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Hair Styling | Shag Hairstyles

Graduated Bob: Discover More about This Stylish Cut

Graduated bob hairstyles come in many variations. The hair can be cut in a layered or stepped way or it can be extremely thinned out. These bobs can give bounce to curls and add the appearance of volume to straight hair. We’ll discuss a few styling tips regarding this fashionable and versatile hairstyle.


Red-haired woman touching her bob

A graduated bob suits any kind of hair so what are you waiting for?

You may call it a shag haircut or a graduated bob (sometimes even a stepped or stacked haircut), but one thing’s for sure: this is a stunning look. Whatever you call it, graduated haircuts work virtually for every hair quality, length, or hair structure. However, you must pay attention to some details. If you have very fine hair, you should be careful not to thin out the ends too much. In a good haircut, your stylist must create optically pleasing transitions between the different lengths of hair. Otherwise, the hairstyle will quickly look too lean.

What is a graduated bob?

Brunette woman with graduated bob and headphones

A characteristic of the graduated bob is that it's longer at the front and shorter at the back

There are many types of bob hairstyles, so let’s get into what the graduated bob hairstyle is exactly. One of the most common bobs out there, this cut is best described as having stacked layers at the back of your hair. These layers are usually curved, instead of being at a sharp angle. The layers will ultimately get longer toward the front of the hair.

Graduated bob hairstyle: Pay attention to the hair structure

Hairdressers will recommend that fine hair not be cut into a long graduated bob that goes beyond your shoulders. This is because the ends of your hair would look too thin. However, shorter bobs will end up adding volume. Layers reduce the weight of your hair and so longer graduated bobs are ideal for thick hair, whereas shorter versions may end up looking a bit too poufy.


Limp curls will have far more spring with a graduated bob. As always, the transitions from layer to layer should be smooth and the top layer should not be too short so as to avoid the dreaded poodle look.

Make your graduated bob hairstyle even better

Red-haired woman with graduated bob

The way you blow-dry your hair can make a lot of difference to how the bob sits

To make this haircut really pop, there are a few things you can do to your new look to really make a statement.


  • Hair highlights or streaks emphasize the look of a graduated bob or stepped haircut. The hairstyle looks especially beautiful when the hair is streaked in two or three different shades.
  • Hairstyles based on graduated cuts can look a little disorganized if not styled correctly! Work hair mousse, gel, or wax through dry hair to emphasize the stepped or layered nature of the haircut.
  • It is usually unnecessary to style graduated bob hairstyles for short and medium-length hair using a round brush. Instead, a flat paddle brush ideally suits this purpose. Blow-dry your hair against the grain and then first to one side and then to the other. Finally, you should blow-dry your hair to the front and then to the back. Using this method, the hair gains loads of volume and shine while staying smooth and straight.
  • If you have thicker hair, you should ask your hairstylist about the point cut technique. With this method, larger gaps are cut into strands of hair using ridged scissors. This creates overall softer contours and the haircut appears less compact.