There are so many flattering short hairstyles for thick hair. Removing weight and adding shape, these styles offer a low-maintenance alternative to longer locks. The key, however, is finding a crop that will suit your face shape while showing off your hair’s natural, thick texture.
Hair pros agree there are plenty of short hairstyles for women to flatter thicker hair textures. “Short hairstyle will work wonders for thick hair as long as the cut is considered,” says Jack Merrick-Thirlway (opens in new tab), creative director at Neville Hair and Beauty for L’Oréal Professionnel. “Blunt bob hairstyles or layered shag haircuts are great options as the texture will come to the fore,” continues Merrick-Thirlway. Of course, when cutting any hair short, it will always appear thicker – “if the hair is already thick, it’s important to create soft, elegant shapes. A razor cut on thick hair works exceptionally well, removing weight while creating soft edges.”
From pixie haircuts to a bob with bangs, we’ve curated an edit of celebrity-inspired short hairstyles for thick hair to suit every face shape. Our top tip? Find your favorite style and bookmark this page ahead of your next salon appointment.
Short hairstyles for thick hair – key considerations
- Face shape: “As with any haircut, it’s important to consider face shape before committing to a short hairstyle,” says Merrick-Thirlway, who recommends having a consultation with your stylist to discuss different options. Pixie cuts suit round face shapes while angular bobs are especially flattering for oval-shaped faces.
- Layers: “Adding layers can help create movement and remove additional weight,” says Merrick-Thirlway. It is, however, important to consider your hair type. “If the hair is smooth or straight, then long layers on top can look great with a super short crop,” says renowned hairdresser, Michael Van Clarke (opens in new tab). “If hair is more textured or wavy, a layered bob can work well.”
- Styling: According to the experts, less is more when it comes to styling short hairstyles for thick hair. “Loose, fluid styles work well with thick hair,” says Van Clarke, “but it may also need lift and grip at the roots.” Van Clarke recommends using a round brush with dense bristles with drying hair. To tame flyaways and condense the shape, Merrick-Thirlway swears by cream-based styling products.
Short hairstyles for thick hair we love
1. Sleek long bob
Face shape: oval, round, square | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: Transition to shorter hair with a long Italian bob. Classy and chic, this style suits everyone. Ask your stylist for a blunt haircut, just above the shoulders, paired with subtle shaping around the face.
2. Short layered shag cut
Face shape: oval, square, round | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: The shag cut is a great choice for medium to thick hair types as the heavy layers remove weight from the hair while adding shape. To style, mousse would make one of the best hair styling products to add texture and movement.
3. Pixie crop with bangs
Face shapes: square, oval and round | Hair types: fine to thick
Styling tips: Contrary to what you may think, pixie haircuts are a great choice for anyone with thick hair. The trick is to ask your stylist for lots of layers to decrease bulk as well as shorter sides. Pair with choppy bangs for that cool girl edge.
4. Tapered coily crop
Face shape: oval, square, heart | Hair type: coily, curly
Styling tips: This short, layered tapered haircut is a timeless style that accentuates cheekbones and looks great with curly and coily textures. Book in for regular trims to maintain the shape of this style.
5. Short haircut with choppy layers
Face shape: Any, especially oval | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: Searching for short hairstyles for women over 50? Consider this elegant haircut featuring heavy layers and wispy bangs. To style, we recommend using one of the best hair dryer brushes (specifically round) to add body and movement.
6. Super short pixie crop
Face shape: square, heart or oval | Hair type: fine to thick
Styling tips: Bored of experimenting with hairstyles for long hair that's thick? Mix things up with a super short pixie crop that requires far less maintenance. To style, slick down blow-dried hair using a brush and hair pomade.
7. Short curly bob
Face shape: oval, round, square | Hair type: natural, curly, coily
Styling tips: Lots of layers add shape to this curly cropped hairstyle. Prep hair with one of the best shampoos for curly hair before using a diffuser to boost bounce and body without disrupting your natural curl pattern.
8. Blunt bob with bangs
Face shape: any, particularly round | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: After a timeless short hairstyle for thick hair? Opt for this sleek, slightly rounded blunt bob that pairs perfectly with thick bangs. We recommend investing in a shine spray for extra gleam.
9. Curly pompadour pixie
Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: curly, coily, kinky
If you have thick, curly hair and want to experiment with a short style – try this curly pixie cut that contrasts thick curls on top with short, shaved sides. The overall look is ultra glamorous.
10. Jaw length bob with Hollywood twist
Face shape: oval, round, heart | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: Inspired by old Hollywood glamour, create this beautiful style using one of best curling irons. Thick hair generally holds a curl better so these ultra-precise Hollywood curves should last particularly well. Our top tip? Curl each section of hair in the same direction to create a uniform finish and style with a deep side parting.
11. Sleek lob
Face shape: oval, heart, square | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: Considering short hairstyles for thick hair but not quite ready to go full pixie? Ask your stylist for a blunt bob, without any layers, to emphasize your jawline and bone structure. If your hair isn’t naturally straight, smooth strands with one of the best hair straightener brushes.
12. Tousled lob
Face shape: square, round or oval | Hair type: wavy, medium to thick
13. Curly bob with bangs
Face shape: any, particularly square | Hair type: curly, coily, kinky
Styling tips: Seriously chic, this curly bob works so well with a deep side parting and curly bangs. To recreate this look, ask your stylist to finish the cut while your hair is dry to ensure the ends are blunt.
14. Short asymmetrical bob
Face shape: round, heart or oval | Hair type: medium to thick
Styling tips: For a fresh take on a classic style, consider the asymmetrical bob. Edgy and fun, this flattering style is especially well suited to anyone with thick hair as it removes bulk while maintaining movement and body. For extra pizzazz, style with a clip a la Michelle Williams.
15. Natural long bob
Face shape: oval, round, square | Hair type: natural, curly, coily
Styling tips: Searching for short natural hairstyles? Why not try a long bob that will show off your natural texture. We recommend using a lightweight styler like a gel cream designed for naturally textured hair to bolster shine.
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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