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As promised, today I'm posting an update to my 6-month pixie cut grow-out post! You can find the original post, which shows my first 6 months of pixie growth, right HERE.
It’s now been a little over a year since I decided to grow out my pixie cut, so hopefully this will give you an idea of what to expect if you’re starting to grow out your hair (or maybe give you a little confidence boost if you’re tempted to try a pixie cut but are scared of the grow-out afterwards!).
When I was about 4 months into my grow out, I asked my hairdresser to cut it into an A-line shape (shorter, stacked layers in the back with longer layers and side-swept bangs in the front). I think this was a really good haircut to grow with—the neck/mullet area of a pixie cut grows in really fast and the front layers around the face take a longer time to catch up, so an A-line cut really helped keep the back under control while the front grew in.
It does feel a bit slow since the back view of your head doesn’t change much during those first 6 or so months, but I think we all know that a mullet is not the answer, and unfortunately that IS how a pixie grows in if you aren’t diligent about cutting off the neck layer.
I really enjoyed this short A-line cut and would definitely get this haircut again someday—I thought it was cute and fun, it’s easy to style, and it looks great with hats/headbands/clips when you want a little variety. It's just long enough to be able to play with a bit, without being too much work.
By about 7-8 months post-pixie (with regular mullet trims every 6-ish weeks), my hair looked like this:
Still growing into that A-line shape that I had started trimming it into earlier, but it was getting long enough that the back layer (which you can barely see, I’m sorry for not taking better pictures!) was starting to be able to grow in at the same pace as the front. At this point, when I went in for trims, I got actual, all-over trims, not just hacking off the mullet so the front could catch up.
We had family photos taken in April, which was about 9 months into my grow-out. I already shared these pictures in this post, but they give you a better look at the length/style than my unimpressive selfies do . . .
Now we’re getting to the point where my real life started to get awfully busy—vacations, house-hunting, a constantly teething toddler, a sister’s hospital stay, then buying and renovating and moving into our new house—so I unfortunately don’t have many pictures between 9 months and today (about 14 months).
I was actually kind of surprised to not be able to find any pictures of myself for 4-ish months (none that showed my hair, at least), but this awkward selfie about 10-11 months in is the best I can find--it has reached collar length, and is long enough to barely brush my shoulders (which felt bizarre after a few years of very short hair!):
And this brings us to today. I’m a bit late posting an update—I’m actually a little over a year into my grow-out now (about 14 months), but what can I say. I wasn’t even that great at taking a monthly picture when I was pregnant, for pete’s sake. I’m certainly not going to be on top of taking a monthly hair picture.
I like it best a little wavy, like that picture above, but I suppose straight is probably better for this post’s purposes.
I finally got a haircut a month ago (it had been a while!), and the hairdresser started to even out the A-line (shorten the front layers so they’re about the same length as the back). She wanted to take it shorter than I was willing to go, because there are a few spots that still haven’t caught up with the rest.
Do you remember in my last grow-out post, I mentioned a ‘hole’ in the side where the shortest layer of the pixie, right above my ear, had been? Well, that spot is still a bit shorter than the rest—see, in these profile shots, where there’s a shorter spot right around my ears? My hairdresser said we really ought to take it all up to that short layer so it can grow in evenly, but I couldn’t do it. I’ve been growing it out for too long to lose like 3 inches all in one go. That shorter spot doesn’t bother me at all, so I’m just ignoring it for now. I think it’ll work itself out over a few months of regular trims.
There you have it. One year of hair growth, from a pixie to a shoulder-length long bob (I believe the kids these days are calling it a lob). All in all, it has actually been pretty fun to watch it grow. I was really nervous about growing out that very short haircut—I expected month after month of awkward-looking hair that never really looked quite right—but there were actually only a few weeks early on when I didn’t like the way it looked, and it didn’t take as long as I expected to look like an actual style instead of awkward grow-out hair.
Now, I’ll try to answer a few questions that I get asked frequently on my previous post. Bear in mind that I am NOT a professional hairstylist, and I don’t know a lot about hair care or growth or styling or anything. I just enjoy experimenting with it.
What products do you use?
I’ve never in my life used professional salon products up until this past year. I figured this would be a good time to splurge on some quality stuff to make my grow-out a little more enjoyable. And since I was a complete newbie to professional products and had no idea what to look for, what was worth spending on, and what wasn’t necessary, I took the easy way out and just bought everything that Kate of The Small Thing’s Blog says she uses on a daily basis.
My thoughts on her product recommendations: I love the Kenra 25 hairspray. I can’t say enough good things about it--it gives a lot of lift if used at the roots, and great control. I'll definitely make this a regular purchase.
I also really like the Aquage Uplifting Foam; it definitely helps give my very fine hair a little body and root lift. I think the Redken Body Full shampoo and conditioner are fine, but I don't feel like I see any particularly mind-blowing results. Same with the Extreme CAT—I haven’t noticed any change at all by using it, but this could be because it is meant to strengthen and repair weakened hair, and I think my hair is already pretty healthy (I don't color it, and limit my use of heat). Perhaps someone with more damaged hair would see some results!
How do you get away with only washing your hair every 3 or 4 days?
I try to minimize the stress I put on my hair by not washing/styling it too often, and I use dry shampoo in between to keep it looking fresh. I get the occasional question of what dry shampoo I like and would recommend. Honestly, any of them. I’ve tried probably a dozen different brands and honestly have been equally pleased with all of them. I’m not sure this is a product worth splurging on. The only real difference I’ve noticed between brands is the scent (I don't think any of them smell particularly great, but some really do smell bad), so I guess I wouldn’t recommend one brand in particular, but rather would just recommend you find a scent you like.
Can you tell me how you style your hair?
Guys, I have no idea. I’ve never been great at styling my hair, but I’m getting better. Once again, I’ve found Kate’s tutorials helpful.
I get the best results for a straight style when I flip my head upside down and blow dry it upside down, with the blow dryer pointing down towards the floor. Then I use a flat iron just on the pieces that are unruly (my hair is very fine, and if I use the flat iron everywhere, my hair just ends up completely flat and gets very staticky).
And for the wavy style pictured earlier, I also blow dry upside down until just the roots are dry, then let the ends dry naturally (I have just a *tiny* bit of natural wave, although not a whole lot!) and use a flat iron or curling iron to add a few loose waves throughout the top layer.
I can usually manage to get 3-ish days out of each with the help of some dry shampoo and redoing a curl or two (or straightening a piece or two) each day.
Here’s to many happy hair days!