Whether youre scoping out the best haircuts for women or curious to see the most popular haircuts on the rise, youve come to the right place. Now that weve rung in 2021, we dont blame you if youre looking for a way to wash away any reminder of the past year. While we love the classic lob as much as the next person, sometimes you need a little variety—and what better way to get inspired than with the coolest hairstyles from around the U.S.?

Starring curly shags in Detroit, textured bobs in Austin, and curtain bangs in New York City, we asked stylists to share the most requested styles at their salons to bring you the best haircuts for women from every corner of the country. Scroll on for all the inspiration you need.

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  • Kim

    Long and Sleek 

    If you havent been able to make it to the salon, fear not, as celebrity hairstylist Aviva Perea says crazy-long hair is trending hard for 2021. “I have seen so many people with hair longer than they normally wear it,” she says. “I also think that it will be all about long and straight, and sleek and shiny. There’s a little bit of skill that comes with using a curling iron, but most people are able to glide a flatiron down their hair.” 

  • Roy Rochlin/Getty

    Long and Sleek 

    The key to making length look healthy, not scraggly, is asking your stylist for a blunt bottom cut with barely there long layers. Then there are a few steps to getting that super-sleek look at home. “Straight out of the shower, you want to add a serum when your hair is still super wet—that way itll lock in moisture and keep your hair smooth,” says Perea. “I love the Extra Strength Serum from John Frieda. It has bamboo extract, which helps my hair stay hydrated while also minimizing frizz.”

  • Easy Waves 

    Care-free waves have always been a cool-girl staple, but with more women ditching heat styling, Perea says to expect an uptick in air-dried waves this year. Effortless hair starts with a great cut, and its crucial your stylist lays the foundation for hair that doesnt need much styling. “When you’re in the chair, you want to make sure that the layers are even and heavier from the ear forward,” says Perea. “You also want to ask that your stylist ‘cuts into’ the layers. When you take perpendicular cuts into the layer, you are giving your hair somewhere to sit, which when you are air drying is key. If you have blunt layers, your hair will dry on itself and look bulky.”

  • Easy Waves 

    “Whether you have super-curly or wavy hair, you can achieve this look, but you have to prep your hair with a really good, super-high-performing leave-in conditioner,” says Perea. She likes the John Frieda Frizz Ease Daily Nourishment Leave-In Conditioner to coat hair and lock out frizz. “When my hair is wet, I section my hair so that the product can be dispersed evenly. Then after it’s completely saturated, I give my hair a few gentle twists to encourage the loose, effortless wave that I’m after.”

  • Modern Diana 

    If the latest season of The Crown has you thinking about a Diana-inspired chop, youre not alone. Ryan Trygstad, celebrity hairstylist and cofounder of New Yorks Mark Ryan Salon, says hes been giving his clients a modern take on the princesss iconic haircut. “Its such a fresh look for 2021 and exudes confidence and style for the new year,” he says. “The cut itself is a mixture of a very short layered bob edging toward a pixie.” 

  • Modern Diana 

    Trygstad says to expect other ’90s inspired super-short cuts to come back as well. If you aren’t ready to take the plunge into pixie territory, try a sleek chin-length bob like this one on Kaia Gerber. 

  • Instagram / @cutlersalon

    Curtain Bangs

    Want bangs without the effort? Curtain bangs are about as low-maintenance as they get. “Curtain bangs are the gateway to bangs, because theyre super versatile,” says Emily Heser, stylist at Cutler Salon in New York City. “Theyre long enough to grow out or pin back if you want, but they can also be cut into a shorter look.” If youre on the noncommittal side when it comes to your cuts, consider this your match. (For more of our favorite types of bangs, click here). 

  • Curtain Bangs 

    One reason for curtain bangs crazy popularity (seriously, try scrolling Insta without spotting a pair) is that they work with all sorts of textures. No matter your hair type, the key is getting the shape right. “Keep the edges longer than the middle and the ends soft starting in the center of the pupils and working to the jawline,” says Tim Dueñas, a hairstylist at L.A.s Nine Zero One salon

  • Courtesy of Alan Vuong

    Chandelier Layers

    Not sure what to do with your hair? Add a bang, says Alan Vuong, owner of Salon Blanc in Honolulu, who says bangs are popular on all lengths for 2021, but especially when paired with long layers. “Together they flow seamlessly alongside the contour of your face, with the bangs bringing out your eyes,” he says. He notes that soft sideswept bangs, curtain bangs, and middle-part bangs are all trending, but he especially likes middle-part bangs paired with his signature chandelier layer cut (the long, soft layers you see in the photo here). To get the same look, he says to ask for “long layers at the back and smooth, graduated layers to frame your face.”

