The expert-approved hair colours, cuts and styles set to trend in 2022
The year of statement everything
By Delaney Loane
Digital Beauty Editor / October 28 2021
We’re shouting it from the rooftops; 2022 is going to be a major year in the glorious land of hair. Say it’s because we saw more split ends than friends this year, but alas, we plan to go all in with our cuts and colours, mainly because we damn well can again.
But because said zest for change is burning bright (and at this stage we’d consider magenta mohawks if it meant we looked different/felt fresh), we decided to call in the experts to ensure we stayed within the ‘chic’ lane while experimenting.
Luckily, they don’t plan to reign us in too much: “Anything with an impact [could be on the cards]” according to Marie Uva, Director of Uva Salon. “People will want big changes to help them recover from 2021! I’m looking forward to seeing bold, liberating and empowering looks,” she explains.
The need for ‘new everything’ was a sentiment echoed by Stevie Corthine, Founder of Stevie English Salon and AHIA Creative Colour Expert 2021. “Coming out of lockdown I think we will see people being drastic and wanting change so we will be creating big chops and lots of colour transformations. People have had a long time to think about their new look and will be much more willing to experiment with dramatic changes and have fun with it,” he shares.
So if you’re on board to sample something fresh, but don’t know where to start, allow us to bless your inspo boards with the expert-approved colours, cuts, styles and overall hair trends set to reign supreme in 2022…
Brassy has basically been a dirty word in the hair colour game for decades now, but it seems 2022 will see us leaning far more willingly toward warmth.
“Warm honey blondes are a vibe,” confirms Faith Williams, Founder and Director of BLONDEE, and Corthine couldn’t agree more: “Lived-in warmer-toned blondes will give life to full blondes,” he says. “Warm blonde shades such as golden, honey and caramel will give hair an instant brightening boost.”
“Copper hair tones will continue to be big next season,” says Uva, noting that Gigi Hadid is currently teaching a masterclass in how to rock faux red. “Whilst the concept of copper can sound daunting, it's surprisingly versatile because it works well with a lot of different hair types, skin tones and textures. There are so many different shades of copper which means it is super adaptable and everyone can wear it; the best way to approach copper locks is to tailor the shade to your eye and skin tone colour.”
“Spicy copper tones with rosy pink hues are also making a comeback,” adds Williams. “We love blending copper tones with pink highlights for depth and interest,” agrees Corthine.
Don’t stress if you’re not down to go all the way in the warmth department, though – it can be layered over darker locks, too. “Rich brunettes with sun kissed highlights will also be a trend,” confirms Corthine.
Images via: @maryphillips/@daniellepriano/@kaleteter
Face-framing cuts (and colours)
It’s not curtains for the curtain fringe just yet – in fact, quite the opposite. 2022 will be big on face-framing. “Curtain bangs [will] be one of the most requested fringe styles,” Williams shares. “They look good on just about everyone, so I think they are here to stay.”
The face-framing technique will trickle through to colours as well as cuts, just in a slightly subtler way than the ‘money piece’ or ‘E-girl’ trends of late. “Face frames have taken the world by storm,” says Williams.
“The past two years has been all about high impact face-framing, however, we are going to see them a lot softer through the roots in 2022. A face frame will never go out but instead of it popping so much from the root, you will be seeing more impact around the cheekbones rather than the root area.”
Images via: @allanface/@spaceykacey/@allanface
Faux-and-real colour blends
Don’t think you have to live in the salon all year, either – low-maintenance but highly chic options do exist, and the experts understand why you’d want to embrace them. “Having people work with their natural hair during COVID, I predict that a lot of people will opt to grow out their natural colour and work with what they have and simply highlight it with a fresh update,” says Corthine.
“Folks who have previously coloured their [natural colour] will be interested in blending [it in] but still looking polished,” he says. “For blondes this means fewer lowlights, light front face frames and less visible grow-out. Our brunettes will be focused on shine and health, possibly with a ‘peekaboo’ bright colour underneath.”
Williams agrees: “More and more people are really embracing their natural colour amongst their blonde, taking lived-in to a whole new level,” she says. “This type of colour will get you anywhere from 3-6 months in between visits.”
Images via: @audrinapatridge/@kaleteter/@cesar4styles
Nostalgic ‘90s everything
Are the ‘90s exiting the fashion and beauty arena anytime soon? Ugh! As if! “The ‘90s are really making a [continued] comeback,” declares Williams. “Claw clips are back and here to stay.”
