The Wolf Cut: Create Alternative, Rock ’n’ Roll Vibes
The wolf cut is on track to be the hottest haircut of 2022… and clients can’t get enough! A hybrid of a mullet and a shag, the wolf cut is a continuation of recent trends towards lived-in, organic texture and movement. It’s a perfect edgy style for guests who want those alternative, rock ’n’ roll vibes.
Sam Villa ArTeam member Jesse Linares describes the wolf cut as “short in the front, party in the back”! He teaches a systematic method for building TONS of soft volume, texture and movement using pivoting guides and short-to-long layering. Read on to master this super-cool shaggy style!
Sectioning for the Wolf Cut
Start with wet hair. Section off a horse shoe parting from the front hairline to the crown along the partial ridge with Signature Series Clips.
PRO TIP: If your guest has a fine recession area along the front hairline add into your horseshoe section just a bit below the parietal ridge in front. This helps to maintain strength around the front hairline and prevent a hole in the face frame where it may be thinner.
Continue sectioning by using the teeth of your cutting comb against the parietal ridge. Roll the comb backwards towards center back. Create a straight line from the crown to the nape that follows the natural curvature of the head shape (almost like a mohawk section if continuing from the horseshoe).
The last partings will be on both sides of the head. Use your comb to carve out large “C” shapes around both ears and secure with clips.
Creating the Wolf Cut [Sides]
Point cutting is the hero technique for creating the textured, shaggy-effect of the wolf cut. Jesse recommends either point cutting with the midsize Classic Series Dry Cutting Shear in 6.5”, or using an open-and-close “chewing” motion with the 14 Tooth Point Cutting Shear until all the hair is cut.
Step #1: Begin your cut on either side of your guest’s head. Cutting palm-to-palm, create a 1-inch (slightly) diagonal back subsection, elevate to 90° and point cut. You’ve now established your guideline.
Step #2: Continue with your guideline taking pivoting vertical sections from the front hairline cutting palm-to-palm until you reach your mohawk section on back of the head.
Step #3: Repeat Steps #1 & 2 on the opposite side.
Creating the Wolf Cut [Fringe & Layers]
Step #1: Release the hair on the apex of the head in the horseshoe section. Take a slender section along the front hairline from the center parting to the sideburn area and create a guideline for your fringe.
PRO TIP: an easy way to create a fringe is to cut a tiny piece of hair where you want your fringe to begin and then cut a tiny piece where you want it to end. Cut the remaining hair to match these two points almost as if you were connecting the dots.
Step #2: From a center parting you’re going to blend the fringe in with the layers by dropping out the hair from the apex to the front hairline where the sideburns would be. At a low 45°you’re going to hold your section (and the newly cut fringe) and back cut with the Signature Series Reversible Blending Shear cutting all the hair to the same length using the established fringe as your guideline.
Step #3: Repeat Steps #1 & 2 on the other side of the fringe.
Creating the Wolf Cut [Crown]
Step #1: Release the crown section from the clip. Separate a 1-inch slight diagonal back subsection on one side. Clip the rest of the crown section out of the way.
Step #2: Elevate a tiny piece of hair from the subsection and find another tiny piece of hair that you just cut with the fringe and connect them by outcutting with the Artist Series Slide Cutting Shears closing the shears slowly as you slide through the hair at a 90° and overdirecting to the front of the hairline slightly.
PRO TIP: to create a “scalloped” effect in your layers try to create a curved motion when outcutting. This will help the layers flip out more when styling, giving it the wolf-like appearance.
Step #2: Continue taking slender vertical subsections from your mohawk section and outcut at 90° blending the layers at the crown to the nape. Continue this working until all hair has been cut.
Staying on Trend
As hairstylists, it’s critical to keep our skill set up-to-date with the latest trends. Working with intent and purpose, choosing the right tool for the job, and understanding WHY we’re doing a certain technique help us to achieve better results in less time.
If you’re new to the wolf cut, Jesse recommends leaving a little extra length when cutting the side sections. This gives you some security when connecting the sides to the crown. You can always go back later and remove more hair, but you can’t put hair back once it’s been cut!