A Definitive Guide to Mullets, Shullets, Wolf Cuts, and More

Written by Ashley Mishler

Haircut trends come and go, but this one seems to keep evolving. What started as a shag is now a “shullet.” And to be quite honest, it can be hard to tell the difference. Mane Addicts is here to give you the low down on the difference between a mullet, shullet, wolf cut, and everything in between in our shag guide below!

The Shag

Oh, the shag? She’s been around. The classic ’70s-inspired ‘do is still very on trend and has been for quite some time. Her popularity is cyclical. Born in the ’70s, resurfaced in the ’90s, and resurrected once more for the late twenty-teens. The shag is an easily identifiable haircut, characterized by a multitude of layers at varying lengths, lots of volume, and a purposeful messiness. The key to a perfect shag? Perfect fringe. Many who try out a shag haircut will opt for a face-framing fringe or super blended curtain bang. Either way, the shape of the fringe is what helps pull this cut together, making it stand out as more than just a lot of layering. The shag also maintains a lot of fullness around the face, contrary to its counterparts, along with a squared and even shape within its layers.

The Mullet

The mullet, for all intents and purposes, is a more extreme shag. “Business in the front, party in the back,” super ’80s, but also early ’90s. The mullet is characterized but a cascade of layers in the back of the head, while keeping it short and tight around the ears. Fringe is also typically involved, but it doesn’t have to be. As long as your cut meets the “short in the front, long in the back” criteria, you have a mullet.

The Wolf Cut

Here is where things can get confusing. The wolf cut doesn’t have an exact definition, but it is some combination of a shag and a round layered haircut. By round, we mean that the layering creates a rounded effect as they cascade from the front to the back of the hair. A wolf cut will focus much of its texture and layering around the face, hugging the cheeks and neck. Think of how a wolf has shorter hair around its ears and eyes and longer, thicker hair as you get into the neck area. There you have the inspiration for this cut. In reality, there isn’t much difference between this chop and a shag, it’s all in how the stylist interprets it.

The Shullet

To put this in the simplest terms, a shullet is an extreme shag. This haircut trend is the meeting point between a mullet and a shag. The shullet maintains the volume, texture, and fringe of a shag, but isn’t afraid to go super short around the face and chop things up a bit. Think of this one as the rock ‘n’ roll, Joan Jett-inspired ‘do that many are donning these days. In part, expertly cut, but also insanely easy to style as the goal is to literally get as messy and tousled as possible. Bedhead lends itself to this look. The key to the perfect shullet? Face-hugging fringe and framing, blended all the way down.

Are shullets and shags not your thing? Why not try an asymmetrical cut! HERE’s the low down on uneven haircuts trending and totally being a thing.