For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Aug 23 2016
by Alyssa Lam

16 Ways to Change Up Your Hair for the New School Year

By Alyssa Lam - Aug 23 2016

School is starting soon, if not already underway for many college students, and as a freshman, the transition into the college life can be a bit overwhelming. But look at it like this: the new school year calls for a new you! At this point in our lives, more and more people are beginning to stray away from their usual look. College is where you will meet tons of brand new faces - what better way to make a great first impression than with a change? Here are some of the hottest new hair trends sweeping the college scene. Check them out and maybe even call up the hair salon and book your appointment today!


1. Layers

For a subtler change to update your hair, try a few light layers to your currently cut-across hair. This will give hair textures that lack a little volume that extra bounciness to it. This look works well on all hair lengths, especially if you have long hair and don’t wish to chop it off just yet. For a softer look, ask for a U-shape layered look in the back. And if you’re feeling a bit more daring, try a sharper V-shape. The only downside is that braiding hair might be a bit tougher, but if you’re into curling your hair, this one is a keeper!

2. Bangs

If you grew up around the same time as any incoming freshmen, then you know that bangs remind you of childhood and that dreaded boyish look that covered your forehead all the way down to your eyelashes. But forget about that today’s bangs can make all of the difference! There are several styles out there that will flatter and frame your face perfectly, you just have to figure out which one is right for you. For a rounder face, try side bangs. For a longer face, try cut-across bangs. And for a square shape or a defined jawline, try loose, wispy, soft bangs to compliment the bold lines. No matter what you choose, bangs provide an often sweet yet sophisticated appearance fun for everyday casual occasions and your next internship interview.

@ashleyswagnerxo on Instagram

3. Side Part

For the girl who is not quite ready for too much change, a great way to update your look slightly is to part your hair to the side if it isn’t already. This can be done without even stepping foot into a salon. Simply divide a section of your hair over more to one side when your hair is wet and let it dry in that fashion. While this doesn’t seem like much, you’ll be surprised how modern and stylish it looks.

4. Lob/Bob

Now approaching shorter lengths, a new trend that has taken over the celebrity hair scene are long bobs or, in short, “lobs." A super versatile hair length, both lobs and even shorter bobs can be seen just about everywhere. With the busy school year coming up, a low maintenance hair cut is extremely desired and having shorter hair makes it easier to deal with. Short towards the back, and long towards the front, this style, when executed correctly, can elongate a round face.

@alibbeckman on Instagram

5. Pixie Cut/Short

For the girl ready to make that extreme change, pixie cuts are now in style as well, especially for the young adult crowd. Low maintenance and extremely fashion forward, today’s modern cuts are more desirable than ever. It takes a bold and outgoing person to really rock this look, so if you think this is really your style, by all means take a chance! You’ll be pleasantly surprised.


6. Pompadour

Possibly one of the most popular trends regarding men’s hairstyles, the pompadour is sure to catch anyone’s eyes. More and more celebrities and models are jumping on the bandwagon. This look is definitely more tapered on the side and polished on top, providing a cut that is casual yet sleek at the same time.

7. Ivy League

One of the most classic cuts for young men entering college is coincidentally known as the “Ivy League." A hairstyle rocked by students since the early 1900s, it is clear that this look has and will probably never go out of style. Fit for the sweet yet athletic all-around type of guy, the “Ivy League” is a perfect way to display some charm.

8. Cropped and Curly

For the guy with curly hair, there is no doubt that it requires a bit of work to keep up. Lucky for you, this recent hair trend is made for people like you! By cutting it shorter on the sides and curlier on top, you not only cut down time to fix it up in the morning but modernize it completely. This will let you keep the curls you have without having so much to work with.

9. Man Bun/Ponytail

This article would be amiss if the man bun and ponytail were not mentioned. A trend that consistently grew these past couple years is making its way into the college scene as well. For guys with long hair who don’t want to chop it off just yet, learning to tie it back can update your look, clean it up from a rock band look to manly guy, and uncover the face that has been hiding behind those locks. This look has become more socially acceptable even in more professional settings as well. So keep on doing you, and don’t worry about a thing! Especially for guys with facial hair, the well-kept beard and man bun are often seen paired together for a rough outdoorsy appearance.

10. Tapered/Side Part

Similar to the pompadour, the tapered side part look is also a popular style these days. While shorter on the side like the pompadour, this cut has the hair on top swept over a bit, turning the pompadour look into a more casual, laid-back, yet still polished look.



11. Warmer Fall Tones

Perfect for the fall season, colors like burgundy and auburn, more reddish hues are all the rage.

12. Go Darker

Currently a blonde or light brunette? Colder weather is the perfect time to go darker. This will give you a sultrier look as the weather calls for more cozy nights in.

13. Metallic/Pastel

Whether in highlights or your whole head of hair, these shiny metallic and pastel colors are in right now and are especially friendly for the people who want to go for something more drastic ad colorful. By going with these colors, outfits can complement them easier than a brighter shade. They appear to many as the hair colors of the future, so get a head start today on this fashion-forward look.

14. Just the Top

While this has not truly picked up just yet with the trends, it is all over Pinterest. Perfect for guys and girls with pixie cuts, this gives a dramatic look to an already sleek and eye-catching cut by creating a contrast between the top portion and lower portion of hair.

15. Highlights vs. Lowlights

While highlights use colors lighter than your natural/current hair color, lowlights do the opposite with darker shades. By combining both, it adds the appearance of movement and body to hair. Nowadays you will see different styles of highlights and lowlights as well with a technique known as balyage or ombre hair that allows a fading of colors from root to tip. It is suggested that you consult your hair stylist to tell you what will look best for you specifically to achieve the best results.

16. You do you!

And lastly for both the guys and gals, you can even just embrace your natural hair texture! Maybe you were the secret curly hair person who constantly kept straightening their bouncy strands. Or perhaps it was the opposite - you curled your hair every day. Whatever the case may be, now that you’ve escaped the treacherous and judgmental halls of high school, college is the time to be true to yourself and figure out your identity. Do this by letting go of what your routine is and simply loving your hair the way it was supposed to be, or is currently. Not only will this make you feel better about yourself but will prevent hair damage in the long run. And if braids are your thing, by all means feel free to continue or try other braided hairstyles. If you wear a head-covering, that is a whole style on its own that you should embrace. No matter what, your hair is an expression of who you are, whether you want to show the world how daring you are or where your family came from. When picking a style, go for what calls to you, no matter what other people may think.
@muslimahapparelthings on Instagram
@amazingcurls on Instagram

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Alyssa Lam - Northeastern University

Alyssa Lam is a freshman at Northeastern University and one of Fresh U Northeastern's Junior Editor-in-Chiefs. She is undeclared; however she has interests in following a pre-medical track. In her free time, Alyssa likes to cook, work out, draw, write, hang out with friends, explore, and try new things. She prides herself on the fact she is short yet fierce. Find her on Instagram @lyssalam6.

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