How to style the 'smullet' trend, 2024's shorter take on the mullet

If Florence Pugh and Kristen Stewart can rock it, so can you

Beauty Crew Beauty Editor / March 14 2024

Haircut trends like the mullet never really seem to go out of style, they simply adapt to the current styles of the time they exist in. 

Back in the '80s, a mullet was usually paired with a tightly coiled chemical perm. In the early '00s, it was influenced by emo and rock street style and bands that were popular at the turn of the millennia. In 2020, mullets had another resurgence with dramatically long tails and choppy fringes that lasted well into 2022. 

It's only been four years since its last iteration, but the mullet is making its way to the top of the trend heap once again. However, this time around it's shorter than ever before and slightly more refined (much like the kitty cut AKA 2024's take on the wolf cut). Oh, and we're calling it a 'smullet' now. 

Florence Pugh's adopted the haircut as she grows out her buzzcut, showing us the versatility of the short in the front and sides and long-ish in the back style. Kristen Stewart rocked a wavy take on the trend on the cover of Rolling Stone, but we're not sure that's why the image of the actress on the publication's face has gone viral. 

Keen to know more about this edgy new take on the mullet hair trend? Keep scrolling for the lowdown and some helpful styling techniques too...

What is the 'smullet' haircut?

"The smullet is a short version of a classic mullet," Sarah McKenna, founder of The London Hair Lab, told Country & Town House. "It’s a low-maintenance cut that still makes a statement."

"The mullet first became popular in the '70s and '80s, but is now experiencing a bit of a resurgence in 21st century, partly thanks to some of our favourite celebrities wearing it in new ways and making it a super stylish and sophisticated haircut," she explained. "The smullet is short and flirty – and this modern version pairs perfectly with dimensional colours. [It's] a softer look, the short layered top and textured cut suit both poker straight and curly hair perfectly. Any hair type and texture can pull off this cut."

"The skill of a smullet is all in the cutting," she went on to say. "The classic formula of a mullet is short on the top, shorter on the sides and left long at the back. This can be adapted to suit the different variations of the mullet such as the smullet."

How to style the 'smullet'

The best way to style a smullet is to work with your natural texture, so if you have curls, lean into your natural curl pattern with a curl cream — we recommend Bread Beauty Supply Hair Cream Elastic Bounce Leave-In Curl Styling Cream ($49 from Sephora).

You can also enhance texture with a texturising sea salt spray such as Davines MORE INSIDE Sea Salt Spray ($45.95 from Adore Beauty) or a dry texturising spray like the Cool Girl Barely There Texture Mist from Hair by Sam McKnight ($53.46 from Cult Beauty).

The smullet is intended to look edgy without much work, so you can enjoy a low maintenance hair styling ritual if you embrace this haircut.

Briar Clark got her start in the media industry in 2017, as an intern for Marie Claire and InStyle. Since then, her keen interest in fashion and beauty has landed her gigs as a Digital Content Producer and Beauty Editor with titles like Girlfriend, Refinery29, BEAUTYcrew and beautyheaven. She loves the way seemingly innocuous topics like skin care and style have the ability to put a smile on people’s faces or make them think about themselves a little differently. A big believer in self love and experimentation, Briar has made a point of becoming the Australian beauty industry’s unofficial guinea pig for unusual treatments and daring hair trends. When she’s not testing out the latest beauty launches, Briar is big on broadening her horizons, mostly in the form of food but she’s also partial to travelling to new destinations both near and far (and of course, allocating an extra bag to bring their best beauty offerings home with her).

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