From Long to Short in Minutes: The Faux Bob

If you’re anything like me, you may have a hard time committing to a hairstyle other than the one you’ve been rocking for a while now. There’s just something about the ease of your go-to style that makes branching out a nerve-racking endeavor. Even so, hair metamorphosis is invigorating and can make you feel like a brand new woman ready to take on the world — or at least the neighborhood.

While short haired women may easily employ the use of extensions, those with longer locks believe the only way to go short is to introduce their hair to a pair of cutting sheers.

Not true.

Thanks to the “faux bob,” long and medium haired ladies who’ve contemplated a cropped do can now give the style a test run.

Voluminous Faux Bob

Picture of a voluminous faux bob
Instagram @melostouch

Using just enough hairspray, a glamorous vintage faux bob like this will give you the confidence to show off everywhere you go. There’s not better way to wear this than pairing it with the loveliest deep red shade.

Modern Faux Bob

Picture of a modern faux bob
Instagram @aprilbloom

Q&A with style creator, Samantha Christopher
Stylist / Owner @ Bloom Color Lounge in Casa Grande, AZ

How would you describe this look?

I’d like to think of it as modern and youthful. Overall, it softens her look with the piecey texture and playful ends, which allow her to have a more ‘lived in’ look. The bit of length we added will definitely give her more styling options.

Any advice for someone considering it?

This look is the best option for someone looking to grow out their hair and jump past the awkward growing out stage! There are a couple of things to consider if you feel this look is for you:

Being aware of the upkeep is definitely the most important. I utilized tape in extensions which, on her short hair length, have to be maintained every 4-6 weeks to avoid breakage or damage to the hair.

Products are also key to keeping the hair extensions in optimum condition. Extensions need to maintain moisture as they easily tangle if not taken care of and to avoid looking dry and brittle. I love to recommend the Smooth Infusion line from Aveda for at-home maintenance.

The Softest Faux Bob

Picture of the softest faux bob
Instagram @exhale_asalon

Q&A with style creator, Debby Sprankle
Stylist @ Exhale…A Salon in Southern Pines, NC


How would you describe this look?

I love this faux bob because who doesn’t love changing their look every once in a while without loosing length?! It’s modern with edge and versatility. It’s fun and has movement a great style option for 2nd-day hair… to add a little sass to your look!

Any advice for someone considering it?

This style is super versatile: great for clients on-the-go and it can be dressed up for a more elegant look.

I would recommend this style to clients that have medium to longer length hair, with medium to thick abundance.

This style can be worn with any face shape as long as you are aware of where it’s falling in length.

For this look, we simply put the length of her hair into her sweater and slightly ruched it up. If you want to wear this look as a style, I would recommend barrel rolling the hair under, starting from the ends. Roll up to the nape of the neck (or desired length), and pin in place.

As always, the right products can help achieve the look you’re going for. I used Keune Thermal Cream for shine and smoothness, ColorProof Power Sculpt Gel for hold and body, and finished with my favorite medium hold hairspray, Keune High Society.

Accessorized Faux Bob

Q&A with style creator, Casey Ione Lee
Beauty Advisor @ Priceline in Melbourne, VIC


How would you describe this look?

It’s a very vintage look but can definitely become a more modern look by using a different headpiece! I love that you can easily have a short bob haircut without opting for the scissors!

Any advice for someone considering it?

It’s a little hard with a client that has very long, thick hair but still achievable! By braiding most of the hair underneath to the head, it eliminates the need to cram all the hair together and also makes it easier to pin the hair neatly to the head. Hairspray is always essential and plenty of bobby pins! I used a work in spray while curling the hair to help the curls stay in better as well!

Softly Swept

Picture of a softly swept faux bob
Instagram @tiffersbarrios

Q&A with style creator, Tiffany Barrios
Stylist @ Ginger Rubio Salon in San Francisco, CA


How would you describe this look?

