3 Sep, 2014
Let’s skip the emo-bashing: everyone knows that emos have pretty hair. A short-long look suits both girls and boys, and so does a sweeping heavy emo fringe covering the face. A nice emo haircut can make you look like the shy/confident, vulnerably sexy little thing you are. Here’s how to get one:
- Hairdresser or home cut? If you go for cutting your own hair (as preferred by emos), then do it with a razor comb. These are really cheap – about 15 dollars or ten pounds. Have two mirrors in front and behind so you can see the back of your head. Cut the end-tips of your hair jaggedly – this is known as razor shearing. Remember to start off low down so if you make a mistake you can cut away to change it. If you start cutting too high up you don’t have the option to change mistakes. Remember that the fringe and sides are all-important, so don’t cut away too much in the back unless you’re going for crazy-spiky-short.
- Hair colour: Emo hair is whatever colour you want – no rules. Blonde, rich brown, mouse… it’s all good. But in place of rules emo has guidelines, and emo hair is frequently dyed black. It can be highlighted with brighter colours (blonde, auburn, red, blue, pink) to give more definition and edge. Highlighting the tips in bright colours – or going for minimal streaks – works well.
- Scene vs Pose: The rules on emo hair are pretty clear nowadays. Everyone’s heard of emo hair and all urban hairdressers know how to achieve the look. If you just like the hair, wear bright colours – do what you like. If you’re actually an emo, you may feel other people are stealing your scene, so consider being less obvious – go for naturalistic colours, not bright ones, to show you don’t need to overplay the emo card – you live it, not just dress it.
- The emo fringe: An emo fringe should cover half your face, even if you sometimes hold it back with pretty plastic hair clips. If you’re doing a home emo cut, make sure your hair parting is heavily to the left or right before you cut. Then your fringe will be good and heavy. Fringes are important in an emo hair cut – they shield you from the world, masking your identity, so you can reveal yourself to the world a little at a time.
- Keep it asymetric: What you’re looking for is a jagged style with different layers and cuts. An emo hairstyle has real shape and unusual proportions. Cutting your hair with a razor comb will definitely achieve this, especially if you’ve never done a home cut before. You can get your hair (long or short) to be asymetric through a styled cut or through spiking it with product. Like the emotional music that initially spawned the emo scene, emo hair should also be expressive and change frequently – emotion expressed in hair. It’s proper art, when you think about it.
- Layering and texture: You want lots of layers in your hair to make it freeform, with plenty of
movement. You want to look like a lost young child that has cut their own hair with scissors but still looks attractive, even if they feel a little bit ugly. Or you want a hairdresser to do this for you, so you look like a lost young child that has a really great hairdresser.
- Emo hair should be straight: There are no rules, but even so, classic emo hair is straight. If you’ve got curly hair, use straighteners. Or lots of mousse and gel. Or special straightening combs with a hairdryer. If you’ve got long curly hair you could cut the back off so it’s short and messy, spike it with product and just have a long sweeping fringe (this style works better for boys than girls). Straight hair is best for emo haircuts because it better displays the layering and texture.
- Emo hair should be individual: Yes, of course you can copy someone else’s haircut if you think it suits you. Just google for a photo of an emo hairstyle you like, and take it to a hairdresser and say “I want this”. But with future haircuts, think about getting creative, and maybe doing some of the layering yourself when the initial emo haircut grows out, or experimenting with minimal applications of bright hair dye to express yourself. Has any emo thought about Andy Warhol-style grey or silver hair? Or cosplaying their hair to get it looking like their favourite manga hero? Maybe not yet… not until some brave person gives it a go and posts the result on an emo community website. You could be the first!
- Emo hair, not punk hair: Punks couldn’t give a crap. Emos care a lot. They’re really nice sensitive people and they do actually care about things, including what they look like. Emo hair may require a lot of product, but it’s not gutter-punk – so emo hair should also be clean and sweet-smelling. Emo hair should ideally be glossy and in great condition, so give your hair occasional hot oil baths. You may feel closed off from much of the world, sometimes, but your gorgeous emo hair will make people want to hold you.
- What to say to the hairdresser #1: “I want a really choppy asymetric look, about shoulder-length – or maybe to my chin if you think it would suit me – with an accentuated heavy fringe and plenty of texture and razor shearing. And can you dye the tips?”
- What to say to the hairdresser #2: “I want an emo haircut.” (Then show them the photo you found on google.)
Emo community sites for more haircut ideas:
http://forums.livingwithstyle.com/showthread.php?t=282269 – Huge gallery of emo hair pics. And if you scroll down, a few of the emos describe how they did their hair! Big love!
emohairstyle.blogspot.com – Opinionated blog with lots of information on how to get the emo look, from makeup to straight hair to emo etiquette.
Photos used without the models’ consent but with our undying gratitude. We’re good pirates, not bad pirates, so email us if you want your profile shot removed! Or give us your details and we’ll link the photo to your Myspace…