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The kitty cut is a softly textured lob that’s taken social media by storm. Learn more about the trending cut and how to style it here.

How To Try the Kitty Cut, the Viral ‘It Girl’ Bob of the Year

The kitty cut is a softly textured lob that’s taken social media by storm. Learn more about the trending cut and how to style it here.
How To Try the Kitty Cut, the Viral ‘It Girl’ Bob of the Year

The bob haircut is always getting reinvented, and it’s easy to see why. Cropped ‘dos—especially layered ones—are a surefire way to add visual interest to your hair while remaining fairly low-maintenance in the styling department. Not to mention, short hair can flatter just about anyone when a skilled stylist is behind the shears. The latest look floating around on social media is the kitty cut, a long textured bob that’s as airy as it is voluminous. We tapped Michelle O’Connor, Matrix global artistic director, to break down everything you need to know about the viral cut and how to style it. Find all the details ahead.

What Is a Kitty Cut?

According to O’Connor, a kitty haircut is a long bob that sits right above the shoulders and features delicate, rounded layers and overgrown curtain bangs. There’s no official, agreed-upon reasoning for the kitty cut’s feline namesake. But if we had to guess, we’d chalk it up to how the cut’s subtle, blended layers allow for light, sensual movement—reminiscent of how a cat gracefully slinks around.

The kitty cut is a softly textured lob that’s taken social media by storm. Learn more about the trending cut and how to style it here.

What’s the Difference Between a Kitty Cut and a Wolf Cut?

With so many critter-inspired cuts floating around, distinguishing one from the other can get confusing. At first glance, the kitty haircut may seem similar to the wolf cut, but the two are not the same.

The wolf cut is a cross between the ‘70s shag and ‘80s mullet haircut. It features choppy layers, face-framing fringe, and a punk rock-inspired shape. For this ‘do, the more carefree and voluminous, the better. A kitty cut, on the other hand, is like the refined older sister of the wolf cut. Its subtle, rounded layers help give your hair natural-looking movement with a less outwardly shaggy finish. In short, the kitty cut is as mainstream as the mullet is daring and edgy.

Good hair day by @craphairclub

How Do You Ask for a Kitty Cut?

“If your stylist is not familiar with a kitty cut, ask for a long bob with rounded layers,” says O’Connor. Think of it like your standard curtain bang cut that just separates and dramatically sweeps over to the side.

Have your stylist snip in long, blended layers throughout your hair—the longest of which should be about a centimeter shorter than your base. Then, have them add in a swooping, cheekbone-skimming curtain bang and jaw-length face-framing pieces.

Editor’s Tip: Like many haircut trends, people’s interpretation of the kitty cut may vary. It’s always a good idea to show a few inspo photos to your stylist so they know exactly what you’re hoping to achieve.

Now, let’s talk about maintenance. If you want your length to hover right at or above your shoulders, O’Connor recommends getting a trim every 6-8 weeks. You can just as easily grow out your kitty cut, too. Unlike the rigid structure of, say, a blunt bob, the kitty cut has a softer shape that gives it a more lived-in vibe the longer it grows.

Good hair day by @noa_teomi

Who Is a Kitty Cut Best For?

The kitty cut can be tailored to all hair types and textures—from straight strands to looser curls.

“The kitty cut is great for someone who wants to have long, face-framing layers without their hair feeling too short,” says O’Connor. “It has versatility as you can still put it up and have fringe surrounding your face.”

As always, heading to a professional stylist is the best way to ensure the cut will flatter you.

Good hair day by @thebangsbabe

Is the Kitty Cut Good for Thin Hair?

The kitty cut is ideal for adding volume without removing too much density, making it a good option for those with thin hair. If you aren’t yet sold on a lob, check out our explainer, How Ghost Layers Can Bring Flat Hair Back to Life, for another way to score fuller-looking hair.

Good hair day by @studiolioness

3 Ways To Style a Kitty Cut

You can rock the kitty cut air-dried, blow-dried, or diffused—it’s all about the final look you’re after. Here are our top styling tips and professional products to try depending on your hair type.

Best for Straight Hair: Blow-Dried

Keep straighter kitty-cut hair from falling flat with a blowout. First, apply a shine-enhancing heat protectant like Matrix Food For Soft Multi-Use Hair Oil Serum from the mid-lengths to ends of damp hair. Then, use a medium round-barrel brush to blow dry your hair in sections, directing airflow downward with your dryer nozzle.

As you work through each section, twist your brush in different directions. This creates a fluffy yet natural flow of movement throughout your strands and highlights the curvatures of your layers. After each section is complete, give it a pass with a shot of cool dryer air to set and smooth your hair. Flip your part to the opposite side to add some oomph. (And, in case you missed it, side parts are making a serious comeback.)

Best for Waves and Loose Curls: Air-Dried

Embrace the heat-free lifestyle and let your hair’s natural wavy or curly texture shine through. Here, you’ll want to apply products that can help enhance your hair’s pattern while offering some sort of shape memory. We love air drying with the help of Redken Beach Spray. The sea salt-free spray formula helps you get defined beachy waves without the crunch. Spray it onto damp hair and scrunch to help activate your curl pattern. Watch how one editor put it to the test in our Redken Beach Spray Review.

Best for Curls and Coils: Diffused

Blow dry your kitty cut without disrupting your curl pattern using a diffuser. These dryer attachments feature spikes that help separate your curls for a defined, frizz-free finish. Apply a curl cream with heat protection, like Kérastase Crème De Jour Fondamentale Hair Cream, then place the ends of your hair onto your diffuser. Scrunch your hair towards your scalp as you dry it to help add bounce to your curls.

Next Up: 40 Layered Bob Haircuts for Every Hair Type and Texture

Header photo credits (left to right): @noa_teomi and @studiolioness

Ready to try the kitty cut? Use our salon locator to book an appointment with a stylist near you.

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