Beyoncé sure knows what to do with a little down time. Just two days after finishing the summer leg of her “Mrs. Carter World Tour,’’ Queen B decided a major change was in order. Late last night on Instagram, the superstar posted photos of herself sporting a shockingly short, freshly cropped pixie cut.
“I assure you Beyoncé’s new haircut will be the hottest haircut to hit America since Jennifer Aniston’s ‘Rachel’ hairdo,’’ says Damone Roberts, a Los Angeles based makeup artist whose tweezers regularly work eyebrow magic on both Beyoncé and Madonna.
The haircut comes just two weeks after the superstar’s extensions were caught in a fan while she performed on stage. The singer offset jokes by posting the video of the hair incident on her Instagram page quickly and by telling fans ‘‘I got snatched, 2 snaps.’’
Though T-Boz of the rap group TLC and hip hop soul singer Mary J. Blige both wore perfectly coifed blond hairstyles in the early to mid ‘90s, Beyoncé succeeded in seamlessly merging the image and the idea of blond hair on black skin in a way never seen before. She dominated the music charts and racked up major magazine covers.
The blonde micro braids she debuted as a member of Destiny’s Child soon gave way to a more polished look achieved with the aid of hair extensions, clip on tracks, and custom-made lace front wigs worth thousands of dollars. It was even rumored the Bootylicious star had a specially-designed climate-controlled room installed in her home just to keep her costly hair accessories in shape for television appearances and stage performances.
“I’m kinda of shocked she cut it I must say,’’ said one Los Angeles–based hairstylist who curled the tresses of Beyoncé’s former band mate Kelly Rowland and Queen Latifah. “Her hair has been so much of who she is over the years. That lion’s mane made her the baddest chick on the block. I’ve been buying tons of every shade of blond hair dye and extra long hair extensions for black girls ever since Destiny's Child came on the scene. Girls wanted everything Beyoncé had and that meant the same hair color and the same hair length.’’
Some speculate the singer may have been encouraged to go short by her younger, but equally stylish, sister Solange.
While this may be Beyoncé’s first walk on the wild side as far as hairstyles are concerned, Solange has taken more than a few eye-catching risks with her shoulder length mane. The singer turned DJ and current It girl, is known for wearing box braids piled high on top of her head—a hairdo Beyoncé borrowed for her trip to Cuba earlier this year—or a closely cropped cut, natural sans perm or relaxer. But by far Solange’s most popular style is her current mile high afro that perfectly frames her oval face and accentuates her keen facial features.
‘’She is a smart businesswoman and she knows you have to flip the script sometimes to keep your audience engaged,’’ Roberts, owner of Damone Roberts Beverly Hills, says of Beyoncé. “She’s a leader, not follower.’’
Still, most hairstylists say that while they expect increased requests for shorter ’dos in the wake of Beyoncé’s decision to go shorter, they aren’t convinced this move signals the end of hair extensions for the singer—or women in general.
“Beyoncé will be back,’’ said one celebrity stylist. “They all come back to the hair extensions when they get tired of the one look that short hair gives them. Look at Rihanna. One day her hair is as short as Kobe Bryant’s and the next day it’s down her back. ‘Long hair, don’t care.’ These girls live by that motto.’’