I would describe this as a 1920’s inspired faux bob. My favorite thing about it is how the soft waves effortlessly flow through the hair from beginning to end.

Any advice for someone considering it?

This type of style is not low-maintenance. It’s a great look for a night out, a wedding, or maybe an adventure to a themed speakeasy? (Shh!)

To create something like this you would need a good foundation. I used B&b styling cream at the roots, and thickening hairspray on the ends before blow-drying, to create volume and hold. I used a 1″ wide curling iron and set the curls with pins. Backcombing for this style is necessary to hold in the pins for all the length I’ve hidden. I finished it with B&B Does It All hairspray.

Anyone could pull off this look with the right outfit!

Textured Faux Bob

Picture of a textured faux bob
Instagram @colorbykrystal

Q&A with style creator, Krystal Replogle
Colorist / Stylist @ Atelier Salon in Indianapolis, IN


How would you describe this look?

I love a faux bob! It allows you to change your look and have some versatility without having to commit to short hair. My passion lies in making this look soft and effortless, so it appears as though the hair just naturally falls into place.

Any advice for someone considering it?

When styling a look like this remember to have enough length to tuck and bobby-pin to style and roll under. Practice holding your hair up to the desired length and then loosen your grip to create a “natural fall.” The goal is to appear effortless so allow some pieces to remain loose at the front.

I love using a 3/4 Inch iron to create loose waves prior to pinning up, the extra texture gives a more polished look.

Oribe Free Styler working spray is hands down my favorite hairspray because it allows you to continue to mold and shape this look while keeping it touchable. This style is best suited for casual days all the way to glam events and can be polished with a stunning hairpiece. It’s one of my favorite looks to create!

Fine Illusion

Picture of a fine illusion faux bob
Instagram @kelleyscanvas

Q&A with style creator, Kelley Brandon
Hairstylist @ Salon Canvas & Bridal in Atlanta, GA


How would you describe this look?

I would describe this style as the perfect look for those wanting to mimic a real bob without having to cut their hair or buy a wig! My favorite thing about it is that it gives the illusion of shorter hair.

Any advice for someone considering it?

My advice is to consider the texture of the hair. The model in the pic has fine hair, so tighter curls were needed to hold the style. Density of the hair also plays an important role. The less density the person has in their hair, the more curls are needed. The more density the person has, the less curls are needed.

I also like to work with a dr, working hairspray like KMS California Working Spray when curling the hair and a firm hairspray like Sebastian Shaper Fierce when finishing the style. This particular look was achieved by curling the hair first and pinning it to let it set. After the hair is cooled, brush out the curls to achieve more of a wave and tuck/pin the hair underneath.

Reversible Style Reinvention

Reversible Style Reinvention hairstyle
Instagram @thomasdavidhope

Q&A with style creator, Jacob James
Creative Director @ Artisté in Manchester, UK


How would you describe this look?

I would describe this Artisté look as “reversible style reinvention”. The idea behind creating “Faux Naturel” for Artisté is to make women feel empowered, giving them a complete transformation whilst keeping their everyday style and identity safe.

My favorite thing about the look is the new found confidence that such a dramatic image change can bring.

Any advice for someone considering it?

My advice for anyone wanting to try this look is to go for it. What have you got to lose? The beauty of it is its versatility. You’re able to choose the length you want and tailor it to suit any face shape.

Creating the look yourself is definitely for those who don’t mind taking the time to style their hair (and spending some time to take it out after), and are a bit hair savvy when it comes to things such as curling, backcombing, and pinning to create shape. This is one of the reasons I wanted to include it in the Artisté menu of looks, so women have the option of an expert stylist creating the ideal version of the look for them.

When creating this look, we curled the hair first to add texture and backcombed volume into the root to avoid it looking flat to give a more convincing bob shape. I also find it is more flattering when the hair is parted to the side, unless you have a full fringe/middle parted bangs and would feel more comfortable with a middle part. This is definitely a show-stopping, glamorous look when worn with attitude to back it up.

