The gaze is rooted in the challenge, independence and autonomy of women.
Zoë Kravitz can pull off just about any hairstyle. And over the years, she’s changed her look enough times to prove it. The actor tried a faded blonde bob, a top cut, braids, and in The Batmanshe takes the pixie out of her beauty repertoire again.
As Catwoman (played by Kravitz), Selina Kyle’s ability to alter her personality is seen in the different hairstyles she chooses. If she’s trying to trick someone or play a role, Kyle selects one of her many wigs that vary in color and length. But when she’s most genuine, the sprite comes out to play.
It’s a versatile fit that represents the character’s personal freedom. And in the real world, more and more celebrities (like Alexa Demie and Florence Pugh) are choosing to cut their locks. Why? One of the reasons is the history of the pixie cut as a symbol of female individuality and autonomy.
The social construction that men should have long hair and women should have short hair dates back to antiquity. Greek and Roman times (and is even mentioned in biblical passages). Fast forward to the 1920s, and prominent female figures like Manhattan artist Clara Tice, aka “Queen of Greenwich Village”, were credited for wear the blunt cut when it was not fashionable to do so.
Men Pushed Back On The Trend, Explained Racked journalist Rebecca Jennings. In fact, in 1920, author F. Scott Fitzgerald published a short story titled Bernice cuts her hair, a cautionary tale about a girl who cuts her hair in a bob and then becomes a social outcast because of it.
But that hasn’t stopped short hair from having its heyday. Throughout the 1920s it was embraced as a subversive style, thanks in part to flappers and their affinity for flashy fashion. The rise of the pixie cut is thus part of the broader movement of women fighting for independence.
One of the most notable figures associated with the controversial look is Audrey Hepburn. Although widely regarded today as a timeless beauty queen, Hepburn was criticized during her rise to fame in the 1950s for having a “boyish” figure and short hair. In his 1953 film roman holidays, Hepburn’s character cuts his hair to mark a new era of independence. hair historian Rachael Gibson said vogue that Hepburn’s haircut in this film sent the style into the mainstream. And over the decades, the pixie has continued to evolve.
In the 1960s, famed hairstylist Vidal Sassoon conceptualized the blunt bob, which was associated with female hairstyles. sense of personal freedom. Among her clients were sixties fashion icon Twiggy and actress Mia Farrow. Farrow wore it in Rosemary’s baby, a horror about a woman going through a paranormal pregnancy. Throughout the film, Rosemary (Farrow) desperately tries to take control of her own life despite the interference of outside forces. She chops her hair into a famous pixie cut in a small act of defiance.
In the 1990s, the pixie cut saw another push. Seen on stars like Winona Ryder, Linda Evangelista, Jada Pinkett Smith and Halle Berry (who played Catwoman in 2004), the style continued into the early 2000s as a marker of originality.
Although more socially acceptable today, the pixie cut remains a marker of individuality. It’s no wonder this is Catwoman’s favorite look, a figure known for reclaiming traditional notions of femininity and femininity. With women’s self-esteem often tied to our hair, there’s a cathartic release to being able to lose that weight, physically and mentally. That’s why the pixie cut – and its implications for personal power – will forever be the ultimate statement-making hairstyle.