Real Simple January 11, 2023

Real Simple

Style

Experts Predict the Top 10 Hair Trends for 2023

 

Major color and style inspo ahead.

A new year beckons change. For you, that could mean organizing your closet, scheduling big travel plans, removing toxic people from your life, or perhaps the most exciting, switching things up with a brand new hair color. If you've already experimented with winter hairstyles and haircuts and want to do something a little more momentous, you've come to the right place.

Whether you’re looking for a drastic change or subtle tweak, here are the hairstyle and hair color trends the pros are predicting will boom in the new year.

‘Bullet’ Bob

We’ve seen the mullet, wolf, and shag—so, what’s next? According to Tom Smith, celebrity hairstylist and International Colour Creative Director for evo hair, it’s the 'bullet', i.e. 2023’s biggest trend for shorter hair. “This haircut is an evolution of the wolf cut/mullet/shag styles that have been building over the last 18 months, and rather than returning to a classic bob shape, this mid-length haircut has had a mullet-inspired makeover incorporating outgrown curtain bangs with a layered bob shape,” he says. Ask your stylist to cut a choppy layered bob that just hits the top of your shoulders and add a shorter detailed piece that sits around the hollow of your cheekbone to contour your face.

Retro Slick Back

We’ve seen a surge in more utilitarian style through retro-futuristic clothing (i.e. metallics, PVC, nylon armor-wear), and Smith says this has already extended into hair styling on red carpets. “The practicality of hair swept back out of the face and held in place by liberal amounts of styling product gives a very strong, statuesque appearance to the wearer, and is a great high fashion choice to ‘harden up’ a softer outfit or make a strong statement,” he says. “Due to the practicality elements infused with a retro-futurism vibe, I predict this look will be huge in 2023.” 

To achieve the look, ask your stylist to layer up styling products in your hair, which will give flexibility and hold while retaining the slightly gritty wet look. To prevent strands from drying out, start with a moisturizing leave-in cream and layer on hydrating serums. Avoid classic gels, which will eventually harden and become too stiff.

Shades of Pink

If there’s anything we learned about post-COVID hair colors, people are not afraid to go bold in hair color choice. “Ever since Valentino sent a totally pink collection down the runway for next season, I have been waiting for signs that ‘Barbie-core’ pink is making its way into the hair world,” says Smith. “We’re now seeing the beginnings of interest in the softer shades of pink, and I’m sure we’ll be seeing the super-intense, saturated version of this shade.” 

Pro tip: If you’re already blonde, consider a temporary wash of pastel pink to dip your toe into Barbie-core. Pink tones need to be applied to lighter bases so have your stylist add highlights first if you want to try a pink shade on darker hair.

Midnight Onyx

In case you haven't noticed, winter hair colors are going dark. Really dark. According to Lorena M. Valdes, colorist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, this Wednesday-esque rich black is best paired with extra shine treatments for it to look as if it were reflective.

Oyster Gray

It’s been a few years since the huge gray hair trend peaked, and experts say it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. If you want to emphasize natural gray hair, Smith says a dyed silver has a different, more modern characteristic to natural gray. “Incorporating silver or gray tones in your hair can be done by enhancing the gray strands you already have, clustering silver highlights around them,” he says. “Alternatively, you can have your colorist pre-lighten your hair using bleach and then add a silver toner to get the boldest effect.”

Bottleneck Bangs

This hairstyle takes inspiration from the neck of a bottle; starting slim and short in the middle, curving longer around the eyes, and then longest following the line of the cheekbone. "This allows the length and angle to be adjusted depending on whether you want to make your cheekbones appear wider or stronger," says Smith. "Many people don't suit a classic 'fringe' (the solid horizontal line across the face), but most can wear bottleneck bangs to add softness to the face."

To get bottleneck bangs, Smith says to "ask your hairstylist for longer bangs that skim your cheekbones at an angle that flatters your face, curving around to create a layer that sits somewhere between your cheekbones and jaw." Then, ask for the central part to be cut shorter, keeping the cutting line soft and choppy, with the shortest part in the middle and getting longer on the edges.

Brushed-Out Blowout

One of the defining hairstyles of the supermodel era, the bombshell blowout, is making a loud comeback—but requires the right tools and aftercare. “Always work with dry hair, whether you’re using Velcro or hot rollers,” says Dani Hauflaire, stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago. “I like working with 1.25- to 1.5-width Velcro roller depending on length. After you’ve round-brushed a section of hair, grab your roller, rolling from the bottom up, and pin.” For this modern set, you want to be sure the roller sits on top of the hair strand while you roll up. Set until completely cool, flip over, and rake with fingers.

Flippy Bob

Give the classic look a fresh update with a side part and flipped ends. To achieve this style, Raven Hurtado, stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, advises asking for a blunt cut above the shoulders. “The stylist should cut the shape parted in the middle that way when you part it on the side, both sides will be symmetrical,” she says. “You can let it air-dry and the ends will flip naturally on their own, or you can round brush going under.” 

Winter Flannel

According to colorist Rex Jimieson, this highlighting trend—dubbed winter flannel—creates ribbons of color while still maintaining dimension. “These chunky highlights frame the perimeter around the face and look great styled with a round brush for movement," he says. "The benefit is that you have a pop of color while still maintaining a high dimension look. To achieve the look, ask your colorist for ribbons that pop and to leave a lot of background color to ensure the color stands out.

PRF Injections

In case you're not aware of the treatment, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a treatment doctors use to accelerate healing in various areas of the body, particularly the scalp. Platelet rich fibrin, aka the cousin of platelet-rich plasma, is used to treat signs of aging on the scalp and face. With searches for the treatment higher than ever, experts predict that these treatments will continue into the mainstream in 2023. When it comes to hair loss, the theory is that platelets injected deep into the scalp to reach the bottom of the hair follicle can help stimulate hair growth.