Chic Textured Faux Bob

Q&A with style creator, Jaclynn Kate
Hair & Make-up Artist / Owner @ Jaclynn Kate Hair Makeup Salon in East Greenwich, RI


How would you describe this look?

I would describe this look as a chic and textured faux bob.

My favorite thing about this look is how you can really dress it up for special occasions like a wedding or an outing with friends, or you can wear this as a day to say style to work. Its sleek waves allow light to transfer and peek with dimension.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Clients considering this look should take into consideration the amount of time that goes into styling it.

To achieve this look you will need a 1-inch wand, hair clips, and hairspray. Taking small 1 1/2-inch subsections and starting at the nape of the neck and working up to the top of the head, you want to spay the hair and then wrap it around your wand. Don’t touch the curl until it has cooled. Gently run your fingers through the curls for a loose look.

If you’re a wash and go kind of gal, this look isn’t for you as it takes some time. However, what is great about this look is that it goes with all face shapes!

Effortless & Universal

Effortless & Universal hairstyle
Instagram @texturedbymeg

Q&A with style creator, Meg Maenius
Hair & Make Up Artist @ Salon 508 in Richardson, TX


How would you describe this look?

I would definitely describe this faux bob as effortless and universal. This is totally for the girl who wants to change up her look without making a huge commitment. It’s in the name, right? Faux! Yes, please!

Have a weird crease in your hair from a ponytail holder after leaving the gym? Just tuck and pin that part up. Problem solved! It’s so versatile and I believe it can suit many different personalities. Just have fun and try not to worry about it being perfect!

Any advice for someone considering it?

I love this style because you can really make it your own. By starting off with textured waves, you create the edgy look pictured here. This would be a really good option for someone with lots of layers and texture in their haircut. If you want a more sleek style, opt for the round brush or flat iron instead and try a deeper set part!

This look is also perfect for those girls with longer layers or those with hair that struggles to hold curl. If you have longer hair, try braiding the longest layer of your hair and pinning it as close to your head as possible to minimize the tucked portion in the back! This also gives you a nice cushion for all of the bobby pins.

My go-to products for this style are Kenra Professional Dry Volume Spray, Puff Me Volumizing Powder, and Oribe Split End Seal. Oh and lots of bobby pins!

Timeless & Elegant

Timeless & Elegant hairstyle
Instagram @hareandhunter

Q&A with style creator, Brooke Mann
Creative Director / Senior Stylist / Colourist @ Hare & Hunter in Remuera, Auckland


How would you describe this look?

I would describe the faux bob as timeless and elegant. I love period hairstyles and being able to create this look without committing to an actual bob is amazing!

My favorite thing about the faux bob is making my clients look and feel like they’ve stepped out of The Great Gatsby.

Any advice for someone considering it?

The products I used to create this faux bob were Kevin Murphy Bedroom.Hair, Davines Texture Dust, and Sebastian Zero Gravity hairspray. I also used my GHD iron to curl the hair first.

Even with amazing products and a very tight curl as your foundation, on the day of your event, I would always take the elements into consideration. If it’s raining, will your hair hold the curl? Will it fuzz in the humidity? Is it super windy? If your hair is prone to dropping, you could attempt the look in a straight version. Whichever approach you choose, just make sure you have a secure base at the bottom of the neck to allow for the pinning of your long hair.

I like to create my base by sectioning the hair from ear to ear across the crown area. I section all of the top hair away and plait the bottom section left out. I roll the plait under and pin it into a roll shape across the bottom of the nape. This creates a secure base to pin all of the length from the top section.

1950s Meets Modern Day

1950s Meets Modern Day hairstyle
Instagram @stylesbypetals

Q&A with style creator, Noelle A. Kabus
Licensed Cosmetologist @ Bellezza Salon in Warren, NJ


How would you describe this look?

I would probably describe this look as the 1950s meets modern day. It is like a modern-day pin-up girl/beach bum. You can’t go wrong with the classics!

