The boyfriend bob is set to be this season’s most in-demand haircut. Cooler than your average chop, this boxy rendition of the classic bob is sophisticated and chic. Popular among the celebrity circuit, the short ‘do has been spotted on the likes of Lucy Boynton, Laura Harrier, and Jessica Alba.
It’s likely you’ve heard of the French bob, the Italian bob and maybe even the box bob – but how about the boyfriend bob? Effortless and minimal, this chic style has, along with the butterfly haircut, taken social media by storm. “One of the biggest haircuts that we will be seeing this season is the blunt, boyfriend bob,” confirms Adam Reed, UK editorial ambassador for L’Oréal Professionnel.
Unlike most bob haircuts, the boyfriend bob prides itself on being relaxed and effortless. Think of it as the hairstyle equivalent of an oversized blazer – it goes with everything and can be dressed up or down. If you're feeling tempted to try it for yourself, let the experts break down everything you need to know.
Boyfriend bob: what you need to know
What is the boyfriend bob?
“The boyfriend bob haircut resembles a traditional bob but has a squarer look to it,” says Domenico Casella, senior stylist, and colorist at Neville Hair and Beauty for L’Oréal Professionnel. Hence why some people refer to this style's shape as a block. Reed seconds this and describes the cut as “a square outlined, shorter, blockier bob.”
As for the name, “It stems from the style’s resemblance to a ‘90s men’s curtain cut, except that it's slightly longer with blunter ends,” explains Casella who adds that the length of a boyfriend bob sits somewhere between a long bob (AKA the 'lob') and a pageboy cut. Super versatile, “the boyfriend bob is fun, sophisticated and oozes coolness – which makes it extremely appealing,” continues Casella.
Who does the boyfriend bob suit?
“The beauty of the boyfriend bob is that it suits most hair types,” assures Casella. However, if you have very thin hair and are after a hairstyle for fine hair – this cut may turn out to be a bob mistake, as it “looks better with a bit of weight and volume,” he adds. In terms of face shape, this style suits heart, round, and square-shaped faces best. “For square-shaped faces, a boyfriend bob with bangs works especially well, adding softness to the look,” says Casella.
It may sound strange but, “this style also always looks great on people with long necks,” notes Casella, “as it creates a gorgeous angular juxtaposition of horizontal and vertical lines.” If you’re unsure as to whether the boyfriend bob will suit you, we recommend speaking to your stylist first and showing them a few pictures to ensure that you’re on the same page.
How to style a boyfriend bob
As with most bob hairstyles, such as the trending slob haircut, the key to styling this cut is simplicity. “This look is super versatile and can be adjusted to be dressed up or down,” says Reed. “Straighten and smooth with one of the best hair straighteners to create a sharp, glossy look, or add waves and volume using your best curling iron to create a messy, tousled look,” Reed recommends L’Oréal Professionnel Metal Detox Oil to create a sleek look or Tecni.Art Beach Waves to create a light, messy wave.
You can also embrace your natural hair texture with this ‘do. “Whenever I have a client with a bob, I ensure that they leave the salon with the correct hair products for their hair type,” says Casella, “I want my clients to be able to reproduce the feel-good sentiment at home without having to spend too much time styling it.” His top product recommendation? A little bit of L’Oréal Professionnel TECNI.ART Super Dust to enhance your texture.
The experts recommend...
A-List boyfriend bob styles we love
1. Curly boyfriend bob
2. Wavy boyfriend bob
If you're already sporting a naturally wavy hairstyle, embrace your texture and dial it up with texturising dust. If, however, your hair is naturally straight, invest in a hair-waving tool like Amika's High Tide Deep Waver to recreate this tousled 'do.
3. Sleek boyfriend bob with bangs
Proving just how versatile this haircut is, the boyfriend bob is also a flattering hairstyle for straight hair that can be paired with full bangs for soft shaping around the face.
4. Super short boyfriend bob
"The boyfriend bob can be worn with a center or side parting and styled straight or wavy," says Casella. We adore Ciara's tousled asymmetric bob with a deep side parting.
5. Voluminous boyfriend bob
A boyfriend bob with XXL volume = this season's other hottest trend, the bubble bob. If hair is naturally fine, boost volume by drying hair with one of the best hair dryer brushes (specifically, a rounded hair dryer brush) and mist the roots with a lifting hair spray.
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Emma Stoddart is a freelance beauty journalist and self-confessed skincare aficionado with over five years’ industry experience. Emma has worked for some of the UK’s top women’s titles including Net-A-Porter, Stylist and Grazia. Her experience spans online and print as well as producing editorial shoots with some of the industry’s biggest artists, including Val Garland. Asides from working with them behind the scenes, she’s also had the chance to interview the likes of Patrick Ta, Pat McGrath, and Sam McKnight for all their insider tips and tricks.
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