Byrdie October 20, 2022



The U-Shape Haircut Is the Secret to Instant Volume


It makes hair look twice as thick.

Thick, voluminous hair doesn't always feel like the most achievable goal. And even if supplements and serums do help your hair grow eventually (and the jury's still out on a lot of them), they can't give you immediate results. This is where the U-shaped haircut comes in. This go-to chop is a quick and easy way to give your hair more body, shape, and volume.

The U-shape haircut looks pretty much exactly how you'd expect—just perhaps subtler. With this look, the back and middle of the hair is kept the longest, while the sides are gradually cut shorter, giving your hair a rounded look. A bit of face framing, with the shortest pieces ending around the chin, makes the style come together.

So, why does this cut work so well for extra thickness? According to Raven Hurtado, stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, "The U-shape haircut removes weight and bulk and gives lift towards the front [to look] less boxy on thick hair, but it can also work with finer hair to give body."

Ahead, everything you need to know about the U-shape haircut—plus, how to ask for it at the salon.

What Is a U-Shape Haircut?

"The U-shape haircut is similar to a V-shape haircut," Hurtado explains. "The difference with a U-shape is the sides are rounded giving it a curved look, while the V haircut is more pointed towards the middle."

Both styles can give your hair more dimension, but the U-shape is a less harsh look. "The U-shape haircut is softer with light long layers that are rounded and blended, while keeping the perimeter the same length," Hurtado explains. The result? A haircut that leaves hair looking lush and full of dimension.

The Hype

With thick, bouncy hair (hello, hot rollers) making a comeback on TikTok, it's no surprise that the U-shape haircut is gaining new fans now. One video, sharing a 360 of this look, has over one million views with plenty of comments like, "I WANT THIS" and "OMG the volume!"

In another video featuring this haircut, the comments section was full of people ready to head to their nearest hair salon. One wrote, "help do I just show her this video." Another commented, "I ASKED FOR THISSS."

If you're feeling the same way, read on for how to request this look at the salon (and how to make it look this good at-home).

How to Ask for a U-Shape Haircut

Feeling inspired? If you want to request this cut at the salon, try asking for it by name. Hurtado also recommends, "Mention that you want to keep the length and add light face-framing—just enough to give fullness and to remove some of the weight." Showing your stylist photos and videos can also be really helpful here.

Once you have a U-shape haircut, maintaining it is pretty easy. Your hair should keep the shape as it grows out, but regular trims (around every six to eight weeks) will keep the look fresh.

How to Style a U-Shape Haircut

The great thing about this haircut (besides the instant volume) is that it is extremely low-maintenance. Though unstyled, natural hair might not look quite as lush as a fresh blowout, the layers and shape should still work to make your hair look full. "Because of the settle layers, this cut will give automatic bounce if air dried or blown out," Hurtado explains.

If you do want to put a little more TLC into this cut, Hurtado suggests using a 1 1/4 inch size curling iron to "give definition to the layers."