Break RoomScrubs

Best haircuts and styles for a long shift


Image: Alma G

Let’s talk about one of the top pet peeves of a nurse’s style: After Work Hair. Many of you stuff it in and out of a cap throughout the day, you pull it back to get it out of your face, you clip it off your eyes, and then, at the end of your shift, you’re stuck with a ‘do you wouldn’t sport to a monster truck rally, let alone out on the town.

I understand that the Intensive Care floor isn’t a catwalk, but there are simple things you can do to manage your hair and keep it stylish, especially if you have after-work engagements.

While I’m sure many of you can’t bear to part with your long locks, there has never been a better time to go short. Victoria, Katie, Keira, Rihanna—they’re all rocking variations of the short look, and it’s sexier than ever.

If you’re brave enough to chop it off, I recommend a short to medium razor cut. A razor cut is one of the most effective modern methods to create texture and have a soft, deconstructed finish rather than the bluntness that’s caused by scissors.

This style is the easiest to maintain and can be worn in a variety of ways. However, it works best with fine to medium hair. At the end of the day, it will take about five seconds in front of the mirror to tousle it up, and you’re ready to go!

For thicker or curly hair, a shorter shag or pixie cut works best, with longer layers in the front, shorter in the back. It’s surprisingly easy to maintain with mousse or gel, and should be dried with a round brush.

Here are three great ways to keep your locks neat and stylish.

1. Play with parts: Whether you’re wearing your hair down or pulling it back into the quintessential bun, why not liven it up a bit? You can switch up your style simply by changing your part.

Part it down the middle on either side or create a zigzag. Run a quarter-size (or more, depending on texture) dollop of anti-frizz gel through hair. Use a small bobby pin to create a defined part.

If you’re creating a bun, sleek hair back into a ponytail. Twist the tail in one or two sections (depending on length/volume of hair). Guide the twist into a coil around the ponytail holder and secure with a bobby pin. If you have thicker hair, you may want to secure the tail at numerous points as you twist. Spritz with hairspray. At the end of your shift, you can easily transform this look into evening chic by lowering the ponytail to the nape of your neck and re-securing the bun.

2. Be a braided beauty: Run a curl-defining mousse through your hair. Separate hair into equal parts (the more parts, the tighter the wave), braid and secure with a ponytail holder. Gather braids into a long ponytail or bun. When you’re ready to head out, you can remove the braids for a natural-looking, sexy wave.

3. Go for the simple ponytail: Don’t underestimate the allure of a pretty ponytail. Keep it neat with a finishing cream for a no-fuss style.

No matter your hair texture or length, you can find your perfect cut and style, and have fun doing it. All of these looks take mere minutes to achieve and are as cute as they are practical.

Alma G
As the owner of one of New York City’s top salons, Alma G. often shares her favorite beauty secrets with friends and clients including Rosario Dawson, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Rachel Roy and Keri Russell. Russell even coined the phrase “Alma-tized” when first describing Alma’s innovative approach to creating her new ’do. The Alma Salon is at 38 E. 21st Street, New York, (212) 353-0600,

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