Wolf Cut Hairstyles Are Taking Over Hollywood

Here's exactly how to style a wolf cut, according to the experts.

Billie Eilish with a wolf cut arrives at the 10th Annual LACMA ART+FILM GALA Presented By GucciLos Angeles County Museum of Art on November 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California
(Image credit: Samir Hussein/WireImage)

In case you missed it, everyone in Hollywood has the wolf-cut hairstyle now. The edgy, shaggy style has been spotted on the likes of Miley Cyrus, Billie Eilish, Keke Palmer, and more, so it's officially time that you took note of one of the biggest 2022 hair trends. And, because we at Marie Claire take dramatic hairstyle changes very seriously, we spoke to a few hair experts about what exactly you should ask for when you get to the salon. 

 But where did the style even come from? And why is it trending in 2022 alongside styles like ultra-voluminous blowouts a la Rachel Green from Friends? "I think they’re trending because they’re fun and edgy but aren’t as extreme as a mullet, so they’re less scary and grow out really cute," says New York City-based hair stylist Alexandra Efstratiou. Efstratiou has long been a fan of edgy, shaggy styles, and is one of the city's go-to's when it comes to recreating the trendy wolf-cut this summer. "There’s such an '80s and '90s aesthetic revival with fashion and media—like with the new Stranger Things season—so the inspiration is there but in a more modern, cool way." 

What is a "Wolf Cut?"

First things first, let's break down what exactly a "wolf cut" hairstyle even is. "A wolf cut is a playful combination of a shag and a mullet," says Amy Abramite, Creative Director and Stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago. "It’s a shaggy style with short layers up top that blend into curtain bangs that frame the face. The longer lengths are wispy with soft, airy ends that flick out. They are disconnected from the front with choppy layers for movement and separation."

Wolf cuts can look great on different lengths of hair and on different hair textures, so make sure to chat with your stylist about what would look the best on your specific face shape. "They can be worn on curly or straight hair so there’s a really broad appeal for the demographic they suit," says Efstratiou.

How Do You Style A Wolf Cut?

Okay, so you took the plunge and got a wolf-cut for yourself. Luckily,  styling the cut is super easy because it's all about that messy, undone vibe. "They’re all about texture!" says Efstratiou. "Think sea salt sprays and dry shampoos. they’re both great, but I’ve been really into spray wax type of products lately."

As for her favorites? Efstratiou has been loving products from luxury hair brand Oribe to get that messy, effortless look at one. She calls out two of the brand's best-selling products in particular: the Aprés Beach Wave and Shine Spray and the Matte Waves Texture Hair Lotion. She considers the former to be a combination of the best dry shampoo and a spray-wax-style product, and says  that it "can go on wet or dry hair." The latter "gives you you the salt spray look but with more moisture that you can put on wet and dry, and use it to blow dry or air dry naturally." 

Our Favorite Wolf Cut Hairstyles

Billie Eilish's Smooth Wolf Cut 

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Maybe  the most popular example of the oh-so-trendy wolf-cut is Billie Eilish's ice-blonde shag. Hers is a great example of how to turn your bob hairstyle into something a little edgier while it's in the tricky grow-out phase. 

Billie Eilish arrives at the 10th Annual LACMA ART+FILM GALA Presented By GucciLos Angeles County Museum of Art on November 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California

(Image credit: Steve Granitz/FilmMagic)

Miley Cyrus's Textured Wolf Cut 

If you have more of a lob haircut going on, consider getting a cut like Miley Cyrus's. Her wolf-cut look is full of voluminous texture and perfectly matches her rock-and-roll persona.  

Miley Cyrus attends the 10th Annual LACMA ART+FILM GALA presented by Gucci at Los Angeles County Museum of Art on November 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California

(Image credit: Amy Sussman/WireImage)

Rita Ora's Curly Wolf Cut 

If you have curlier hair, look no further than Rita Ora's shaggy wolf-cut. The curls are perfectly defined, but the longer layers around her face give the look dimension and volume. 

Singer Rita Ora visits the SiriusXM Studios on July 17, 2017

(Image credit: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)

Doja Cat's Choppy Wolf Cut 

One of the most dramatic wolf-cuts that I've ever seen is Doja Cat's from the 2021 GRAMMY Awards. It's essentially a mullet with longer face-framing layers! 

Doja Cat attends the 63rd Annual GRAMMY Awards at Los Angeles Convention Center on March 14, 2021 in Los Angeles, California

(Image credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

Maisie Williams's Two-Tone Wolf Cut 

Combine the wolf-cut trend with one of summer 2022's biggest hair color trends, the dramatic two-tone look a la Maisie Williams. Her ashy blonde hair has darker brown pieces blended in around her face, highlighting just how layered her cut really is. 

Actress Maisie Williams is seen arriving to Thom Browne Fall 2022 runway show at Javits Center on April 29, 2022 in New York City

(Image credit: Gilbert Carrasquillo/GC Images)

Debby Ryan's Long Wolf-Cut 

If your hair is wavy, Debby Ryan's wolf cut is the one for you. I mean, look at that texture! Her cut is also on the longer end, so it's a great example of how to change up your below-shoulder-length hair for summer 2022. 

Debby Ryan attends the "Spin Me Round" premiere during the 2022 SXSW Conference and Festivals at ZACH Theatre on March 12, 2022 in Austin, Texas

(Image credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for SXSW)
Fashion E-Commerce Editor

Julia Marzovilla is the Fashion E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.