When your hair is too long to count as a pixie cut, yet too short to earn you a spot in the Guinness World Records, you're in the ideal zone for trying out virtually every single hairstyle in existence. Congrats, mid-length folks—the (hair) world is your oyster, and is it fantastic. But it wasn't always this way: You were either team long or team super short when it came to the length of your locks. Thankfully, the world has taken a leap towards a compromise, allowing medium-length hair to rule our Instagram feeds once again.
Celebrities ranging from Rihanna to Celine Dion are letting medium-length hair reign. Whether you're in the market for a look that's the ultimate homage to the '90s or want to channel retro Hollywood glamour, we have just the hairstyle for our medium-length hair queens. Never search through endless pins on Pinterest again for inspiration on how to spice up your hair routine, we got just the style you were looking for right here. To help you get started on your new life of excellent hair days, check out 55 of our favorite celeb-inspired haircuts and styles.
Chloe Bailey's Gorgeous Dreadlocks
A deep part can work wonders on any style. Case in point: Bailey's beautiful locs. Clip one part of your hair with a fun accessory or add a couple of subtle bejeweled hair accents for good measure, as Chloe does.
Rihanna's Blunt Cut
If your hair is on the thicker side, try this chic style. The cut makes the top layer look longer, with a blunt effect on the edges to round out the shape.
Keke Palmer's Clipped Side Bangs
If you're going for the prim and proper vibe, but don't want your style to lean too schoolgirl, adding a chic clip is your best bet. It gets the hair out of your eyes and accessorizes your outfit all in one. Talk about the ultimate 2-in-1.
Corinne Bailey Rae's Stunning Natural Style
If you're looking for something low maintenance, but with gorgeous results, try a natural style like twist-outs, braid-outs, or bantu knots. Post-shower, gently wring out any excess water in your hair. Then wrap your hair in a microfiber towel for five minutes. When the time is up, apply your leave-in conditioner throughout or a styler as you proceed with your twists or braids.
Yara Shahidi's Curly Middle Part
If you have curly hair, don't let that stop you from a middle part. Center parts look great with all textures as they automatically draw attention to your face while giving you crazy good volume.
Jennifer Lawrence's Piece-y Ponytail
Long gone are the days when your hair had to be the same color all-over. The hair trend "money piece" involves face-framing highlights towards the front of your hair, like Lawrence's, made possible by the balayage technique. The best part of all? It looks good on everyone.
Priyanka Chopra Jonas' Subtle Layers
If you have medium-length hair, you know the power of layers, so just think of what subtle layers can accomplish. They automatically add texture to your hair, no hot tools required, and require less upkeep.
Sandra Oh's Shaggy Cut
Shag is the ultimate cool-girl look. Whether your shag is straight or curled like Oh's, it's a step above basic bangs. For an added twist: curl your hair away from your face rather than towards it, to create even more volume.
Janet Mock's Angled Layers
When you take this style to your stylist, make sure to let them know you don't want the shorter side to be longer than your chin length. This is to make sure you don't miss out on any volume the haircut will bring.
Ciara's Curly Topknot
Buns shouldn't just be for days when you don't feel like washing your hair, they also look great styled. Pull some small pieces out to curl around your face, add a fun headband, then boom you have a red carpet-ready look like Ciara.
Ashley Graham's Wet Textured Bob
Remember that mousse-scrunched hair you did in middle school? This is that same style, all grown-up! First, start with damp hair, use a conditioning mousse or soft gel, then finger comb the product through your hair for this fab, shower-esque style.
Charlize Theron"s Deep Part with Side Bangs
Charlize Theron is the queen of hair transformations, so it's no surprise she pulls of this deep part with curled side bangs. Fine hair people this is the style for you since it appears your hair has more volume.
Constance Wu's Sleek Lob
The 90s called and they said Constance Wu rocked this curled-at-the-ends lob. This style perfectly frames multiple face shapes so we highly recommend giving it a go.
Elle Fanning's Asscorized Lob
On those lazy days it seems like the last thing you want to do is style your hair. I get it. Therefore, adding a hair clip like Elle Fanning here makes all those ones you wore in middle school seem cool again.
Natalia Dyer Loos Curl Side Part
If only Nancy Wheeler had this lewk on Stranger Things! Like any good side part, it makes it seems like your hair has way more volume. What's great about this is the small curls give that volume a little extra boost.
