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50 of the Best Short Hairstyles and Haircuts for Black Women

Classic waves, springy curls, cute pixies and more — it's all just a little bit of Black girl magic.

short hairstyles for black women
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No matter what's going on in the world, hair doesn't have to be complicated. Enter low-maintenance short hairstyles for Black women, which can really help simplify your life (or at least your morning routine). For the natural girl with a TWA (teeny weeny afro), you can opt to get a low fade, twist-out or comb it into a classic 'fro. For the woman transitioning from relaxed to natural hair, you can rock a short braided hairstyles, hot press curly hair or cornrows. And for the woman with relaxer in her hair, you can sport a pixie cut, bob, fingerwave... the options are endless!

With so many great protective hairstyles to choose from, you may not be sure where to start. So we asked Sabrina Porsche, a Los Angeles-based celebrity hairstylist who has styled the heads of A-listers like Beyoncé, to weigh in on the hottest short hair trends for Black women of any age or face shape to try right now.

gabrielle union in orange top and a shaggy bob, a great short hairstyle for black women
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Shaggy Bob

Actress Gabrielle Union shows off her short and sassy shaggy bob. The tapered back helps shape the face and makes this short hairstyle great for women with oval and heart-shaped faces.

janelle monae in a red blazer with black bow and a slicked down pixie
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Playful Pixie

Update your short black pixie with a single curl like singer Janelle Monáe. Shape the curl by using hair wax or your favorite edge control product.

model maria borges has a blowout twa, which is a great short hairstyle for black women
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Blowout Beauty

Model Maria Borges is known for rocking her teeny weeny afro, and she switched it up with a short blowout look. So chic!

tracee ellis ross has a gold shimmery top and a braided bun which is a great short black hairstyle idea
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Braided Bun

Short looks can be super versatile: Actress Tracee Ellis Ross knows a thing or two about easy, protective styles. Keep your braided bun sleek and edges laid without the mess by using an edge control product like her own Pattern Mini Strong Hold Gel.

SHOP EDGE CONTROL GEL

taraji p henson has a vneck dress statement necklace and a tousled lob which is a short black hairstyle idea
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Tousled Tresses

Actress Taraji P. Henson's short tousled tresses give off a romantic air. The bias cut helps to show off her highlights and draws attention to her collarbone.

another short black hairstyle idea shown by saweetie with a middle part and flipped out ends
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Flip Hairstyle

Try flipping out...your hair that is! This sleek look is coming back and singer Saweetie shows us how it's done. The 70s are trending on runways, so it's no surprise that the "70s big hair flip out will be popular this year," Porsche says.

fulani braids are a short black hairstyle idea as shown on  issa rae with gold embellishments
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Fulani Braids

Actress Issa Rae's glam updo hairstyle has an extra touch of sparkle with gold embellishments. With or without the decorative beads, this Fulani braids look is both regal and fun.

SHOP BEADS

a low cut fade is another short black hairstyle that is showcased on amber rose
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Low Cut Fun

Short cuts and fades are getting a new look in 2022: Trendsetters "are becoming very brave and cutting off their hair and doing multi colors," Porsche shares. Opting for a wig versus cutting your real hair allows you to try out this bold look without committing to a big chop. Take it to the next level like model Amber Rose by having your pro add a fun design with clippers.

a pinned up faux hawk  looks nice on issa rae with a bedazzled high neckline
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Pinned-Up Fro-Hawk

Have some fun with your TWA by pinning or braiding the sides into a cute fro-hawk like Issa Rae's.

taraji p henson in a red top and loose curls is a great idea for short black hairstyle ideas
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Loose Curls

Taraji P. Henson smiles as she shows off her easygoing chin-length bob with loose curls. Don't be afraid to separate the curls for added volume.

samira wiley is wearing a short black hairstyle idea of an updo with tapered sides
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Updo With Tapered Sides

Actress Samira Wiley is showstopping in a tapered updo. Blow out your natural hair and twist it up to create a beautiful updo that allows the focus to be on your face.

tessa thompson is wearing a burnt orange sweater while sporting her curly bob which is another short black hairstyle idea
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Curled Bob

Let your curls loose with this carefree hairstyle seen on actress Tessa Thompson. For more defined ringlets, part strands and twist small sections around a curling iron.

finger waves are a short black hairstyle idea as seen on  danielle brooks who pairs them with an oversized hat
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Finger Waves

Actress Danielle Brooks adds sparkly barrettes to her finger waves for a red carpet-worthy natural hairstyle.

regina king shows that finger coils and cornrows pair together nicely, especially with a pair of statement earrings
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Curls and Cornrows

Pair your curls with intricate cornrows. Actress Regina King mixes it up by tightly braiding one side of her hair and leaving the rest to cascade in beautiful ringlets.

issa rae's bedazzled top and tight curls are another short black hairstyle idea
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Tight Voluminous Curls

