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From Y2K Sleek to the New-Gen Beehive—The 5 Biggest Hairstyle Trends of 2022

Photographed by Nagi Sakai

As a generation, I’d argue we’re not that geared up when it comes to major styling. Fair play, in the noughties, hairstyle trends were all about working out how to straighten our hair poker-straight like Regina George and Destiny’s Child. And in the 2010s we all got to grips with breezy beach waves. But so far, so low-key.

When it comes to intricate updos, velcro rollers and phwoar blow dries, most of us would probably say we’re pretty under-qualified. But as an antidote to the total absence of glam that 2020 and 2021 bestowed upon us, 2022 is lining up to be the year of the major glow-up, especially when it comes to our hairstyling.

The ‘90s supermodel blow dry is back in a big way, beehives have been given a modern twist and as for those sleek Y2K strands we mentioned earlier? They’re making a mega return, too.

These are the biggest hairstyle trends to have on your radar for 2022, according to top stylists…

Y2K straight & sleek


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Dust your straighteners off because they’re about to see a lot more action. “The noughties are back, with a focus on super straight and sleek strands,” confirms celebrity hairstylist and Tangle Teezer brand ambassador, Liam Curran, who counts Lana Del Rey, Cara Delevingne and Lindsay Lohan as clients. He credits millennials and Gen-Z’s nostalgic obsession with the era for bringing back the key trend. And, for inspo of it in action, look to Dua Lipa, Gigi Hadid, Rita Ora and Kim Kardashian, he says.

“A big trend for me has to be the uber chic Y2K long. straight sleek, shiny hair,” agrees top hair pro and Babyliss ambassador, Syd Hayes. “It’s all about length but also healthy-looking, glossy hair,” he says. “There is a feeling of power and sophistication that comes with straight hair whether its poker-straight and centre-parted, side-parted with a wet look edge, or short and sleek.” As for nailing it this time round, “I like to gently press the hair rather than holding the straightener tightly and dragging – this way you don’t lose any of the shine,” recommends Syd.

Bold & bouncy blowout

After months (and months) of staying in, we want a hairstyle to take us out. “2022 is the return of the glossy blow-out,” says Syd. “I envisage we’ll be moving away from the loose, beachy waves we’ve seen over recent years to full bodied, glossy, glam hair,” says Syd. Luke Hersheson, top London hair stylist and CEO of Hershesons agrees. “There’s been a huge move toward big ‘90s blow-outs again. Think deep side-parted, flipped-over hair, like Adele’s wearing right now,” he says. “This season it’s all about volume and high shine with a smooth finish,” says Liam who references the supermodel blow-dry Kendall Jenner’s been wearing of late. For a shortcut that won’t give you arm ache, a hot brush like the Babyliss 9000 Cordless Hot Brush will take some of the hard work out.

Shaggy and textured


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The ‘70s shag that dominated last year isn’t going anywhere, it’s just become more personalised as we all create our own renditions. “The shag and mullet has had a softer, more polished upgrade for 2022,” says Liam. Rather than referring simply to the cut, the texture is what’s key and we can incorporate that even if we don’t go quite so heavy on the choppy layers. “The new-gen look is more wearable in comparison to the more extreme, shorter layered looks we have been seeing everywhere in 2021,” says Liam. “Not only is the new shag cut softer, but the styling has lots more bounce, volume and an overall more polished finish.”

Baby braids


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We saw baby braids taking off last year, but for 2022, they’ve cemented their spot as the go-to hair accent for cool-girls. “One of the biggest breakthrough hair trends going into next year, is the baby braid,” confirms Liam. Bonus, it’s quick and simple. “It’s loved by celebrities such as FKA Twigs, Addison Rae, Bella Hadid and Hailey Beiber and the trend’s been seen on the runways at Altuzarra, Proenza Schouler, Erdem, Studio 189” Liam adds, “so you know it’s here to stay. The good news is, it’s super versatile. “This hair look suits any hair texture, length or style and can be worn in different ways depending on how you style them,” he says. For instance, “small face-framing braids can have a boho ’70s feel or more of a ’90s look, drawing from both the grunge and street-style influencers,” he says. Pair them with straight hair, wavy hair, or more braids.

The modern beehive


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If there’s one curveball hairstyle we keep seeing crop up amongst celebs, it’s the beehive. It may sound retro, but combined with a looser, more relaxed texture, it’s been given a modern makeover. “Volume came back in a big way in 2021, and in 2022 we’ll be seeing updos and half-up ‘dos like Adele and Anya Taylor-Joy have been wearing,” says top hairstylist, Frédéric Fekkai. “This softer version of the ‘60s style is a fresh, modern take on a timeless trend. The finish is smooth but still touchable.” We’ve seen pretty renditions from Sex Education’s Aimee Lou Wood and Kim Kardashian.

Read Next: The Statement Hair Colors To Try In 2022, According To The Pros

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