Hailey Baldwin's Bow-Filled High Ponytail
Bows are just one of the many accessorizes you can add to make your ponytail a little bit more glitzy this season. Some people might say schoolgirl, but that's just another name for fashion-forward.
Sophie Turner's Tumble of Curls
When in doubt, throw your hair over your shoulder and give the ends a quick curl. The soft bends will create a pretty spiral that catches the light juuuuust right.
Jessica Alba's Ombre Lob
An ombré fade is one of the easiest ways to add some character to a basic brunette lob, and Alba is making us all want to go out and get highlights.
Chrissy Teigen's Feathered Bangs
Blunt, thick bangs can look (and feel) heavy when paired with a shoulder-length cut, but Teigen's piece-y bangs stay soft and fluttery, thanks to the graduated layers framing her face.
Gabrielle Union's Curly Topknot
Let us all bow down to Union's perfectly perfect curls, which are amped up by a slicked-back topknot and waved edges, which adds some structure to this fuller style.
Emily Ratajkowski's Soft Side Braid
Even if your hair isn't as long as Ratajkowski's, you can fake the length by tying off your over-the-shoulder braid with a long black ribbon, which gives the illusion of Rapunzel-level hair. To keep the look from feeling schoolgirl, gently tug and pull the loose layers around your face and wrap them around a curling wand for texture.
Zendaya's Brushed-Out Waves
Soft, fluffy, and voluminous, Zendaya's waves look like she just rolled out of bed in the '50s, and we mean that in the most envious of ways. For the most authentic finish, blow-out your hair and, while it's still warm, wrap two-inch pieces of hair around jumbo velcro rollers for 30 minutes. Spritz with hairspray, unravel, and then brush through your curls with a boar-bristle brush.
Tessa Thompson's Side-Swept Waves
This simple hairstyle requires just a few bobby pins: Tuck and pin your hair back behind one ear to add an undercut element, then go to town with some over-the-shoulder poses to capture the full cascading effect.
Keri Russell's Bouncy Waves
Keri Russell has maintained some of the best hair on TV since her Felicity days, but it's her bouncy waves that have us wondering what gravity-defying feat is happening here. Her hair stylist Brian Magallones has said he relies on volumizing spray for the added bounce. For the waves themselves, he curls them in two-inch sections and pins them to her scalp while they cool for some added staying power.
Dita von Teese's Satiny Retro Vibe
Dita von Teese has the pin-up look down. Her secrets to that shiny, satiny, wavy finish? Hair masks, barrel rollers, setting spray, and a really excellent cut, sans layers.
Halle Berry's Caramel Highlights
Eye-skimming bangs, a smattering of caramel highlights, and subtle waves? Halle Berry has perfected the formula to flattering, never-boring hair.
Emma Watson's Beachy Highlights
If you're currently studying this photo saying, "What Hermione magic was done here?" then we're with you. But it's less magic and more really expert coloring: The cornflower highlights at the ends of her hair lend a mystical sun-dipped glow to her waves.
FKA Twigs' Curly Lob
Super-tight curls make for the ultimate level of texture in this red-carpet style. Part your hair on the side for even more added volume.
Taylor Swift's Feathery Lob
If you're rocking a lob, nix the satiny, straight-ironed look for a more natural, "I woke up like this" texture. Consider trying out eye-skimming bangs on your next cut to add even more dimension.
Ashley Benson's Fading Roots
The most important take-away of this look? Having a few inches of grow out is actually pretty cute. Instead of re-dyeing your roots, ask your colorist to blend some of your natural hue into the blonde dye by the roots, so it looks more natural.
Sienna Miller's Beachy Waves
If you can't actually soak up some naturally salty texture from a beach vacation this summer, recreate the look by spritzing sea salt spray on stick-straight hair, before twisting random sections around a medium-barrel curling iron.
Kate Middleton's Barrel Curls
A pile of softly spiraled barrel curls near the ends of Kate's hair turn this basic blow-out into something worth screenshotting.
Emma Stone's Flipped-Out Ends
These swooping ends are the physical manifestation of the 💁 emoji, all thanks to a little round-brushing action away from the face.
Kirsten Dunst's '90s Style
We wouldn't mind breaking our crimping iron out of storage if it meant we could recreate these beachy waves at home. Luckily, you can get the same effect by braiding your slightly damp hair, wrapping the braid into a knot, and sleeping on it.
Thandie Newton's Voluminous Curls
Westworld star Thandie Newton shows us how to wear picked-out, fluffy disco curls like a boss (pssst: It's all about the umbrella technique).
