How to Grow Out a Pixie Haircut With Style

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Throw the Awkward Stage Out the Window

woman with pixie haircut
Here I am on Day 1 of growing my pixie cut out. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

Growing out a pixie hairstyle can be tricky. How can you keep your hair from looking like you're a snip away from a mullet or something Miley Cyrus might dream up? Here are a few tips.


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Find a Great Hairstylist

Find a hairstylist you can trust—someone who will take your growing-out goal seriously and understands how to transition a haircut from pixie to a bob and beyond. It's not rocket science, but a skilled stylist understands hair growth patterns and ways to shape hair as it grows.

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Speed Up the Growth Process

woman growing out pixie haircut
Here's my hair two months into the growing out process. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

If you have the patience of a hungry toddler and your hair grows at a snail's pace, take heart. A few strategies might help (and if they don't make your hair grow any faster, they might at least help it grow stronger):

  • Take a good multivitamin that includes biotin.
  • Eat a nutritious, balanced diet, and drink plenty of water.
  • Keep your scalp clean and massage it well when shampooing.
  • Refrain from harsh treatments such as perms and coloring.

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Condition, Condition, Condition

woman growing out pixie haircut
Six months into growing my hair out. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

Four to six months in, you finally might feel like you're getting somewhere. Continue to condition well, especially in the dry months, to prevent brittleness and breakage. Coconut oil is a fantastic deep-conditioning treatment with long-lasting results.

Some stylists recommend F.A.S.T. Shampoo and Conditioner by Nisim. It's designed to provide the proteins and nutrients hair needs for optimal growth.

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Get Regular Trims

Believe it or not, you need to get your hair cut regularly as you're growing it out—ideally, every six to eight weeks. That keeps it neat and prevents it from morphing into some horrible non-style.

Keep the back short and allow the top and sides to grow so they eventually catch up with the back. This is one of the most important tips for avoiding an awkward in-between phase.

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Embrace the Mess

woman growing out pixie haircut
Having Fun with My Growing Hair. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

Experiment with different products as your hair grows and the overall shape changes. For example, while waxes helped hold up a few spunky sprigs in your pixie and gave it edgy texture, you might do better now with a smoothing balm that banishes frizz.

Get outside your comfort zone and try styles you might not ordinarily expect to like. Boost your hair up in a pompadour, or slick it back. Use a scrunching mousse for a messy, just-rolled-out-of-bed look, or work texturizer through to the ends for an edgy 'do.

Don't forget ornaments, either. A funky headband or sparkly barrettes can make your hairstyle look altogether purposeful, as if you're choosing this length and look rather than merely enduring it.


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Fake it Til You Make It

If you just can't deal with the wayward sprigs, flat spots, bushy sides, and other eccentricities of the growing-out pixie, get a wig or four. Seriously—they're a lot of fun. This is your chance to see what you'd look like as a cool ice blonde or a raven-haired punk icon. Try a blue bob or a pink shag. You don't have to spend a lot; lots of wigs are available that don't cost any more than a trip to the salon to cut off all your hair and start over. (Resist the temptation!)

Another fun way to hide your bedhead is to wear a hat. Bonus: At the beach or pool, a hat helps protect hair from sun damage. (Remember: You're trying to hang onto the health of all those hairs, even the stubborn ones, as they grow out.) You'll look chic, confident, and stylish even as you hide the chaos that lies beneath.

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Nine Months Later: It's a Bob!

woman growing out pixie haircut
The day I felt like I finally had a bob haircut, nine months after starting to grow my hair out. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

It takes about nine months before your hair takes on a bob shape (sooner if it grows more quickly than average or you're attempting the grow-out during the warm months). At this point, you can go longer without trims (but no longer than 10 weeks or so).


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One Year Down: No Limits

woman growing out pixie haircut
Hair growth progress after one year. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

At this point, adding curl, flipping the sides, or otherwise styling your hair won't look as awkward, so play, play, play. Continue to experiment. Hairpins, clips, and headbands are your friends, especially when you're at the gym or outdoors in the wind. Keep your eye out for mid-length cuts and styles you like so you know what to ask for when you get trims.


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Hitting Big Milestones: The Pony and the Braid

woman growing out pixie haircut
My hair is finally long enough to braid. Photo © Kendra Aarhus

It might take as long as 15 months or so to be able to pull your hair back in a ponytail, assuming your hair in pixie was approximately 2 inches long when you first began your hair-raising odyssey. You should be able to French-braid your hair in a couple more months.