“’90s styles are still having their time in the sun, so expect [plenty of] beading, and micro clips,” confirms Corthine.
It’s not all about accessories in a classic sense, either; you can craft the ‘accessories’ from your own hair, too. “Two braids at the front of your hair will be incredibly popular in 2022,” Williams notes.
Images via: @kaiagerber/@kattthompson/@ash_kholm
The lived-in look is extending to styles, too, and our heat-damaged hair is happy to hear it. “Sometimes [less] is more, and we will see more of that in 2022,” says Williams of the upcoming uprising in ‘effortless’ looks. “I expect we will see a shift toward more of these relaxed, natural style curls for 2022 – those barely there curls [and waves offer] the laid-back vibe of second-day hair.”
“Hairstyle trends in 2022 will take this year’s low maintenance styling up a notch,” agrees Uva. “We will see plenty of strong, bold shapes [cut wise, but they will be] more naturally styled and effortlessly cool. Blunter styles generally have more shape so require less styling to look good.”
Images via: @adamburrell/@kattthompson/@laurapolko
Chops & crops
The consensus re: cuts is that most people will be ready to shed a bit of length in favour of cooler, shorter chops; the edgier, the better.
“In 2022 haircuts will be very edgy,” says Uva. “I’m expecting to see lots of bold style statements such as pixie cuts, and even buzz cuts. The shorter the better. People more than ever are open to change and are going to want to cut away Covid.”
“The iconic bob will always be popular because nearly every face shape and hair texture can suit one, making them one of the most versatile looks,” seconds Deanna Parker Atwood, owner of Weiselmann Salon and AHIA Creative Australian Hairdresser of the Year 2021. “I also think with so many people having to neglect their haircuts, when we finally all emerge from COVID restrictions there will be a flurry of people ready to go for a big chop to start fresh.”
“In 2022 we will see more structure,” says Williams of the style of bob that will reign supreme. “The ‘cool girl’ blunt collar bone length lob with textured ends will be a go-to haircut. It’s a great length for all types of hair. By keeping the ends blunt, you can maintain that nice thickness and structure at your baseline to create that edginess whilst the texture adds more volume and movement. This haircut with blunt bangs is also going to be a big trend this season.”
“One cut in particular will be the complete pixie restyle, à la the gorgeous Zoe Kravitz, which really allows the features to shine,” says Corthine. “I also believe gender neutral haircuts will be the go too; think K-Pop boy band bobs.”
Images via: @patrickta/@jhope_bighitentertainment/Getty Images
Of course, there are still some people who may lean the other way, choosing to find drama in extra length rather than less of it. Yep, ‘Cher hair’ is back for yet another round. “I believe we will see a lot of extreme length [inspired by] the red carpets and catwalks, with celebs and models sporting very long hair for dramatic effect,” says Parker Atwood.
“Think the Met Gala, where lots of the hair had heavy extension work; long, sleek ponytails, waist-length hair and even hair touching the ground to take it to the next level. This will translate into clients starting to grow their locks out and focusing on hair health for beautiful long locks,” she explains.
Alternatively, if you’re just trying to test-drive the trend, you can follow the stars’ lock-lengthening lead with some extensions – the secret to success simply lies in finding ones that look realistic (and TBH, luxurious, even if they’re not really). Sleek hair done right looks more expensive than anything, after all.
Images via: Getty Images
The last few years have seen society making major strides toward finally not only accepting but celebrating natural curls and coils, and that will only continue from here on out.
“My biggest trend forecast is the return of the [natural] curl,” says Corthine. “Over 60 per cent of people have curly/wavy/coily/textured hair, and we are seeing them be happy to embrace their natural hair structure which is great. Curls are beautiful and unique, and I am looking forward to more hairdressers creating looks that work with natural hair.”
“Condition is key here, and hero products like k18 ($94.50 at Adore Beauty), Olaplex ($50 at Adore Beauty), and quality curl styling products like the evo curl range (pack available for $109.95 at Adore Beauty) will bring curly hair to the forefront where it belongs,” he suggests re: keeping your curls at their chicest.
Curl-specific cuts are also going to be an ally to all with natural texture. “Hairdressers can do amazing things to help control and manage curls through layering techniques, meaning you don’t need to straighten them out. Big beautiful curls are such a fun ‘80s-esque hair trend, and we are seeing a resurgence of those all over the world on the catwalks,” says Parker Atwood.
Images via: Getty Images/@chadwoodhair/@alannaarrington