Less than a year ago, celebrities all over Hollywood were doing the unthinkable—chopping off their long locks and trading them in for short and sassy pixie cuts. Jennifer Lawrence did it (even if not by choice). So did Beyonce, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, and Emma Watson. It was a political and powerful feat for women, considering "short hair gets called out by less open-minded men as [being] mannish or boyish,” Tricia Romano wrote in The Daily Beast. "To men, long hair on a woman is a turn-on because it signifies fertility and clichéd ideas of femininity."
But, like seasons, hair cuts quickly come and go. The pixie cut has officially abdicated its throne, and the "lob" (abbreviation for the "long bob") has taken the reins as the hottest cut in town.
Sure, the bob may be one of the most common haircuts for women (it's been in existence since the early 1900s, after all), but now, a new crop of fashion and beauty icons have taken a seemingly historical style and its equally old counterpart (the long bob was originally popularized in the 1930s) and made them seem brand spanking new.
"Not too short, not too long, but just right," is how fashion website WhoWhatWear describes the lob, citing Faye Dunaway in Bonnie and Clyde as one of the most prevalent pop culture references of the hairstyle. Her look was sleek, low-maintenance, and (if we ignore the fact that she was playing a character in a movie) it always looked on-point.
And now modern-day stars are embracing the lob as well. Funny gal Mindy Kaling was the most recent celeb to debut the "of the moment" look, posting a photo to Instagram with the caption "Obsessed with my summer bob… See ya sweaty neck, I got a job to do." Kaling follows a laundry list of Hollywood's finest who have also chopped off their locks (but not too much!) over the past few months.
Actress Kate Mara showed off the look in late January; her stylist, Alex Polillo, described the cut as giving off a "cool-girl vibe." Kim Kardashian, Karlie Kloss, Zosia Mamet, and Taylor Swift also all rock the low-maintenance style.
Women want to style their own hair," stylist Mara Roszak (who cut Emma Stone's lob) told Allure. "They're more experienced and open to trying new things, and that's why we're seeing a lot of shorter hair. And the lob is popular because within the cut, there's a lot of room to make it your own: You can go blunt or choppy and piecey, straight and sleek or textured. You can wear updos or ponytails because there's weight and length around the face—it doesn't feel supershort."
Sure, women may be all about beauty, but in the long run, like Roszak said, we just want something easy. We want something that looks good, without have to spend hours in the bathroom with an array of tools that we (at least, I) certainly don't know how to use. The lob may have a long history, but it's also having a moment. And with the heat waves of summer right around the corner, I'm very happy to embrace it.
That is, until the fall, when the next "it" 'do comes along.