Lupita Nyong’o Is the Latest Celebrity to Jump on the Short Hair Bandwagon

Goodbye, sisterlocks.

lupita nyong'o
(Image credit: Getty)

If you asked me to define 2023 hair trends in just one, single word, it would be "short." Hailey Bieber, Cara Delevigne, Michelle Williams, Kourtney Kardashian, Lily James, and oh so, so many more have chopped off inches upon inches. They’ve traded in their long locks for bobs and their bobs for pixies; the less length and the more lightweight the better. Now, Lupita Nyong'o is whipping out the scissors (literally) to get on board with the transformative trend. The Black Panther actress teased her transformation via TikTok and Instagram with a little help from hair mastermind Vernon François.

“I chopped off my sisterlocks! Here’s how I said goodbye,” Nyong’o captioned the clip. Her video kicks off with a very touching tribute to her bob-length locks. With Boyz II Men’s “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye” playing in the background, she preemptively mourns her inches. “It’s time to let you go. It’s sad—it’s oh so sad,” the actress says into the camera. “You’ve been so good to me. You’ve been so thick for the first time in my life. I’m going to miss you. Come back again.” 

Cut to a little “I’m not gonna do it, I’m just thinking about it” conversation between a scissor-holding Lupita and skeptical-looking Francois, and it was officially go time. The big chop happened off-screen (she left the cut to the pro), but Nyong’o made sure to show off the final result: A super short pixie bordering on buzz cut. “Lupita’s hair is so beautiful and versatile. She always looks stunning and the way she wears this hairstyle is no exception," François, a celebrity hairdresser, educator, and founder of VERNON FRANÇOIS® Haircare, exclusively tells Marie Claire. “A haircut like this can be rewarding, freeing, and exposing the nape is extremely flattering." 

But, don't be fooled—it can be a little high maintenance. “On first look it might seem lower maintenance, but hair growth will be more visible in this style, so maintaining the shape and length could mean more frequent salon visits," François explains. His recommendations? Pay attention to scalp care, reach for silk-lined hats and caps, use an oil (Spritz Overnight Repair Treatment Oils by VERNON FRANÇOIS® Haircare is his go to!), and do regular head massages.

None of this is *super* new to Nyong'o—a shorter style was her go-to look for years. In 2014 she told Essence: “I didn't always wear my hair short. In my adolescence, I always had long hair and it was relaxed. As of the age of 19, I just got really fed up with always going to the salon and it takes so much effort to look presentable before you leave the house. So, I just one day decided to cut it off, and I cut it all off!” Perhaps it was this same spontaneity that inspired her current switch-up! 

Samantha Holender
Beauty Editor

Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar,,, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.