The Curly Pixie Cut: Styling and Caring for Short Curly Hair 2024

Curls Unleashed: Embrace the Playful Elegance of the Curly Pixie Cut!

A curly pixie cut refers to a very short pixie hairstyle worn on naturally curly hair. The curls are shaped into a cropped pixie style, often with tighter curls on top and looser curls tapering towards the nape.

Overview of Curly Pixie Cuts

Curly pixie cuts are a great way to showcase beautiful curls in a short, stylish cut. The benefits of a curly pixie include:

  • Shows off natural curl texture
  • Lightweight and easy to manage
  • Feminine short style option
  • Fun, spunky and cute
  • Change of pace from longer curls
  • Endless styling possibilities

The keys to a successful curly pixie include proper layering, strategic curl placement, moisture balance, and styling the curls to enhance their natural movement.

When considering a curly pixie, it’s also important to select the right variation based on your curl type and face shape. Tighter coils may opt for a longer variant while big loose curls can pull off an extremely short pixie.

History of the Curly Pixie Cut

The curly pixie has its roots in the 1920s flapper era but has evolved through the decades into the modern styling we see today.

  • 1920s – The “Eton crop” was a precursor to pixies for fashionable flappers. Tight finger waves added glamour.
  • 1960s – With the rise of short styles like the pixie, curly perms allowed women with straight hair to achieve fashionable volume.
  • 1980s – Stars like Annie Lennox sported permed, cropped curls earning the “gypsy punk” label.
  • 2000s – Natural curls became embraced again, inspiring ultra short curly pixies with tapered napes.
  • 2010s – Curly pixies get more artful and feminine, led by cuts on stars like Viola Davis.

The curly pixie has proven itself more than just a passing trend but an inspiring short style for accentuating natural curls.

Benefits of Curly Pixie Cuts

Cropped curls offer many advantages that make the style a popular choice:

  • Less daily styling – Shorter curls require less time to style than long hair.
  • Lightweight – Removing length cuts down on hair weight and drainage.
  • Showcases texture – The shortness spotlights beautiful curls.
  • Easier to manage – Curls become more defined and frizz-free.
  • Effective for volume – Layers build fullness within curls.
  • Low maintenance – Requires fewer haircuts than long hair.
  • Fun and flirty – The curly pixie gives off a bold, fun-loving vibe.

Best Candidates for Curly Pixies

The curly pixie flatters:

  • Defined curls – Type 2B-3C curls will shine in a cropped cut.
  • Oval faces – The soft face contours pair well with cropped textures.
  • Smaller features – Dainty noses, ears, and eyes suit a precision pixie shape.
  • Strong jawline – A defined jaw balances out a short cropped cut.
  • High cheekbones – Curly textures complement striking cheeks.
  • Long neck – The neck elongation suits a tapered nape.
  • Confident personalities – Cropped cuts demand boldness to pull off.

Not Ideal for Curly Pixies

However, the curly pixie may not be the best option for:

  • Looser waves – Type 2A or 2C waves can appear too soft when cropped very short.
  • Extremely coiled curls – Type 4 coils shrink up severely; opt for longer short cuts.
  • Undefined curls – Pixies show frizz; curls need defined clumping.
  • Delicate features – Soft small features disappear under loads of texture.
  • Round face shape – Curly volume can widen a fuller face.
  • Low density – Thinning or fine hair lacks the substance for short crops.
  • Hairloss – Crops can expose scalp; caution advised.
  • Fragile curls – Overly dry or brittle curls won’t thrive buzzed short.

Types of Curly Pixies

There are a few common curly pixie variants to consider:

Classic Tapered Pixie

  • Sheared close and tapered at neck
  • Short layers cut throughout
  • Longer curls on top for height
  • Highlights facial features

Long Curly Pixie

  • Less dramatic than the classic pixie
  • Extra inch+ length throughout
  • Softens extreme cropping
  • More curl definition

Asymmetrical Curly Pixie

  • One side left slightly longer
  • Angled side-swept fringe
  • Fun edgy vibe
  • Funky frame for the face

Undercut Pixie

  • Back/sides shaved ultra short
  • Disconnected from longer curled top
  • Very cropped and bold
  • Spotlights gorgeous curls

How to Style a Curly Pixie

Styling curly pixies allows fun daily creativity:

Defining Curls

Embrace natural texture using curl creams and gels. Scrunch curls into place piece by piece.

Air Drying

Let curls set naturally into a tousled finish. Tip head forward to set volume at roots.

Finger Styling

Shape curls by gently raking product through with fingers instead of combs.

Blow Drying

Diffuse dry upward from ends to roots while scrunching for enhanced definition.

Pinning Back

Accentuate the pixie shape by pinning back sides for added flair.


Break up solid sections by gently pulling curls apart after setting.


For edgy punk-rock texture, spike up pieces with strong hold gel.


Incorporate feminine flair with printed hairbands embracing the retro vibe.

