Choppy haircuts never appear to go out of style.
The word choppy means uneven, so in terms of hairstyling, it means the hair is made to look different lengths, so it is softer or gives a more textured look.
One of the main advantages of choosing a choppy haircut is that they are easy to maintain. The messy nature of a choppy effect means the less time you spend perfecting it, the better it will look.
Short choppy haircuts feature textured layers and jagged ends for a modern, edgy look. Popular styles include the short stacked haircut, the pixie cut with shaved nape, the messy bob for fine hair, the feathered pixie with a V-undercut nape, the asymmetrical pixie with side bangs, and more.
Who Can Wear A Choppy Haircut?
A choppy hairstyle is different from a haircut that is simply layered. Layered hair also is cut into different lengths but may not have a choppy appearance. When we refer to choppy hair, we are talking about how bluntly the ends are cut and how much weight is taken out after the hair is dried. So, in theory, you can adapt any haircut to be a choppy version of itself.
Typically, the shorter and more layered your haircut already is, the better it will work with being made into something choppier.
If you have hair sitting below the shoulder, or longer, with not a lot of layering in it, making it quite sleek and heavy, then you would need to think about going shorter and adding more layering to give a choppy appearance. Length and weight of hair pull it down, making it look sleeker, and usually has less movement.
If you don’t want to compromise your length, you can always add bangs or some face-framing layering that can add movement and texture, going you a choppier effect around the face.
How to Style Choppy Short Layered Hair
To style a short choppy layered haircut, apply root volumizing product to the root area of damp hair and massage it with your fingers. Volumizing gel or foam can also be used. Try using a curling iron or flat iron to create waves or curls to add extra volume and texture to the look.
Fine or Thick hair… Does It Matter?
While some people have a head full of thick locks, other individuals have hair that is much finer. We’re talking about the size of the actual hair strand when we talk about thick and fine hair. Density refers to the amount of hair strands growing, so you can have fine hair, but lots of it, making it appear thick.
The nature of a choppy haircut means you are removing weight, which can sound scary to people with fine hair. The key to achieving a choppy look on fine hair is to work with a trusted stylist who can recommend the perfect length and amount of layering to give you movement, volume, and texture, without making your hair feel even finer.
This technique is perfect for people who have thicker hair and are looking to remove weight. If you have thick straight hair, it will make it feel much more manageable and hopefully will take a lot less time to wash and dry. If you have a curlier texture and you love to wear your natural curls on display, this will be perfect to remove some bulk and separate out some of the curls, giving them much more definition.
Going For The Chop
One great way to decide on your next hairstyle is to look at celebrities that have similar facial and hair features as you do.
Make sure to speak to your hairstylist first and make sure you are both on the same page. They will be able to advise you on what will best suit your hair type and texture, and also your lifestyle and personal preferences. Pictures are always very helpful, too, as descriptions can be misunderstood.
If you’re scared to go for a big change, start small. If you have long hair (anything below shoulders), try taking it up to just on the shoulder and add some layering. Then if you’ve liked it, you can be braver the next time and have some ore cut off. Remember, you’re the one who has to wear it and take care of it every day.
Short Choppy Hairstyles
A short choppy haircut can fall anywhere between a pixie haircut and an above-shoulder bob. The shortest version is usually layered down short enough that you can see the ears. There will be no strong part, and bangs are a default result. Think Michelle Williams or Halle Berry. Best worn with a separating product to enhance the texture for a very messy, undone look. Very little day-to-day maintenance, other than having a trim to stay in shape every 6-8 weeks, this can be washed and run out the door with minimum effort.
Slightly longer, and you’ll have a short choppy bob. Length can fall from earlobes to below chin length to maximize swings and movement—lots of layering to soften and break up the shape. Bangs are optional. It can be worn straight or messy with the right choice of product. Think Julianne Hough or Cameron Diaz.
Medium Choppy Hairstyles
Medium length usually refers to the length between just above the shoulder to just below the shoulder. To give this length a choppy feeling, you need to start thinking about some layering. Either throughout the whole shape, or perhaps just the front if you like the rest smoother. You can add bangs and face-framing layers to add a suggestion of choppiness to a medium-length bob. Think Alexa Chung or Taylor Swift.
Long Choppy Hairstyles
If you have a longer hairstyle and you want to try a choppier look, you need to think about some serious layering. If you have lots of hair, you can probably afford to heavily layer it and give yourself a shaggy, longer haircut. For finer-haired individuals that aren’t prepared to cut off the length, you can try bangs and face-framing layers, as for medium-length hair, but be careful that it doesn’t end up being chopped up too wispy. A good hairstylist should be able to give you a good balance.
Think Sienna Miller or Jennifer Aniston.
Bangs. Yes, or No?
What Type of Bangs Go with a Choppy Hairstyle?
The shorter your overall haircut is, the more likely it is that you will have bangs of some kind. Pixie haircuts tend to end up with baby bangs with softer edges, but you could play with a longer disconnected top section that would allow for a longer side-swept bang.
When you move into more of a choppy bob haircut, you can choose whether to have bangs at all. Usually, if you have a haircut that is quite layered for a choppy effect, it’s nice to add choppy layering at the front so you can end up with a side-swept bang, or you can add a classic length bang with choppy edges for softness.
The longer the haircut you have, the option of keeping more length around the face is more likely. So again, you can choose your bangs based more on personal preference and lifestyle, as opposed to the rest of the haircut deciding for you.
Again, if you are looking for something choppier in the rest of the haircut, the chances are you want a softer bang also. Full heavy bangs work better on sleek, less layered haircuts, so for something choppier, lighter bangs at your desired length are a better choice.
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website’s content and editorial direction since 2018. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra’s expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.