How To Style The Coolest Short Haircuts Of Fall 2022

Go short with face-framing lobs, choppy pixies, and snipped styles that are easy to manage and style.

Written by Deanna Pai

A new season calls for a new style — and that style should be short. Here’s why: Short haircuts are wildly underrated. For one, they can offer a ton of variety; despite what some might think, there are a multitude of lengths and styles between a pixie and a bob. For another, they can be endlessly versatile depending on how you style them, ranging from a slicked-back pixie to the newer mixie trending recently. And finally, there’s just the surprise factor: A newly short, dramatic chop can steal the show, especially if no one’s expecting it.

The secret to making the most of your short haircut is to style it right, which takes both a little strategy and dedicated products. That’s because what a short cut lacks in length, it can easily make up for in both texture and movement. With that in mind, consider these four incredibly cool short haircuts just in time for autumn — and how you can make the most of them with the right products in hand.

The Lived-in Pixie

Pixies have always been cool, but they’re a serious commitment — meaning if you go for it, you’re going to have to stick with it. The good news? Having the right stylers on hand can make that easy. They can give the pixie an effortless, just-woke-up-like-this texture — which is kind of a big deal, since anyone who’s ever had a pixie knows that bedhead can be a gamble.

To get a second-day look, use a 1-inch curling wand — like Bed Head Rock N' Waver 1" Digital Tapered Curling Wand — to create texture and give hair a piece-y look. (It’s tapered at the end, making it skinny enough to wrap even super-short strands around it.) Follow up with Bumble and bumble Surf Wave Foam, which gives hair instant texture and just a touch of hold, and finish (or refresh) the final look with a spritz of Redken Dry Texture Finishing Spray. It adds grip and volume without weighing down hair, lending a tousled, lived-in effect to the pixie.

The Mixie

Mullets are officially back, and the latest spin on the ‘80s style is to take it short via a mixie — a.k.a. a mullet-pixie hybrid. True to its roots, the mixie is business in the front and a party in the back, but at a cropped length that looks surprisingly elegant. To make the most of it, you’ll want the healthy-hair trifecta of volume, texture, and shine.

Start by applying Virtue Volumizing Mousse to damp hair, which lends fullness and bounce, then follow it up with Living Proof Restore Perfecting Spray. It acts as a heat protectant, detangler, and shine booster. Then, dry hair with Drybar The Half Shot Small Round Blow-Dryer Brush; it's small enough to accommodate shorter strands, while the round shape adds structure to your blow-out (versus the average hair dryer). Spritz the It’s a 10 Miracle Blow Dry Texture Spray to get some separation and movement — and, of course, enough hold to handle wherever the day takes you.

The Short Shag

Shag haircuts are one of the most versatile styles in the game, which is why they keep coming back. A short take on the shag offers that same versatility — not to mention the face-framing layers and built-in body, which help make the most of your natural hair texture. It’s also a great option if your hair tends to be fine or super-straight.

Begin by prepping damp hair with Olaplex No.9 Bond Protector Nourishing Hair Serum, which offers shine as well as protection against pollution, breakage, and heat. Then, use Eva NYC Healthy Heat Nano Silk Styling Iron, which can be used on damp or dry hair and features nano-silk plates that actually lock in moisture. Create extra volume and movement with Diane Dual Teeth Teasing Comb, then finish off with Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Frizz Fighting Touch-Up Balm to keep frizz at bay. (You can also use it to smooth hair and restore definition throughout the day, too.)

The Face-Framing Lob

The long bob (aka the lob) has a lot going for it: Not only does it frame the face, but it also refreshes your look without feeling like you’ve chopped off all your hair. That makes it a winner for anyone who’s on the fence about short hair. Plus, it’s a universally flattering cut — whether your strands are pin-straight or super coily.

With this specific style’s case, the goal is to enhance your natural curls so that they’re bouncy, shiny, and frame your face beautifully. First things first, apply a hydrating leave-in treatment like Superfoods Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture 3-in-1 Leave-In Spray to wet or damp hair. Pro tip? For an extra boost of shine, cocktail it with a few drops of Kristin Ess Hair’s Weightless Shine Working Serum, which helps tame frizz and gives hair a glossy sheen. Follow up with a dollop of Pattern’s best-selling Styling Custard to shape and define your curls while they’re still mostly wet. Then, once your hair is damp, use Drybar's The Bouncer Diffuser, which gently dries and defines curls while reducing frizz at the same time.