  • Chandelier Layers

    A heavier bang edges up long layers without being too extreme. Choppy bangs draw attention right to your eyes and lend that vintage vibe, while long chandelier layers add definition but dont sacrifice length. You get the best of both worlds.

  • Tight Crop

    While the Big Chop is hardly a “trend,” its been a particularly big year for women transitioning from relaxed to natural hair. Start fresh with a cropped cut—or even a buzz cut—so your curls grow in with all their natural glory. 

  • Taylor Hill/Getty 

    Tight Crop

    “Considering the current climate, a lot of women are doing their hair at home, therefore easy, effortless looks will be the go-to,” says Naeemah LaFond, Amikas global artistic director. “Women may take the opportunity to embrace their natural texture more than ever now since they don’t have as much access to the salons as they previously did.” A short, cropped cut like Lupita Nyong’o’s is a beautiful way to embrace your texture.

  • Courtesy of Lauren Moser 

    Curly Shag 

    Women in Detroit are all about embracing their natural texture and have been into the shag cut thats been popular for a few seasons now. Lauren Moser, curl specialist and owner of Hair Lab Detroit, says that what makes the shag look more modern is working with your natural texture, which gives it that cool, lived-in look. While curly girls might be scared to go for bangs, Moser promises this cut works with all curl patterns. “The defining feature of this cut is the heavy bangs and square layers that give this look its edge,” she says. “For wavy curls and dense, tight S-curl types, be sure to request internal—or ‘channel cut’—layers to be added in after the shape is cut to encourage weightlessness and texture throughout for ease of styling. For coily and kinky hair, this step is unnecessary since your curl type doesnt need help with volume.”

  • John Shearer/Getty

    Curly Shag

    The secret to nailing a curly shag like Sandra Oh’s? Product, says Amber Maynard Bolt, master stylist at L.A.’s Nine Zero One salon. “Find something that will keep your hair soft but allows for a small amount of hold,” she says. “I really love the combo of using In Common Magic Myst to start the moisture process. Then I add a combo of Ouidad Curl Quencher and Featherlight Styling cream. Depending on how big or subdued you want your hair, you can choose to air-dry or diffuse. Once hair is dry, go back to the Magic Myst to reactivate and eliminate any frizz.”

  • Instagram / @spokeandweal

    Strong Bob

    The strong bob—also known as a blunt bob—is on the rise in San Francisco. “This cut is a statement,” says Jon Reyman, owner of Spoke & Weal salons. “Cool is more important than sexy right now. Or rather, cool is the new sexy.” The strong bob works for any hair texture, but if yours is dense, ask your stylist to thin it out first.

  • Strong Bob

    Straight-across bangs are the perfect graphic compliment to a sharp bob. You can still have a high-impact bob even if its not stick-straight, so ditch the hair dryer for a slightly more lived-in look.

  • Instagram / @bowiesalon

    Long Lob

    “The lob looks good with varying lengths, which makes it perfect for all face shapes and hair types,” says Stacie Bowie, owner of Bowie Salon and Spa in Seattle. When its a little more grown out—i.e., past your collarbone and around your shoulders—its even easier to style and manage than the original.

  • Long Lob

    Its really hard to go wrong with a lob. It works with pretty much every face shape, hair texture, and style preference. For something a little edgier, take your lob into shag territory with curtain bangs and choppy layers. 

  • Asymmetrical Cut

    A major look coming out of Salon Eva Michelle in Boston is this sharp bob-pixie hybrid with voluminous curls on one side and an undercut on the other. A good trick to make sure you get the cut youre picturing: Bring photos of what you dont want, in addition to styles you love. “Those speak volumes more,” says Michelle Lee, the salons owner and manager. 

