget to post pics when you change up!
posted by heyho at 4:22 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Get a bob. I like the graduated suggestion, having it higher in the back makes it look chic rather than frumpy. That's the haircut I got when I had my "I look 16, not 22 argh this long hair is awful" moment.

The beauty of such a haircut is that it styles itself.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 4:33 PM on March 6, 2011

My old go-to for longer hair is just sideswept bangs and layers, which I think looks good on anyone. If you want to keep your hair at a longer length I think that's a safe cut to try, very difficult to mess up. I think a spiky bob(more like the link here and less like those awful kate gosselin pics, if you google the term) or something between a spiky and flipped bob could be cute. It does take some daily maintenance to style that, though.

PS I think you have very pretty features. Definitely get a cut that will accentuate--not hide/cover--them!
posted by sprezzy at 4:35 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I think you'd be a beautiful redhead; you totally have the skin tone for it.

I do, but I've been red on and off for the past four years (with brief interludes of pink and purple). Mostly I'm sick of the dying and re-dying upkeep, especially since red doesn't take well to my hair without bleaching the hell out of it first.

The spiky bob/graduated bob cut and that Mandy Moore one look interesting-- I might go for something like that. Keep up the suggestions though!
posted by NoraReed at 5:34 PM on March 6, 2011

Have you tried contact lenses? It's weird but I feel more put-together wearing them, and the confidence carries over into looking like a semblance of a grown-up.
posted by mimi at 5:50 PM on March 6, 2011

As long as we are offering you non-hair advice, I am going to go with "Don't wear necklaces that land exactly on your neckline of your shirt. Go longer, or shorter." Also, your lips are amazing! Go for broke and play them up a la Jolie.

And the hair? Graduated bob. It will change your life, even if you hate blow-drying or product.
posted by jenlovesponies at 6:00 PM on March 6, 2011

I also think a bob would look great on your and would suit your hair type! I have fine, straight hair too. I have mine cut into a chin length bob with a side part and a stacked back (meaning the back is in shorter, stacked layers). Kinda like this. You can google for "stacked bob" for more examples. The haircut alone definitely helped me go from looking 5-8 years younger than I am to looking more my age.
posted by geeky at 6:22 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I wore contacts for a while in high school but I really prefer how I look with glasses. I just feel more "me" with them. I think it's a psychological thing; they're sort of a metaphorical shield between me and the world. Also I have a death glare that involves looking over them and narrowing my eyes that's way less threatening if I don't have 'em.

That necklace thing is unusual-- I only pair those two together because I like the fleur-de-lis on them-- but I'll keep it in mind for the future.

How do I go about playing up my lips? I'm not made up at all in that photo. I do wear lipstick and/or gloss, but I'm not exactly an expert at it, so if anyone has shade/brand suggestions I'd appreciate it :)
posted by NoraReed at 6:37 PM on March 6, 2011

nthing the graduated bob. I have a similar face shape and hair type and just got a graduated bob a couple of weeks ago. I've been getting a ton of compliments and its super easy to deal with.
posted by peppermind at 6:41 PM on March 6, 2011

Agreeing with all that a structured bob would look great, and depending on the cut and your patience level, could be low-maintenance, too. I think you could work bangs into it really well (though I admit I am a bangs-wearer 4 LYFE, so I'm biased). As someone else with chin issues, I will recommend that no matter what you do, make sure that any hair framing your face does not get cut shorter than your chin. Bangs will be fine, but everything else should be just below the chin or longer. Otherwise it's all "HEY LOOK AT MY SQUISHY FAAAAAACE!" Sorry, bad personal experience.

In terms of playing up your lips, maybe try some lip liners (to emphasize shape) and some bright shades if you are comfortable wearing lipstick. I think you could do berry colors, but go to a Sephora or Mac store for color suggestions. Try to find glosses that aren't too sticky; beautiful lips with just a hint of gloss look really great, but it's a total pain if the gloss is so sticky that your hair keeps dragging it across your face! You might also have success with Clinique's Black Honey Almost Lipstick. It looks super dark in the tube, but it comes out this awesome shade that's like your own lips, but just a bit brighter. It makes you look a bit more polished with minimal effort. We have similar skin tone, so I think it could work for you. Have fun!
posted by Fui Non Sum at 7:15 PM on March 6, 2011

I have similar hair texture/thinness, and I chose a stylist who recommended the sort of thing that's been mentioned above: unevenly edged bob, angled bits, sometimes razored, around chin-length. It's kind of hard to have a bad hair day now, because it's just that flexible. If I don't want to wash it that day, I style it up for sleekness and touch it up with a flat iron. I use a root booster spray when it's wet, and no other products, save a touch of hair spray on my bangs occasionally. I'm still pretty impatient and clueless when it comes to hair, but this has made me feel more stylish. You can see it in my mefi profile in my twitter avatar.
posted by artifarce at 7:50 PM on March 6, 2011

By the way, I like the glasses and have similar opinions about wearing my own as you. I think they look good on you and keep on rocking them as an accessory if that's what you like.
posted by artifarce at 7:51 PM on March 6, 2011

