When you think of shag haircuts, you're probably taken to a dark, disco-ball-lit place filled with bad fashion choices and lots of hairspray. But the new interpretation of the shag haircut is totally far out and modern -- think messy, undone texture and plenty of strategic layers that will make you look more Alexa Chung than Farrah Fawcett.
"The modern shag is different from the '70s shag, because today it is much better executed," says Edward Tricomi, co-founder of Warren Tricomi Salon. "In those days, the ends were cut very blunt, which was nice, but the modern shag is more wispy around the face. Ultimately it is a much more intricate style than it used to be."
And that's why the modern shag (or swag, as it's been dubbed) is the hairstyle that's replacing the lob as the cool-girl's haircut of choice. "This haircut is fun and easy to wear, which definitely explains its popularity," adds Tricomi. "It also looks great on virtually everyone."
Can you dig it? Here, 14 modern shag hairstyles that will inspire you to take your haircut to the max.
Scroll through the Instagram feed of Sal Salcedo, stylist at Ramirez Tran Salon, and it's easy to see why he's the master of the modern shag. "Nowadays the modern Shag is all about the texture," he advises. "The help of new styling tools and texturizing products have changed the game." (Need help choosing a dry texture spray? We've got you covered.)
The shag haircut works on different face shapes, says Salcedo. This versatility is what makes it so popular. "It's an edgy haircut --women want to feel refreshed and up with the new," he says. "I think its daring appeal catches their attention."
If you have a round face like Michelle Williams, one thing to keep in mind is that your shag haircut shouldn't be cut chin-length or shorter -- it should be kept longer to elongate your face, advises Salcedo.
You've Got Swag
According to L'Oréal Paris Consulting Hair Expert Mara Roszak, if your face can handle bangs, it can handle this style. Yes, even if you have curly hair. Just be sure you choose a stylist who is familiar with curly and frizzy hair, as the length of your layers will shorten as they dry, she cautions.
Curtain bangs and messy texture give Dakota Johnson's shag haircut that too-cool-for-school vibe. To style your shag, Salcedo says the most important product to use is a texturizer. (We love Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray, $44.) He says to grab your trusty dry shampoo and spray it in your roots and layers. Then use a matte pomade, like Sally Hershberger 24K Texturizing Paste, $40, on the ends of your hair to get that piece-y look.