  • Asymmetrical Cut

    Another take on the asymmetrical trend? This sharp bob on Lucy Hale. The beauty with this style is it can be as avant-garde as you want, depending on how drastic the lengths are. 

  • Invisible Layers 

    While the term “layers” may bring to mind flashbacks of a choppy cut that needed heavy styling, the technique has had an overhaul in recent years and is now so much less work. “Invisible layers” are the secret for adding that whole cool-without-trying thing to your haircut in a totally modern way, no harsh layers in sight. “The most modern variation of layering is a slight angle around your face, usually starting around your chin and working its way down to the length,” says celebrity hairstylist Alex Brown. The trick is to keep the layers long and seamless to take out weight, and add texture and volume without looking too obvious. “Blending the layers is very important—they have to be cut properly to look seamless,” says Brown. 

  • Invisible Layers

    In addition to movement, another benefit of invisible layers is that they instantly define your face and bring all the attention right to your cheekbones. “How the hair frames and hits your face can completely change your overall face shape,” says Brown. “I love a layer that hits near the cheekbone to accentuate it.” She recommends asking your stylist for slight layering around your face (just past the chin) to open up your face and add movement, as well as very light layering through the interior.

  • Instagram/@karusalonatx

    Textured Bob 

    Get ready to go a little shorter. Brittany Archer, hairstylist at Austins KaRu Salon, says bobs have been trending this year in Texas. Make sure to ask for a choppy bob with movement, since “the personality of this hairstyle is stylish and carefree,” says Archer. 

  • Textured Bob 

    The trick for nailing this cut with curls is making sure your stylist specializes in curly hair. (The Swivel app is a great resource for finding curl and coil experts in your area.) A cute pair of bangs also help. 

  • Blunt Bangs

    Women in Albuquerque are loving the shaggy lob, but with a twist: blunt bangs. “Adding a bang is a great way to create a new style without the commitment of a drastic haircut or length change,” says Melinda Danella, hairstylist at Inspire Uptown Salon in New Mexico. She’s a big fan of pairing brow-grazing bangs with a collar-length cut.

  • Blunt Bangs

    Take this photo as a promise that blunt doesnt have to mean “stiff.” Ask your stylist for straight-across bangs with a bit of feathering and movement for a retro vibe. Add a little salt spray and youre good to go. (You should also read our advice on the best bangs tips, straight from the women whose bangs we obsess over.) 

  • Baby Bangs 

    Dueñas says baby bangs are big for 2021 (perhaps influenced by The Queens Gambit?). “This short statement fringe typically follows the hairline temple to temple, to create a dramatic, short, open feel,” he says. “These work great for petite features to open up your face.” 

  • Baby Bangs 

    “Ask your stylist to shape the fringe to fit your face,” says Dueñas. “I also suggest playing with the texture. These tend to work the greatest when they are a little more imperfect.” 

  • Courtesy of Dani Everson

    ’90s Chop

    While the 2010s were all about long, breezy waves, expect to see more stylized cuts in the ’20s. That doesn’t have to mean high-maintenance, though, which is why Dani Everson, hairstylist and owner of Clementines in Denver, likes this ’90s-inspired crop. “It was an era when hair was carefree and we didn’t overuse products or styling tools,” she says. “It followed the decade of hairspray and teasing, so it makes sense that it’s having a resurgence now that were coming out of the era of chemically straightening.” For the lowest effort, Everson says to make sure to ask for a cut that enhances your natural texture and bring photos (think Winona Ryder in Reality Bites). 

  • Vera Anderson/Getty 

    ’90s Chop 

    The new year is the perfect time to try a true pixie cut like Zoë Kravitzs. The angular almost-bangs make this cut feel both vintage and modern at the same time. Time to make like Tyra and yell, “I said Mia Farrow in Rosemarys Baby!” at your hairstylist (JK, please dont). 

  • Courtesy of Michelle Lee

    Curly Bangs

    B is for Boston—and bangs. “Its an easy way to soften a look and add dimension,” says Salon Eva Michelles Lee, who notes that curly fringe is having a moment in Beantown. Theyre definitely a commitment but can do wonders for your face shape.

  • Curly Bangs

    A curly fringe looks gorgeous paired with one of 2021s biggest hair trends: bold highlights. The mix of both shade and length variation really makes curls pop. 

