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  • How to grow out a bob hairstyle- Tips to avoid the dreaded soccer mom hairdo

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    I personally know how difficult it can be to stylishly grow out a bob hairstyle. Let’s help this reader avoid the dreaded soccer mom hairdo in the process.

    Q:I make an effort to keep my hair up-to-date and have been working a bob hairstyle for the past year. I loved the hairstyle and its simple chic appeal. However, its time has passed for me and I want to move on to a longer hairstyle.

    Here’s the thing, now that my bob has grown out a bit and my hair reaches to the middle if my neck, my once cool cut has taken on the neither here nor there look of a suburban soccer mom– sans the pearl studs and chinos!

    I’m freaking out because that is the very last look I’m after emulating. Even though I know this frumpy mid-neck bob length is only a temporary grow-out phase, the dowdy connection is wrecking my nerves.

    How can I get through this awkward and dull hair length style and find out how to grow out a bob without looking like I’m doing carpool in a Surburban? Please take me away from the ballgame! (Silver Springs, NJ)

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    A:Boy, do I hear what you are saying. There is that certain length of bob that goes from absolutely chic to positively blah in the matter of skipping a trim. But don’t fret, a well-cut bob will grow out to follow its original proportion and angle and not look exactly like those shapeless mid-length don’ts– although you may see the frumpish association otherwise.

    For those who are confused about the nuance of a bob going from dowdy to amazing, it’s all in the proportion and how the cut works with your face shape.

    Mama, get some life in your look, if this sounds like you: The Midwestern classic soccer mom bob is cut all one length with no hint of graduation- therefore the hair lacks any movement or volume and just sits there like a styleless latke. When there are bangs, they are cut straight across, right above the brow. The color is usually generic dishwater brown that wouldn’t hurt from a few well-placed highlights. This do coupled with shapeless eyebrows, some boring and safe drab colors, a pair of clunky white sneakers, and a floral quilted tote bag is style killer Numero Uno… yikes, am I describing that woman who is always across the aisle on a plane and asking for more pillows?

    Yes, I understand your fear. However, take that same general hairstyle and finesse its grow-out phase you get magic! What you might want to consider, and it worked for me when I was growing out my bob, is to add a few long layers around your face. The graduation there will counteract that awkward hair length phase and create some nice movement as well. If you keep the layers long, you’ll avoid the Seventies sitcom shag hairstyle, another hair nightmare altogether. Once your hair passes this length, which should be a haircut or two, you can style it anyway you chose.

    –October 25, 2008

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