How to Grow a Pixie into a Bob When You Have Cowlicks

Crop your nape and start growing.
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Crop your nape and start growing.
How to grow a pixie into a bob when you have cowlicks

Welcome to our Ask Beautyeditor column, where our experts answer your hair, skin and makeup questions. To request an online hair consultation from celebrity hairstylist Bill Angst:

  • Email with “Bill Angst Hair Consultation” in the subject line.
  • Include at least TWO well-lit, hi-res photos of you (one close-up, one full-body).
  • Briefly describe your hair texture, colour and main hair challenges.

Please note: All photos will be published.

Q: Hello Bill! I would like to grow out my hair and am looking for a funky, easy style that would allow me to continue to grow.

Hair consultation - Cristie (

Cristie wants to grow out her pixie cut.

I've had a pixie of some sort for about two years now. I started to grow it out recently, and had it in a little bob. It was cute for a minute, but then it felt like a helmet. I went to a new hairstylist and she was going to "texturize" my hair (which I like—I've had messy, choppy hair for years), but instead started randomly slicing into my hair with no rhyme or reason. 

So now, I'm back to a pixie, but a very bad one. There is no underlying shape to my hair. It's just an awful choppy lump that doesn't do much of anything. One side has longer pieces than the same spot on the other side. The back, near the nape of my neck, looks awful. 

Hair consultation - Cristie

Cristie's current cut is choppy, with uneven sides.

With product, I can make it look okay at best. I sometimes wear it messy, and sometimes sleek and tucked behind my ears. I don't blow-dry or like to take a lot of time on my hair.

The texture is fine-ish, but I have a lot of hair, so it feels pretty thick. It is mostly straight, but as it grows longer (and if it's cut in the right layered way), I do get waves. I have four pretty big cowlicks: two at the nape and sides of my neck, and the other two on either side of my forehead.

Hair consultation - Cristie

Cristie has ash-toned hair that she dyes reddish brown.

The colour is dark ashy brown, but I colour my own hair—usually warm reddish browns, and then I play with bits of colour in the bangs. I like it lighter around my face.

Thank you for the consideration! — Cristie

A: Cristie, thank you for your consultation request.

I always find the bangs and crown take the longest to grow, so leave these bits alone.

You already have long side bits, so I would leave them to grow as well.

The nape grows the fastest, so this is where you can have fun during the growing process. Until you acquire length in the crown and bangs, I would keep this area cropped close to your head. You have a great jawline for cropping the nape.

Short haircut with cropped nape

Short haircut with cropped nape.

I agree with you that warming up your colour is a great idea for you.

Moving toward a golden colour, rather than red, would be a better approach. This will make your eyes stand out and will suit your complexion way better.

This is the colour that I am talking about:

Short golden brown hair

Short golden brown hair.

Also this shape is the direction I see for your mid-length cut.

Here is the next length, still growing out the layers:

Short layered bob haircut

Short layered bob haircut.

Then onto the bob. Here is a great example of working with your cowlicks at this length:

Lara Bingle, Cotton On event, 2014

Lara Bingle at a 2014 Cotton On event.

From here keep growing and growing if you still want long hair.

Another length using cowlicks:

Ashley Greene, Alice and Olivia Spring 2010 show, 2009

Ashley Greene at the Alice + Olivia Spring 2010 show.

And another perfect example of finding beauty in cowlicks:

Lindsay Lohan, ESPN The Magazine Next Big Weekend Super Bowl party, 2009

Lindsay Lohan at ESPN The Magazine's Next Big Weekend Super Bowl party in 2009.

If, for some reason, you decide to cut bangs—which I don't recommend for cowlicks—you must be creative in the way you part the hair in order for it to work.

Bangs with cowlicks

Bangs with cowlicks.

I hope this finds you well and answers your questions.

PS: No bangs!


Bill Angst is one of Canada’s top celebrity hairstylists and the owner of Angst Salon at 240 Queen Street East in Toronto. Call 416-360-5942 to book an appointment.