If you want to know what haircut to get at any given moment, George Northwood is a pretty good man to ask. The hairdresser to celebrities including Alexa Chung , Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Laura Bailey, Northwood is in the know. And his tip right now is the bob. “I have noticed a thing at the moment where women want to cut their hair and make a statement,” he says. “It’s part of an experimental moment where girls want hair to say something about them.” Hence the uptake of the bob.
Northwood is so into the style, in fact, that he has launched a Bob Bar in partnership with Redken at his central London salon. It sounds gimmicky but the truth is, Northwood isn’t plucking the style out of the air. He is reacting to requests from customers in his salon, but celebrities have also opted for the bob in droves. Lady Gaga, Jessica Alba and Ellie Goulding are three who have had the chop this year and they follow Sienna Miller and Jennifer Lawrence.
Its new popularity has even been linked to the country coming out of recession, something Northwood agrees with. “Times are getting better and girls are more confident in themselves,” he says, pointing out the way the bob plays into how we dress now.
Northwood advocates four types of bob including an Alexa-ish choppy number and a sleek style inspired by Margot from The Royal Tenenbaums and “the supermodel bob” – basically a long bob that means you hair is still long enough for an up-do. Northwood is anything but prescriptive as to which one you choose. These styles are jumping-off points – the idea being that you bespoke your bob to your own needs. There are even wigs to try out before you commit to the cut. “They’re interesting as a way to match your clothes – you can dress up if you have a messy bob for example, because it balances things out,” he says.
In short, bobs are fast becoming the haircut of 2015. Prepare yourself for the chop.