Yes to choppy/graduated/layered bob sort of deal -- I have your hair, and the layering = much easier to deal with, much less straight-and-stringy. Also very easy to deal with; wash and wearable, but a tiny fiddle with a curling iron will make it look "done." (My hair, for what that's worth. But you might look hella cute in a 20s-style bob)

I'd shape the brows a bit, and go for a sheer red on the lips. Something low-fuss but colourful. Laura Mercier HydraTint in Crimson, Korres Lip Butter in Wild Rose, Neutrogena Lip Sheers in Ruby Bliss

In my view glasses help one look 'done.' A bit of a grown-up's lip colour, powder, shaped brows, swipe of mascara, glasses, and I'm good to go. Perhaps you might enjoy more aggressive frames? Big plastic hipster glasses are fun!
posted by kmennie at 8:10 PM on March 6, 2011

It's like you stole my hair! My hair, when it gets long, gets even straighter and eventually gets stringy. Some version of a short or shaggy bob works best for me, too.

(That Mandy Moore pic is super cute, but I suspect your hair isn't thick or curly enough for that.)
posted by bluedaisy at 8:10 PM on March 6, 2011

Nthing a layered bob of some variety. I have fine hair with a soft wave, and I've been playing with a lot of different bob shapes over the past few years (gravitating most strongly to graduated and stacked). I've only had one that I wasn't extremely happy with (and I was still happy enough with it, for the most part). It really is a pretty effortless way to look more polished.

My hair is similar to your natural color, I think, and one of my favorite things about getting a fresh shorter cut is that the change in volume really highlights the blonde in my hair. This tends to be greatly offset if I have to use product, which makes my hair look darker (though possibly I'm just ham-handed with using product - I try as much as possible to get away without using it at all). YMMV, but a shorter cut that minimizes product use might help brighten up your hair some if you want to take a break from coloring it.

When you're ready for new glasses, you might want to try on some frames that are a bit less wide than the ones you have now. I like the half-frames and the shape, but it looks to me like they might be just a little on the large side for your features (though the angle of the picture and where they're sitting on your nose might be creating that impression), which makes you look younger. I bet you'd look good in a cat's-eye frame, too, if you like that shape at all. But yeah, rock the glasses. And the death glare.
posted by EvaDestruction at 8:11 PM on March 6, 2011

Response by poster: Oh and for reference here's what I looked like with REALLY long hair and cat's-eye glasses.
posted by NoraReed at 9:25 PM on March 6, 2011

I'd avoid any sort of cut that has long bangs past the top of your glasses. They don't look right with glasses and have an annoying tendency to get behind the glasses and in your eyes.
posted by yohko at 9:34 PM on March 6, 2011

It kills me to say this but: graduated bob, Posh style. You have the exact same hair as my sister. Hers is basically straight as a board and there is no point in pretending that it will ever be anything but because it laughs at any hair product designed to give it more body.

And I like the glasses, too - I am similarly attached to mine! (Also I hate contacts.) I do have my eyebrows done; I think it makes a lot of difference in looking grownup and professional and sort of... polished.
posted by DarlingBri at 10:21 PM on March 6, 2011

Your hair is beautiful. I love your natural color. Please do not dye it. A shorter cut would look so cute. You have a great face and pretty features. I agree with above poster -- have your brows waxed by a professional and use a bit of mascara and sheer lipstick.
posted by Fairchild at 4:58 AM on March 7, 2011

Response by poster: I do the hair and the lipstick and other makeup stuff because it's fun and I like it, but there's really no way I'm doing the eyebrow waxing thing. I'm not at all dedicated enough to the current standards of female beauty to allow a stranger to put something sticky onto my face and then rip some hair out.
posted by NoraReed at 11:45 AM on March 7, 2011 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: I'll do pictures when the light is better, but I went in with the Meg Ryan picture from upthread and came out with... well, if you've seen Season 4 of Buffy, where Willow cuts her hair sorta short? Like this? It looks like that.
posted by NoraReed at 11:12 PM on March 7, 2011

No, I wouldn't go near a stranger with wax either, and am with you on generally finding that a little weird. But a couple of minutes with tweezers... Meh, you may like the effect, you may not, but ditching just a small number of eyebrow hairs = big difference.

Here's a brow before and after in annoying slideshow format. How to page.
posted by kmennie at 8:59 AM on March 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

I agree about the eyebrows- to me, they're what makes people look grown up more than any other one thing . I don't like wax either. Call around til you find someone who will tweeze you the first time and then just copy that yourself from then on out. For me it usually involves trimming the longest ones with scissors, too.

For lips I use a skin-tone (not lip-tone) liner to define where I want my lips to end, and then fill in with a gloss or lipstick. The skin-tone lipliner is much easier to deal with: you don't have to have as exact a hand, and it goes with every color of lipstuff.
posted by small_ruminant at 4:40 PM on March 10, 2011

The light is much better now, no? We'd like our photo, please!
posted by heyho at 3:13 PM on May 12, 2011

« Older What kind of domain should I reserve for myself?   |   I'm sorry, I can't hear you over the sound of how... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.