Issa Rae's tight curls create a full, fabulous frame for her face. Bangs of the same texture are the perfect finishing touch.

yara shadidhi's short black hairstyle is a natural wash and go with curly bangs
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Making Of The Bang

What goes with a stylish side bang? A smize of course! Actress Yara Shahidi illustrates the look on curly hair and we love it.

amanda stenberg's asymmetrical fro looks dazzling with a plunging neckline shot black hairstyle ideas
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A Different Angle

It's all about the angles! Actress Amandla Stenberg asymmetrically styles her short curly hair for a sophisticated look. Curls are here to stay for naturalistas, Porsche says. "For the curly/natural girls, focusing on the health of the hair will be a big deal this year!" she adds.

meagan good sports a short black hairstyle of side swept  and swooped waves in a red dress with a plunging neckline
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Swooping Waves

Actress Meagan Good served classic Hollywood glamour with cherry red lipstick and a short cut with waves of hair in the front. Her whimsical curls can be achieved by blending in clip-in extensions.

SHOP HAIR EXTENSIONS

amandla stenberg's flipped ends are a short black hairstyle idea with a throwback twist
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Cropped Flip

The flip style also looks great on more cropped cuts, a la actress Amandla Stenberg. To style, "instead of blow-drying hair over a round brush, blow-dry it under to make the curl flip upward," Porsche says. If that is too difficult and you want an easier option, "you can also do this with a barrel curling iron by curling the ends upward," she notes. Finish your flip with a middle part.

another short black hairstyle idea is kelly rowland's blunt bob with a middle part
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Sleek Middle-Parted Bob

Always on the go? Singer Kelly Rowland's sleek bob is a busy girl's dream, as it's so easy to maintain. Keep the part centered for a symmetrical, even look.

janelle monae's short black hairstyle idea is brushed out finger waves with major volume
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Brushed-Out Finger Waves

Janelle Monae's curled bob is all about super soft texture. This classic look can be achieved by twisting your natural hair into bantu knots overnight and letting them loose in the morning.

jada pinkett smith's pinned up volume is the final touch for her gilded open back dress
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Pinned-Up Volume

Rock out like Jada Pinkett Smith with this brown bob that has a mid-section elevated by bobby pins. Smooth out those baby hairs with a dab of hair mousse on a clean toothbrush.

a short black hairstyle idea by maria bborges is a natural twa that she sported down the victoria's secret catwalk
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Naturally Beautiful

Maria Borges made a huge statement by being the first model to rock natural hair during the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show. Achieve this look by keeping your short afro well-moisturized.

give curls major volume as a short black hairstyle ideas like kiersey clemmons picked out spirals
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Raised Curls

If you have a loose curl pattern that grows upwards like actress Kiersey Clemons, try having your stylist cut the sides and back of your hair low for this beautiful look, which shows off your facial features.

finger coils are a short black hairstyle idea as seen on ebonee davis with statement earrings
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Finger Coils

Model Ebonee Davis is all smiles with hair styled in finger coils. Smart tip: The smaller the coils, the longer they last.

a tapered afro is a short black hairstyle idea like the one danai gurira is wearing in an all white ensemble
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Tapered Afro

Danai Gurira knows how to rock a short natural hairstyle either casual or glam, as seen here, and is right on trend. "I think we will see even more people embracing their hair texture and wearing their hair in its natural state!" Porsche says. "More brands than ever are coming out with curly hair lines, so there are many products to choose from to improve overall health and curl definition."

taraji p henson's tapered sides and defined curls are a great short black hairstyle idea
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Closely Cropped Sides

Taraji P. Henson balances the volume up top by keeping the sides shorter. The gorgeous auburn shade also draws the eye upward.

amandla stenberg uses a gold string as a headband for her ringlets
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Moving On Up!

If you are running short on time and still want an elegant look, wear your naturally curly hair up. Instead of using a hair tie, opt for gold string like Amandla Stenberg to add an elevated air.

estelle's headband wig is a short black hairstyle idea that works with any hair type
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Headband Wig

Headband wigs work wonderfully on short hair. "Headband wigs are half wigs that come with headbands attached to them, for those days when you're between styles and need a go-to that's cute, quick and easy," Porsche explains. Installation is simple: "All you do is put your hair in a low ponytail (add baby hair/edges if you prefer) and pop the wig on," she says. The look is versatile, too. "The best part of the headband wig is being able to change out the headband of your choice!" Porsche adds. We love singer Estelle's turban style seen here.

short black hairstyle ideas tessa thompson
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Slicked-Down Waves

Go back in time with this more formal pinned hairstyle worn by Tessa Thompson. Styled like the flapper dancers of the 1920s, slick one side of hair over to the opposite side of the head and secure with pins to achieve the look.

SHOP HAIR PINS

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