A lot is asked of the perfect summer haircut. It has to look good in multiple settings, whether you’re having brunch at a sidewalk cafe or reading a book in the park. It has to be lightweight and airy so you don’t melt in the heat. And, most important of all, it has to be easy to deal with. Since the newly trending bubble bob checks all of these boxes, it’s about to be everywhere.
Bob haircuts have over 580 million views on TikTok, so it’s clear everyone’s already into the short-haired look, including famed bob-lovers Hailey Bieber and Kourtney Kardashian Barker. What sets the bubble bob apart is the slightly graduated angle that’s typically longer in the front and shorter in the back, says Shelly Aguirre, a stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago. “It’s a twist on a very classic haircut,” she tells Bustle. Thanks to the angle, the bubble bob is rounder and appears to bubble up in the back in a perfectly bouncy way.
According to Martin Palmer, a salon manager at Nicky Clarke Birmingham, the perfect bubble bob starts with the right cut. Once you pick your length — a bubble bob can fall anywhere between the shoulder and jawline — ask your stylist to add in a graduated angle. “Graduation is the build-up of weight, so it has that slight wedge shape at the back,” Palmer tells Bustle.
Once you get the basic cut, there are lots of ways to bubble your bob. Wear it air-dried, swept over with a deep side part, straightened to accentuate the angle, or wavy to play up the volume. Because it can be worn in so many different ways, this kind of bob works for various hair types.
If you’d prefer to customize the cut, that’s fine too. Aguirre says the bubble bob is super versatile, and you can opt for some fringe, a slight curtain bang, and either more or less graduation in the back. “I’ve seen curly hair rock this look as well,” she says. For inspo, look to Ciara, Kerry Washington, Monica Barbaro, Jourdan Dunn, Lori Harvey, and Elsa Hosk, all of whom have been sporting their own version of the bubble bob.
As long as the shape has been cut properly, the roundness of your bubble bob should take over no matter what, Aguirre says. This means you can prance around a windswept beach or let your hair air dry after swimming, and the bob should be good to go. If you have time to style, you can play up the shape with a few easy tricks. “When styling the bubble bob, remember that the look is supposed to be rounder overall, so this means busting out those trusty round brushes,” she says. Start by applying a styling mousse while your hair is wet. This will add volume and texture, especially if you have straighter strands, says Aguirre. Then get in there with a blow dryer and the round brush to add even more.
Once your hair is mostly dry, Palmer suggests spritzing on a root-boosting spray before using the round brush to lift your hair at the root. As you dry down the length of your hair, tuck the ends under to create the bubble look. The result should be an easy, breezy bob that’s perfect for summer.
Shelly Aguirre, stylist at Maxine Salon
Martin Palmer, salon manager at Nicky Clarke Birmingham