Diane Kruger's Floral Updo
If you're ever in doubt about how to amp up your mid-length cut, grab the nearest poinsettia or sprig of flowers and bobby-pin them back behind your ear. (Fake florals are just as good if you have no access to Martha Stewart's garden.)
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley's Volume
Supermodel volume isn't rocket science: Dry your damp hair upside-down, using a wide round brush to curve your face-framing layers around your jaw. Done and done.
Rose Byrne's Ribbon Highlights
The creamy ribbon highlights give each of Byrne's soft curls an intense, yet natural-looking, definition.
Solange's Soft Texture
This brushed-out style is all about embracing your natural frizz, which is a given asset of any curly hair. To get the look, run a wide-tooth comb through the mid-lengths to ends of your curls for a soft finish.
Martha Hunt's Piece-y Waves
Don't worry, ladies with fine hair—your waves will be just as bouncy as your thick-haired counterparts as long as you get a smattering of short layers cut into your style. Ask your stylist to start at the cheekbones and work their way down for immediate texture.
Suki Waterhouse's Bendy Ombré
Enhance your ombré by curling just the mid-lengths of your hair and leaving the roots straight. Total game-changer in how the light will hit your hair.
Jennifer Aniston's Dimensional Highlights
Yes, you've got your Rachel-esque choppiness going on here, but this cut also uses subtle babylights to add depth and texture to a straight style.
Priyanka Chopra's Pinned-Back Curls
When you've got too much hair to know what do with (or just end up with some wonky curled strands, which happens to the best of us), pin back a section of curls hair behind your ear for some asymmetrical action.
Margot Robbie's Flipped-Over Volume
We have a lot of feelings about blunt ends on shoulder-length hair, and all of them are good. To get this voluminous front wave, try blowing out your hair like usual, the flip your part to the opposite side of your head.
Kerry Washington's Perfect Ponytail
May we all observe a moment of silence for this perfectly smooth and voluminous ponytail. To recreate at home, slick back hair into a tight ponytail, then gently tug at the hair on the crown of your head to loosen the ponytail and create volume. Twist random sections of hair around a curling iron, brush them out, and go forth into your dreamy, picturesque future.
Emily Blunt's Wavy Lob
Pro tip for people who suffer from #StraightHairStruggles: Let your wet hair dry in a messy bun. Once you take out the elastic, you'll be left with loose waves that look totally natural.
Katy Perry's Brushed-Out Curls
So much volume, so little time. What did we do before the days of Dry Bar? We stuck in some hot rollers, let the hair cool, brushed out the curls, then spritzed with hairspray to get Katy Perry's soft curls.
Miranda Kerr's Messy Part
In case Kerr's choker hadn't tipped you off, the '90s are back. This era-appropriate look modernizes the best hair trend of the decade—that super casual, just-ran-my-hands-through-it vibe.
Rashida Jones's Long Bangs and Low Pony
The best part about medium-length hair is you can totally pull off a low ponytail, without looking blah. Extra points for thick, lash-skimming bangs.
Irina Shayk's Fluffy Waves
Fact: Humidity leads to fluffy hair. Second fact: Fluffy hair is in. Pin one side back, add a sprig of flowers or a barrette, and you'll totally look like a casual mermaid/supermodel.
Jessica Chastain's Mega-Shiny Waves
These loose cascading waves are catching the light in an ethereal, other-worldly way. One more reason to invest in a good blow-dryer and shine spray.
Mischa Barton's Voluminous Waves
Round brush, round brush, and round brush some more to get this kind of amped-up volume at your roots. When you're done, wrap the ends around a flat iron to create those subtle spirals.
Beyoncé's Soft Curls
The good news: You can get a faux layered look by combing out your curls with a wide-tooth comb. The bad news: You have to break out ye olde curling iron to get the curls in the first place.
Keira's Knightley's Thick Bangs
There are too many benefits to being able to hide your gaze behind loose, falling-in-your-eyes bangs. Number one: Being able to avoid all eye contact with strangers.
Christina Hendricks' Half-Updo
If you have short side bangs, clip your hair back (half-up, half-down) and tease your crown to get this Mad Men-esque look. Optional: Take it one step further with some cat-eye shades.
Bianca Rodriguez is the Commerce Editor/Writer at Hearst Magazines Digital Media, where she covers fashion, beauty, home, and more. She likes long walks through shopping malls, a good book, and thinks a closet without platform sneakers is a travesty.
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