Any advice for someone considering it?

My model had a VERY full head of thick, frizzy, and wavy hair, so to cut down some of that I had to braid her hair into an S pattern from the nape of her neck to about mid-ear. That still left me with a ton of hair. With that in mind, if a client has a lot of thick and frizzy hair, this may not be the style for them. I recommend that this type of updo be done on second-day hair because clean hair may make it a little difficult to manipulate.

You can achieve these curls by using a Marcel iron to curl the hair and pin it in sections. For curling, use a low-hold flexible hairspray. You want to be able to manipulate the curls and a firmer hold spray will make this harder in the long run. The curls can also be done using hot rollers. Let the curls cool before letting them down.

Forming the bob is very flexible and you can be really creative with this part. I took my curls down and twisted them, pulling on the sides to loosen the twist before pinning them in. I changed the direction of the twists to mirror how our natural hair sometimes takes on its own patterns because I wanted this to look as natural as possible.

You can make this look appeal to all face shapes and appearances. You can add “bangs” for longer foreheads, or volume on top for rounder faces. You can make it drastically long in the front for the more adventurous client, or make it closer to one length for someone more conservative that is looking for a truly natural look. You can add volume by keeping the curls bigger, or you can make it more sleek by smoothing out the curls.

I opted to give my client a side-swept bang and a beachy look to bring sexy beach waves to an old classic. For a more natural look, I would lay off the product a bit and finish with a firm hold hairspray and a pomade if needed. Happy styling!

40s Flapper Chic

40s Flapper Chic hairstyle
Instagram @hairmonsters

Q&A with style creator, Janan Delly
Owner @ J Dell Hair Studio in Shelby Charter Township, MI


How would you describe this look and what is your favorite thing about it?

This 40s flapper look is very classic, glam and chic. What I love about this look is that it makes her look sexy, sophisticated and chic, all in one look!

What products do you recommend to maintain and recreate this look?

I used a a styling product to blow dry her hair and then just some hairspray after I curled.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

This look is great for many types of people because it can look so classy on any age. It makes the more mature clients look sexy and the younger ones more sophisticated. This is a great look for special occasions and weddings.

The best type of hair for this look is medium texture and medium thickness. It works great with thick hair also, but would just need more control. It does not work so well with thinner hair because it would make it look too flat and would not be able to acheive enough definition.

Overall, it’s a great look for everyone that wants to get some attention. The waves are very sexy and very flattering!

Bethan’s Faux Bob

Bethany from Treasures and Travels by Kalos says she often goes back and forth on the idea of chopping her hair off, as well. Her solution, naturally, is to do a quick hair tuck and rock a faux bob instead of taking the short-hair plunge.

faux bob tutorial

Her tutorial is basic and works best on those with layered hair. First, put the ends of your hair into a loose pony tail, then tuck it under toward your neck and secure with bobby pins. Voila: a shoulder-length bob in under five minutes.

faux bob hair

Faux Bob With Body & Waves

If you want to create a faux bob with body and waves, take your cue from  Chanel Drror’s tutorial at Camille Styles. She transforms long, curled locks into an above-the-shoulder curly bob by pinning small sections at a time. The result? A believable bob that’ll make people think you just paid a visit to your stylist.

faux bob camile

Long Faux Bob

For those worried their hair is just too long for this style, fear not. CristopheSalon demonstrates the look on a woman with hair all the way down to the middle of her back. As you can see from the tutorial, women with longer hair will just have a more voluminous faux bob compared to those with a shorter coiffure. This particular look has a super glossy and polished finish — perfect for the office.

Romantic Faux Bob

Lastly, for a glammified version of the faux bob, check out YouTube user Lily Melrose’s “Romantic Faux Bob” look. She takes the time to curl hair before combing it out and then teases it at the ends to help create a more flattering shape. She also adds a bit of sparkle with a hair pin for a party-perfect touch.