How often should you cut your hair? It’s a question many of us have wondered. A fresh haircut can make you feel confident and put together. But going to visit a hairstylist every month can feel like a big ordeal. Figuring out the right frequency for you, and establishing a regular hair cut routine can take out the guesswork and put the fun back into your hair care.
Why Should You Cut Your Hair Regularly?
Scheduling regular haircuts has a dual purpose. For one, haircuts eliminate split ends. If you have split ends and you don’t trim them, they can continue to split up the length of your hair, causing damage.
And secondly, haircuts keep your hairstyle intact. When your hair grows out, your style loses shape, and it may no longer look the way you want. If you find that your hair looks damaged or overgrown, it’s time for a haircut.1 Establishing a regular hair cut routine can maintain your hair style and health and take the guesswork out of maintenance.
How Often Should You Cut Your Hair? The Rule Of Thumb
How often should you cut your hair? Like most beauty advice, the answer is: it depends on your specific situation. While there is no single answer that works for everyone, the ideal frequency for most people will fall somewhere between 6-12 weeks.2
Now that is a big range. To narrow it down a little bit, you’ll want to look at your hair length, type, style, and habits.
How Often Should You Cut Short Hair?
If you rock a short style, like a pixie cut or a bob, you’ll likely need regular trims to maintain the shape. Hair grows about a half inch per month, which can really change the style if it grows out. Consider starting a regular hair cut routine where you cut your hair monthly.3
How Often Should You Cut Medium-Length Hair?
Styles like lobs and shoulder-length shags can go slightly longer between cuts. Since these styles fall past the shoulders, they don’t lose their shape as drastically as shorter cuts when they grow out. Consider trimming medium hair about every 8 weeks, give or take.
How Often Should You Cut Long Hair?
Long hair can take a little extra growth between cuts without looking shapeless or unkempt. You do, however, want to regularly cut long hair to keep it healthy. Long hair is vulnerable to split ends and breakage because it is old. It’s been on your head for a long time! Maintain the health of your long hair by cutting it every 3 months or so.4
How Often Should You Cut Curly Hair?
People with curly, natural, and kinky hair texture can wait a bit longer between haircuts for a couple of reasons. For one, extra growth on curly hair doesn’t affect the style too much. Secondly, people with curly hair sometimes let their hair dry naturally without heat styling. If you don’t use heat on your hair, you can wait longer, as it is less likely to be damaged. Use 10-12 weeks as a rule of thumb.5
How Often Should You Cut Fine Hair?
Fine hair may be more susceptible to heat damage than other hair types. It also tends to be more obvious when a fine hairstyle grows out. If you have finer hair, aim to get it trimmed every 4 to 6 weeks.6
How Often Should You Cut Damaged Hair?
If your hair is fried from chemical processing, bleach, or heat styling, opt for more frequent cuts. Regularly cutting your hair, about once a month, will allow your damaged hair to grow out and keep your hair roots healthy and strong.7
How Often Should You Cut Your Bangs?
Bangs call for frequent trims. Some hair experts recommend trimming your bangs every 2 weeks, and others say that once a month is okay for lower maintenance styles, like curtain bangs. If your bangs hit right below your brows, even slight hair growth may cause them to touch your eyelashes. If your bangs are in your eyes, it’s time for a hair trim.8
Habits That May Call For More Frequent Cuts
Aside from hair length, type, and styles, there are certain habits that may require you to get more frequent cuts. If you blow dry your hair daily, for example, you may want to go for a trim in order to avoid damage. Here are some factors that may warrant more frequent cuts.
Is your hair chemically treated? Chemical treatments, like chemical straightening, perms, relaxers, highlighting, and coloring can weaken your hair. If you regularly do these things, consider visiting your hairstylist for more regular cuts, about every 6 weeks.9
How often do you style your hair with hot tools? If you reach for your blow dryer or straightener daily and you rarely use heat protectant, you may be damaging your hair. Heat styling can weaken your hair and make it more vulnerable to damage. Hair that is damaged should be cut frequently.10
Ponytails, Buns, Braids, And Other Tight Hairstyles
Wearing your hair up can be a convenient way to get ready in the morning, especially if you’re overdue for a haircut. But constantly pulling your hair back in a tight style, like a high ponytail, can lead to breakage. If you love to pull your hair back tight, you may want to book more frequent haircuts.11
While a scorching hot shower after a long day can feel great, it can also damage your hair shaft. Over time, excessively hot water can dissolve the fatty lipids in your hair cuticle. This can weaken your hair. If you frequently scorch your hair in the shower, consider following up with more frequent haircuts. (You may also want to consider turning that knob down and using warm or even cool water).12
Vigorous Towel Drying
Wet hair is more vulnerable to damage than dry hair. If you are in the habit of vigorously toweling off your head after a shower, you may be causing damage. Consider cutting your hair more frequently and blotting your hair dry instead of rubbing it.13
Telltale Signs That It’s Time For A Trim
General guidelines aside, sometimes you just need a haircut. Here’s how to know when your hair is begging you for a trim.
- You’ve lost your shape. If your hair looks flat, triangular, dull, or just meh, it’s time for a cut.
- The ends of your hair feel dry, or you see split ends. If you see split ends, you’re already a little past due for a haircut. Oops. Next time, head to the salon as soon as the ends of your hair feel dry. They may be splitting soon.
- Your ends tangle easily. This is another sign that split ends are on the horizon.
- It’s hard to style. If you find yourself struggling with your regular hair styling routine, it may be time for a cut.
- You wear your hair up. A lot. This is a sign that your hair is getting hard to style, and it may be time for a cut.14
Haircuts…They Aren’t Just For Breakups
Getting a haircut may feel like a big, dramatic change. Rather than waiting too long and then dramatically chopping your hair, why not consider a regular trim? Once you have a style you love, going in for regular trims is a great way to maintain it and keep your hair healthy.