9 modern bob haircuts to know about: from Italian to French, midi and more

Written by Morgan Fargo

If you’re considering the big chop, these aesthetic modern bob haircuts will seal the deal.

Over the course of the last six months, several hairstyles have had a fêted resurgence: curtain bangs, slicked back buns and 00s hair accessories, to name a few. One style, that never went out of fashion per se, but has since undergone an intense modernisation is the bob. 

From new iterations of mid-length bobs (aptly coined the midi bob) to swept-over Italian bobs and painfully chic French bobs, there’s been an advent of polished and less-polished bob hairstyles coming to the fore. Here, I round up the nine I’ve been spotting and saving on Instagram and TikTok for months, preparing for my eventual big chop haircut. Be warned, they will make you want to cut it all off.  

  1. 1.

    Midi bob

    “The midi bob has a chunky heaviness on the ends that shows off the neck but is long enough to tie up,” explains Seán Paul Nother, half of leading hairdressing duo The Hair Bros. 

    “Because of the slightly longer length, it sits beautifully on both blow-dried and air-dried hair. It’s a tad longer than a 90s bob, which means you can throw your hair up on a hot day and have some beautiful Bardot-esque tendrils of hair frame your face. It also looks fantastic casually thrown to either side with a bit of dry shampoo or mousse.

    “The easy way to find your perfect length midi bob is by tilting your head forward. As you tilt your chin down, run your hand down the back of your neck. You should be able to feel a bone that sticks out slightly – think about the joint between the base of your neck and the top of your spine – it should be about where your neck and shoulders meet.”

  2. 2.

    French bob

    “The inspiration for the French bob comes from the 20s and 30s era,” explains leading hairdresser and L’Oréal Professionnel UK editorial ambassador Adam Reed. “It reminds me of Louise Brooks – it has that sultry jazz singer feel. It’s sassy and elegant.

    “It is a sharp, outlined, chin-grazing bob and the point of the bob should hit the corner of the mouth,” he adds. “The fringe should sit just above the brow – slightly shorter than a usual fringe but still super chic.

    “I recommend prepping the hair with heat protector, styling mousse or gel before blow-drying as this will give the hair a great mouldable hold,” says Reed, before adding that you can finish with hairspray for extra hold.

  3. 3.

    Italian bob

    The work of Nick Latham, the other half of the Hair Bros duo, the neck-grazing Italian bob is versatile and full of volume, with defined, heavy ends.

    In a detailed post on TikTok, Latham breaks down the style: “We start by cutting the length and finding a good base and really lightly graduating it into the baseline to make sure it’s got a bit of a softer finish. [Then we] work our way around to the front, making sure that the front corners aren’t left too long, and following that up by adding a bit of face-framing shape.”

  4. 4.

    90s bob

    Reminiscent of Keira Knightley’s iconic boyfriend bob in Bend It Like Beckham, the 90s bob style blends swept, long-layers with gently rounded ends. 

  5. 5.

    Collarbone bob

    A safe first-step to bob territory, the collarbone bob skims the shoulders, resting gently just below the clavicle. Lovely on all hair types, shorter layers add shape and volume to the mid-length hairstyle.

  1. 6.

    Round bob

    A style that eschews the straight bobs loved in the 90s and 00s, the rounded bob channels 80s energy and works beautifully on curly, wavy and textured hair types. Soft and rounded-under, it feels full of body, lift and organic movement.

  2. 7.

    Bottleneck bob

    An interation of the popular bottleneck bangs, the bottleneck bob incorporates the slim, softening fringe into a shorter styler. 

    “In essence, this hairstyle takes inspiration from the neck of a bottle: starting slim and short in the middle, curving longer around the eyes, and then longest following the line of the cheekbone,” explains leading hairstylist and Evo international creative director Tom Smith. 

    “This allows the length and angle to be adjusted depending on whether you want to make your cheekbones appear wider or stronger, or maybe you’d prefer to slim and narrow a wider face, drawing focus to your eyes and lips.

    “Bottleneck bangs also soften the face when tying your hair up into a bun or ponytail as you can leave them out to frame the face. You could also leave just the shorter softer fringe pieces or longer face-framing tendrils out, too.”

  3. 8.

    Flicked-out bob

    The flicked-out (or flicky) bob, so-called for the way the ends of the hair flick out away from the face, brings to mind a 50s-esque, preppy aesthetic. We’re not quite at rollerskating waitresses and a bumping jukebox, but we’re not far off.

  4. 9.

    Curtain bob

    How to make a bob feel infinitely fresh again? Add a curtain bang. Curtain bangs are (as the name suggests) a fringe that separates much like a curtain being pulled open. Draped across the forehead, they can sit long or short, be heavy or cut into to create lightness and fluffy volume. They can be rolled towards the face or swept away. They can be curly, straight, coily or wavy. Basically, anything goes.

Main image: Getty

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