Caring for Curly Pixies

While low maintenance overall, curly pixies need special care:

  • Gentle products – Opt for moisturizing, curl-friendly shampoos and conditioners.
  • Infrequent washing – Only shampoo 1-2 times per week to prevent drying curls out.
  • Prioritize conditioning – Hydrate and nourish hair with masks and oils.
  • Limit heat styling – Allow curls to air dry naturally when possible.
  • Protect at night – Sleep with a satin bonnet to reduce friction.
  • Check the nape – Watch for tightly coiled shrinking at the pixie nape.
  • Boost moisture – Use leave-in conditioners and styling creams rich in humectants.
  • Enhance definition – Re-twist key pieces and use gels to prevent frizz.
  • Trim regularly – Get a trim every 4-6 weeks to prevent wildness.

Pros and Cons of Curly Pixie

The cropped curl style has advantages but also some drawbacks:


  • Showcases the best curls
  • Light and easy day-to-day
  • Fun feminine short cut
  • Low styling time
  • Change of pace from long curly hair
  • Retains curl pattern integrity
  • Hydrated curls pop


  • Can expose curl thinning
  • Tight coils may shrink severely
  • Can accentuate wider face shape
  • Air exposure risks dryness
  • Regrowth quickly apparent
  • Periodic trimming essential
  • Not suited for straight growth patterns
  • Loose waves may fall flat

Should You Get a Curly Pixie Cut?

How do you know if trying a curly pixie is right for you? Ask yourself:

  • Do I have well-defined curls that would look good cropped short?
  • Does my face shape and features have proportional balance that can complement a short style?
  • Is my curl type resilient and strong enough to withstand dramatic buzzing?
  • Am I willing to embrace the upkeep needs like more frequent trims?
  • Is my job or lifestyle conducive to sporting an edgy, eye-catching short cut?
  • Am I tired of spending time endlessly styling my long curls?
  • Do I want a fun, flirty style change to spice up my look?

If you answered yes, then a curly pixie could be an exciting option worth trying! Consult with an experienced stylist to assess your particular curl type and facial features. An expert cut makes all the difference in achieving a trendy cropped curl look you’ll love sporting.


For curly-haired ladies seeking a lightweight short style that celebrates their gorgeous texture, consider the curly pixie. This cropped curl look flatters heart and oval faces beautifully, removing extra length while allowing curls to take center stage. When cut and cared for properly, curly pixies are fun, sassy and feminine. The possibilities for customizing your cropped curls are endless! Embrace this versatile short style to refresh your look and showcase your unique curly mane.

Curly Pixie
Curly Pixie

Frequently Asked Questions About Curly Pixies

What is the best curl type for a curly pixie cut?

The most defined curl types like type 3B and 3C have the strongest pattern that pops when cut into a pixie shape. Type 4 coils are beautiful but often shrink up very small when cut ultra short. Loose 2A waves can fall flat. Have a stylist assess your curl type.

How do you cut a curly pixie at home?

Cutting a curly pixie yourself is tricky but possible. When hair is wet, cut in sections, point cutting vertically with texturizing shears to remove bulk while maintaining length. Avoid blunt cuts. Remove tiny amounts at a time. Shape, tweaking as curls dry.

How often should you trim a curly pixie?

To keep your curly pixie looking tidy, plan to trim every 4-6 weeks. The short layers and tight curls start to expand rapidly as the hair grows out. Regular trims prevent a frizzy, uncontrolled look. It’s better to take off a little at a time.

What face shape does a curly pixie flatter?

A curly pixie flatters oval and heart shaped faces best. The short sides suit the elegant face contours. Soft rounded shapes can be overwhelmed by the full textures while square jaws may skew overly angular. Curly pixies complement balanced small to average features.

Should thick or thin curly hair get a pixie?

Thick dense curls will suit a cropped pixie shape best, providing the substance needed for volume. Fine, thin curls risk exaggerating patchiness when cut super short. Avoid buzzing the sides and nape too closely. Leave some length to create coverage.

How do you style a curly pixie with a fringe?

Work in curl cream to define texture, then accentuate your fringe by curling the bangs in alternating directions. Twist side fringe pieces away from the face and sweep longer fringe curls to one side. Air dry or diffuse for extra volume. Reshape pieces as needed.

What products work best on curly pixies?

The best curly pixie products offer moisture, definition, and hold like curl creams, gels, and mousses. Always cater to your curl type. Use moisturizing shampoos/conditioners to prevent drying from frequent washing. Avoid heavy oils that can weigh short hair down.

How do you sleep on a curly pixie?

Protect your curly pixie overnight by always sleeping on a satin pillowcase. You can also tie hair up gently with a loose scrunchie on top of your head. If opting to preserve the style, tie a satin scarf around your hair instead. Avoid rough fabrics that cause friction.

Should you wet curly pixies daily?

It’s best not to wet a curly pixie every morning, as too much moisture weakens curls over time. You can gently mist hair with water and reshape style with a curl cream instead. Limit full wetting to a few times per week when shampooing. Embrace next day texture.

What mistakes to avoid with curly pixie?

Avoid these common curly pixie mistakes: not cutting in enough layered texture, choosing an overly blunt cut, incorrect curl placement, letting sides grow out instead of tapering, inadequate moisture, skipping regular trims, using wrong products, overdiffusing, sleeping on cotton pillowcases.

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