From Jane Fonda’s fist-raised mugshot to Joan Jett’s DIY razor cut, the shag has always been a cool-girl cut. Perfect for enhancing natural movement, the super-choppy, ultra-layered shag is always a flattering option and has plenty of potential for personalisation – whether worn as essentially a mullet that you just can’t quite bring yourself to admit to, or given a softer shape with less dramatic contrast in lengths.
New York’s Paul McGregor is the hairdresser credited with creating the cut, from his ultra-cool salon on St Marks Place, where he chopped into Jane Fonda’s hair ahead of her role in 1971’s Klute. Throughout the 70s and 80s, the style went on to be worn by men and women alike – think Bowie and Rod Stewart for rock ’n’ roll adoptees. By the 90s, softer takes on the ultra-layered style became popular, with Meg Ryan and Jennifer Aniston both wearing variations on the shag.
Today it’s having an Instagram moment but it’s also symptomatic of a wider trend for working with natural texture and creating bespoke cuts that fall into place with minimal styling or products required.