The Rachel Haircut You Always Wanted—and How to Get it

The layered '90s cut of your dreams. 

We don’t know about you, but we’ve been feeling that ’90s nostalgia lately, from binge-watching our favorites on Netflix to recreating our favorite styles. The most famous (or infamous?) style of the ’90s in our book has got to be the Rachel haircut. Oh yeah! This ’90s cut that was loved by literally everyone is totally doable in this day and age. And actually, depending on how you style the Rachel haircut, it can look pretty fresh and modern as well. Read on to learn how to get the Rachel haircut, and how to style it.

A Modern Take on The Rachel Haircut

how to get a modern take on the rachel haircut
Curls are all you need to modernize the Rachel. Photo credit: Dvora

Why we still love “the Rachel”

Nostalgia aside, there are a whole lot of reasons to love the Rachel haircut. Mostly, it’s all down to the length and the layers. Worn right around the shoulders, it’s really just a lob haircut with a whole lot of layers thrown in. The layers are so great because they give this cut movement and help to create a smooth shape to your hair.

How To Modernize the Cut

To take this cut from its ’90s roots and make it modern, there are a few things you can do. First up is to let it grow a little longer. The length hitting right above the shoulders really solidifies this as a ’90s cut. To make it much more 2017-friendly, try for a couple inches below your shoulders. Second thing: Either nix the face-framing tendrils of the ’90s, or have them cut much lower, below your chin.

Who looks best in the Rachel?

Here’s the best part about the Rachel haircut: It looks good on almost everyone. To wit: This cut is particularly flattering on oval and long face shapes, but also looks super pretty on square and heart-shaped faces. The only face shape we wouldn’t necessarily recommend getting this cut is the round face shape, as the shorter layers of this cut can overemphasize fullness around your cheeks. Otherwise, have fun!

How to get that 1990s-inspired feel

In the ’90s, the Rachel haircut was all about that pin-straight, piecey look. To get this look, you’ll have to start out by flat-ironing your hair. Prep your dry hair with a little bit of Nexxus New York Salon Care Promend Heat Protecting Mist, and let it dry before you hit the iron. When straightening your hair for this look, you don’t want super-flat, poker-straight results. When you reach around your jawline with the flat iron, start to turn under. This will give that oh-so-Rachel rounded effect to your hair.

When you’ve finished straightening your hair, it’s time to make it look piecey. Use a small dab of S Factor By TIGI Creamy Molding Wax to pinch together small sections of hair. Make sure you get a few defined pieces right by your face for the ultimate Rachel look.

How to style it for today

To instantly modernize the Rachel haircut, just don’t go for straight hair. We actually love the look of this cut with either model off-duty hair, or fun beachy waves. Both take the cut from ’90s to today with just a few turns of a curling wand. When you’ve finished curling or waving your hair, we still like to add in a little bit of that piecey texture. This time, use a cream like Bed Head By TIGI Manipulator Matte Cream for a modern texture.

Need more ’90s throwback looks like the Rachel haircut? Check out our 10 favorite looks from the ’90s