Shags 101: Cutting, Coloring & Stylingfeaturing Sebastian Professional
The year is 2020. Masks are the number one fashion trend, you’ve been invited to more Zoom meetings than parties and everyone knows how to bake bread. But the biggest surprise of all? Your clients are all requesting some version of the shag.
This throwback cut has emerged as the hottest trend of the year, and not only are shags trendy (they’ve been spotted on Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift), they’re also low maintenance - and isn’t low maintenance the true trend of 2020?
Brush up on your shag basics below by following these tips from Sebastian Top Artist Anthony Cress.
1. Follow These Shag Dry Cutting Rules
You’ve probably heard that shags are best done with razors on dry hair, but most of us have been told that dry-cutting with a razor is a no-go. Fear not, says Anthony - you CAN use a razor on dry hair as long as you:
- Use fresh blades. Anthony uses a new blade each time he starts a cut, and sometimes even changes blades during the cut.
Is there any time you should avoid using a razor for dry cutting? “I would only avoid it on overly curly, Z-shaped hair,” says Anthony.
2. Skim it to Win It
Here’s Anthony’s breakdown of skimming - the Sebastian signature cutting technique he uses on most of his shag cuts.
- Start with a vertical section, and visually measure that the top piece of the section (the shortest piece) falls at the crest of the occipital. “You want the top of the section to fall at the occipital in order to build out head shape and collapse in the nape area,” says Anthony.
- Work your way down the section. Keep in mind that a deeper skim (using longer strokes) removes more weight in the interior - which is exactly what you want for a shag!
3. A Tip for Shag Cuts on Fine Hair
Another misconception of the razor is that you should never use it on fine hair. Not true, says Anthony. “If you feather out the ends, this will actually push weight into the interior - aka using a razor on fine hair can actually make the hair look and feel thicker.” One caveat? Make sure you’re working with at least medium density hair, and do a shallow skim as opposed to a longer, deeper skim.
4. Follow a Visual Guide
When cutting a shag with a razor, use a visual guide instead of a traveling guide. “Because you’re using a texturizing technique, if you were to use a traveling guide, you could be taking out more hair from a section that has already had weight removed,” shares Anthony.
5. Disconnect the Shag Fringe
The trick to curtain fringe is having a subtle disconnection, so as you work your way back, leave the next section a little longer than the previous section.
6. Color your Shag Cut
To complement a Brigit Bardot-inspired heavy mop fringe, consider adding a pop of color, like Anthony did below. Anthony added a cool, violet-purple accent to this Level 9 blonde using Sebastian Cellophanes Ice Blonde + Cranberry Red + Sapphire Blue. After applying the color, he put under heat with a cap for about 20 minutes, then let it cool to the touch.
7. Finishing Touches
Here are a few ways Anthony styles his shags:
1. Use Sebastian Texture Maker on dry hair to build texture. Apply liberally as you direct the nozzle of a blowdryer upward.
2. Apply a liberal amount of Sebastian Shaper ID to dry hair, then scrunch and shape hair.
Get even more shag tips - Watch the full video below!