Glam January 20, 2024



What To Ask For At The Salon For A Sleek Stretched Lob, According To Our Hairstylist


Short, sassy bobs are always a playful way to make your hairstyle a statement. From mod to elegant and fierce to fairycore, there's a bob for that. But what if you don't want to go so short, or you're already trying to grow out your last short hairstyle? Lobs — aka long bobs — are popular compromises. And for a cut that slays the mid-length game, trendy stretched lobs are the answer to your styling needs.

So, what defines this look? For an insider perspective, Glam spoke exclusively to Leigh Hardges, a stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, Illinois. First and foremost, Hardges explained the true parameters of a stretched lob. While this cut rides the line between standard lobs and longer hairstyles, the stretched lob has its own slender, glamorous vibe. As Hardges told us, "The stretched lob has a slimmer silhouette with longer layers typically collapsing towards the ends of the cut." A stretched lob usually skims the collarbones, falling an inch or so below your shoulders. This creates a sleek and elegant look without needing the extra length of longer styles.

We're excited to give this one a try, but as many of us know, your expectations walking into a salon don't always align with the results you're sporting when you leave. So, how can you communicate your stretched lob vision to your stylist and achieve this look? Hardges gave us invaluable tips on choosing, asking for, and maintaining the style.

Getting and styling your stretched lob

While the stretched lob has a particular length and silhouette, you can also customize it slightly to fit your aesthetic. If you're aiming for a fierce, powerful vibe, opt for a stretched lob with super sharp and blunt ends. Or, for a gentler and dreamier effect, some stretched lobs offer softer ends with short layers just at the very bottom.

This soft version of the stretched lob is particularly popular at the moment. If you want to try it for yourself, Leigh Hardges exclusively recommended to Glam describing it to your stylist thusly: "Ask for a long bob with a soft wispy perimeter line and very subtle layers. There is nothing heavy in this haircut. It is very light and airy." Pro tip: If you have very thick hair, your stylist may also want to add some hidden layers beneath the top to remove some weight and keep your lob streamlined.

‌Once your cut is in place, it's not too difficult to style it day to day. "It is a very fluid and soft look, so styling with softer waves and a more tousled finish works best," Hardges told us. "I would suggest styling with a rounded brush and a large barrel curling iron." Simply finish with your go-to hair products and voilà! You're ready to greet the world with a fresh cut that oozes understated style.

Is a stretched lob right for you?

Some trendy hairstyles look cool on other people and then seem to sit on our heads like unkempt mops. But the stretched lob, for all its slim proportions, is more versatile than you might think. In the past, this middling length has made the stretched lob an ideal transitional look for people graduating from a shorter cut. As  Leigh Hardges exclusively pointed out to Glam, "It's the shortest one can go before moving forward to grow out the hair longer."

While we love lob haircuts for their perfect in-between length, the stretched lob is no longer confined to those half-grown-out stages. Now, this hairdo is taking its place as a covetable style of its own. We've seen high-profile celebrities from all backgrounds and fields of work flaunting the stretched lob in recent months, from Gabrielle Union to Chrissy Teigen.

What about the critical considerations of face shape and bone structure? Looking at these examples, we can surmise that the stretched lob is a well-matched choice for round and heart-shaped faces. In general, lobs are good hairstyles for heart-shaped faces, and the stretched lob's slim profile may be particularly suited to helping balance and elongate your features.