From ceremonial style to TikTok trend, the Hime, or princess cut, is named for the noblewomen who would have originally worn it during the Heian period of Japanese history (c. 794 to 1185). Like a way-more-elegant mullet, it combines two contrasting, stepped lengths: longer hair at the back, with blunt, shorter sections at the front. These short front pieces would have been cut in during the ceremony of Binsogi; a coming of age celebration, marked with a haircut. The combination of contrasting lengths led to a new style, called the Hime.
Aside from a brief resurgence in the 1970s thanks to its popularity with popstar Megumi Asaoka, the Hime cut was mostly reserved to hairdressing competitions in the West – until Prada resurrected the look for their Spring 2021 show. Session stylist Guido created the style for the catwalk, and it has since gone on to become a micro trend – if you can call a tag with 122 million views on TikTok ‘micro’.
The Hime reflects a wider trend for dramatic cuts that has emerged post-lockdown. After a year indoors with no haircuts, this offers a way to maintain length but still do something different – plus, it’s fun, fresh and feels way more exciting than your usual trim.