Try to name a TV show hairstyle more iconic and well-known than “the Rachel.” I’ll wait. Jennifer Aniston’s cut first emerged when she played Rachel Green in the ‘90s, and it’s been one of the few trends from the decade to not make a comeback. Well, not until the surprise announcement of the Friends reunion, which is airing May 27 on HBO Max.
Beauty retailer JustMyLook did some investigation into which Friends-born beauty and fashion trends are piquing fans’ interest. Their findings? Searches for the infamous Rachel haircut have increased a whopping 179% compared to last month. Whether it’s for a reunion watch party or because it’s inspiring summer chops, two hairstylists have given Bustle the lowdown on how to copy the ‘do yourself.
If you want to get the exact cut, it’ll require an actual visit to a stylist, says Trey Gillen, a master hairstylist and creative director of education at hair care brand SACHAJUAN. “Ask your stylist for collapsed layers on the sides of the head,” he tells Bustle, noting this is the crux of the haircut. Theadora Guzmán, hairstylist and education manager at brand Maria Nila Inc., adds that the authentic Rachel look is all about layers and volume, so be sure to get “short, square layers,” specifically.
If you don’t want to fully commit to time travel, Guzmán says you can opt for a more modern take on the look long layers, curtain bangs, and a shag haircut. “The shag is all the rage right now,” echoes Gillen, who agrees this would be a more subtle way to channel the Rachel vibe without fully copying it. Another tip for making the look feel current is to replace the round cut on top with a square cut, he tells Bustle.
Whichever route you take, Gillen and Guzmán say the key for styling is to begin with a powder or styling product to create volume at the roots. Then use a round brush to blow out your hair and continue adding volume. If you want even more of a fluffy boost, Gillen advises using velcro rollers down the sides of the part. And the final pièce de résistance? Use a styling cream to accentuate the layers and chunky bits. Voila: You’re ready for the Friends reunion.
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