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Last updated: July 25, 2017

Sam Villa’s 6 Best Bob Tips

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By Jackie Summers


Pixies grew out, long ends got fried from years of hot tools and haircolor and suddenly, bobs and lobs made sense. They were fresh, healthy-looking and versatile. Long enough to pull into a ponytail for workouts, short enough to actually style. And the bob renaissance is still going strong. Do your bob skills need an upgrade? Here are 6 cutting and styling tips from Sam Villa, bob master and four-time BTC Stylist Choice Winner for Favorite Educator.


1. Consistent Graduation
Consistency is the key when creating a graduated bob. I suggest working from one side to the other to maintain control of your elevation from the left to right side. Completing one side then moving to the other affects consistency. It’s also difficult to maintain the same finger angle from side-to-side. To create roundness and maintain consistency with the angle, elevate the nape area vertically and cut horizontally, then cut the length.


2. The Brush Measure
When trying to determine how short to cut the layers in the top of a bob, find out what brush size the client uses to style her hair. If she uses a medium round brush, wrap a section around this brush. This tells you how short to cut the top.


3. Zig-Zag
When layering a bob that has no fringe, create a round, zig-zag section that incorporates some of the top and crown areas. The size of the section will depend on the density of the hair. The zig-zag ensures a soft, diffused edge. This is ideal for fine hair, and it prevents over-layering.


4. To the Side
I used to cut my side-swept fringes too short and when I tried to brush them to the side they collapsed. You must have enough length to create this fringe. Also, sometimes they collapse from too much weight. Remove weight in this area with a blending shear by weaving in a diagonal line and closing and backstroking with the shear.


5. “C” the Difference
One of my favorite ways to create modern waves in a bob is with a flat iron. Begin anywhere on the head and grab a 1-inch, square section. Form a c-shape and press the ‘c’ with the flat iron. Work down the section and form another ‘c’ in the opposite direction. Press it again with the flat iron—now you’ve created an s-wave pattern. Continue along the section and on random sections throughout the head to create casual movement.


6. Face Facts
For a round face, a slightly longer bob will minimize width. Avoid full fringes and center parts. A side part is ideal. If the client’s face is square, keep the length past the jaw and the texture wispy. An offcenter part and sweeping, angled fringe will soften a square. A razored bob with lots of texture, parted on the side with a full, wide fringe is beautiful when the face is diamond-shape. And if the face is triangular, try an extreme side-swept fringe with a little volume at the crown and chin length.


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