  • Courtesy of Riawna Capri

    Polished Bobs

    “I think the best haircuts for women in 2021 will be all about structure—out with the messy texture; in comes the polished structure,” says Riawna Capri, co-owner of Nine Zero One in L.A. She says that fuzzy, bedhead hair is being traded in for more sleek styles of all lengths and you can expect to see “more blunt, thick lines in haircuts instead of shattered, piecey texture.” 

  • Polished Bob 

    The polished trend comes at all lengths—like this longer bob. To get the look, Capri says to ask for a blunt, heavy line, with no texture, and trade in your matte texturizers for shine sprays. 

  • Tapered Cut

    In Memphis, stylists are seeing a surge in women either going for short, cropped cuts when transitioning to natural hair or looking for a style thats easier to manage after growing out their Afro. Both roads lead to the tapered cut.

  • Tapered Cut

    “The tapered cut allows shorter sides and clean lines and leaves massive length in the top to achieve popular natural hairstyles such as twist-outs, rods, coils, and double-strand twists,” says TaKeisha Berry-Brooks, hairstylist and founder of A Natural Affair Beauty Lounge in Memphis. “Most are also experimenting with vivid colors to complete the edgy look.”

  • Courtesy of Charlie Martin

    Classic Lob 

    In St. Louis, women are growing out their short hair and are into collarbone-length lobs. “With the right stylist, growing out your hair doesn’t need to be a dreadful experience,” says Charlie Martin, creative director and owner of Salon One Six One. “This cut works great with softened layers throughout the crown, not to compromise fullness around the perimeter or length,” says Martin. “Adding a subtle fringe is also a great way to not get bored.”

  • Classic Lob

    Collar length lob + sideswept bangs + full curls = perfection. You cant argue with the facts. 

  • The Shag

    The Midwest is finding new ways to make lobs feel fresh. “The lob is making way for the modern shag,” says Nicole Coil, a stylist at Blueberry Moon in Chicago. “Lots of textured layers create a soft shape, which is perfect for curls and waves. And it works to give lift and volume to smooth styles.” Translation: It works for a range of hair textures. The shag is also ideal for Chicagos endless winter months, she says, because it keeps its shape under hats and beanies better than long layers can.

  • The Shag

    “Clients are really loving all versions of shaggy bangs and lots of shaggy layers,” says Trygstad. “This style really helps add movement and softness to any haircut.” Since this cut is so versatile, he says to be sure to bring in plenty of visual references to your appointment so youre on the same page as your stylist.

  • Brent Rivers/courtesy of Southern Curl 

    Curly Layers 

    “Lately all we hear is ‘Save length but give me lots of layers,’” says Robin Sjoblom, owner of Southern Curl in Atlanta. For natural-looking layers, Sjoblom and all her stylists use a technique called a Rëzo cut, which helps maintain volume and length but doesnt give curls any shelflike layers. 

  • Curly Layers 

    According to Sjoblom, the secret to nailing a curly cut like this one is to make sure your stylist dry-cuts your hair, which helps curls look more natural. And, like with any cut, she says to bring in plenty of photos to reference. 

  • Sharp Bob 

    “A good bob haircut never goes out of style,” says Sergio Pattirane, master stylist at Rob Peetoom in Brooklyns Williamsburg neighborhood. “With the right cut you can wear it chic and classy, but also tousled and rough.

  • Sharp Bob 

    “This bob is easy to manage,” says Pattirane, which makes it a fail-proof pick to try this year. If you currently have long hair, he suggests slowly transitioning to a shorter style by starting with a long bob and seeing how you like it. Then for your next appointment, you can do a more dramatic chop. 

  • Courtesy of Rossana Rojas

    Mermaid Shag 

    The shag is still going strong in Miami, but stylists are giving it an update with long layers. “This cut is awesome for any length, hair texture, and face shape,” says Rossana Rojas, stylist at Miamis Junior & Hatter Salon, adding that its been her top requested cut for the past year due to its effortless look. 

  • Vera Anderson/Getty

    Mermaid Shag

    Keep all your length but add some choppier layers around your face like Halle Berry did here. Embrace the mermaid feel of this cut by air-drying with plenty of salt spray.

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