Conventional wisdom says that we should all be getting our hair cut every six to eight weeks to keep our ends healthy and our style intact. However, there are a few factors this “rule” doesn’t take into account—like your individual hair length and texture. We tapped Liana Zingarino, a top hairstylist at Serge Normant at John Frieda Salon in New York City to get the rundown on when we really need to go in for a trim.
If you have long hair
If you have long hair—that is, hair that falls beneath your shoulders—"you don’t need to get your hair cut as often as others,” says Zingarino. “If you’re someone who likes to keep your overall length long and the same length on the bottom, I tell my clients to come in every 12- 16 weeks. This will ensure that you keep your ends healthy and it will maintain your desired length, while keeping the style or layers intact.”
And if you’re a long-haired gal who falls more under the camp of “the longer, the better,” then Zingarino says “you could honestly get away with only coming in two to three times a year.” However, this only works if you have healthy hair to begin with. “If you have bleached or overly processed hair, you can compromise the health of your hair by waiting too long between trims.” Worried about losing too much length? “Ask your stylist to give you a light ‘dusting’ in order to maintain your growth progress and health of the hair.”
If you have short hair
If you have short hair—that is, hair that sits above the shoulders—she tells her clients to come in every 8-12 weeks for a cut. “Depending on the length and how you like to keep your hair, it will vary a little by person, but if you have a bob or length haircut, the 8-12 week range is a good amount of time to maintain your style,” advises Zingarino.
If you have a pixie or bangs
“If you have a pixie cut or bangs, you will more than likely want to keep things maintained at that length, which is why most of my clients come in every 6-8 weeks,” says Zingarino. The good news is that most salons offer complimentary bang trims to help you maintain your style between full haircuts and they typically only take 10 to 15 minutes. For pixie cuts, what you’ll often find is that the back or sides start to get out of control faster than the front, so you can ask your stylist to even things out for you between appointments.
If you have curly hair
“Because curly or coily hair is wrapped so tightly, it may seem like it’s taking your hair longer to grow. However, you still need to maintain the health and shape of your curls by getting them trimmed every 12-16 weeks. “Curly hair is typically drier then other hair types, so keeping your ends tidy will not only maintain the health of your ends but also keep your curls more defined and well-shaped,” says Zingarino.
If you have textured hair
“Textured hair is typically thicker and coarser than other hair types. Similar to curly or wavy hair, I would still say that coming in for a cut every 12-16 weeks is a good rule of thumb,” advises Zingarino. “Ask your stylist if you can come by in-between appointments to get the weight taken out of the back. This will help control your hair and keep the style fresh while your wait for your next full. Plus, it will help you get ready faster in the mornings since you won’t have to spend extra time battling the blow dryer!” says Zingarino.