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The Monica vs. The Rachel: A TikTok Battle of the Haircuts

When it comes to iconic haircuts, we all know “The Rachel,” but what about “The Monica?” With Y2K style trends reigning supreme for the summer, and ’90s looks still making the rounds, many have been turning to the ever-popular bixie that was so huge in the ’90s. One of the biggest bixie icons of the time was Monica Gellar from the television show, Friends. Monica (played by Courtney Cox) wore a short bixie for much of the earlier seasons, alongside her hairspirational castmate, Jennifer Anniston (who played Rachel Green).

We spoke to expert hairstylist Beth Nuccio of Studio.B about The Monica vs. The Rachel haircut, including the key differences between the two and which one may be right for you.

Side-by-side comparison of The Monica vs The Rachel haircut | Mane Addicts
(Image Source: Getty / Ron Davis / Jim Smeal)

About the Expert

Beth Nuccio is an expert hair colorist and hairstylist who owns the salon Studio.B in Chicago, Illinois.

What Is “The Monica?”

The Monica chop has been trending all over TikTok, but what is it exactly? Nuccio points out that, “the ‘Monica’ is more of a bixie (bob/pixie) style chop that is more textured, tousled, and shaggy around the nape. It still has length on top to tuck the hair behind the ears if need be.”

Countless stars in the mid-90s to the early aughts rocked this same style, and are again rocking it now. Think Drew Barrymore, Winona Ryder, and Meg Ryan to name a few. As shorter styles become more popular and are trending all over TikTok, the ’90s bixie (or Monica) is nearly surpassing the Rachel in popularity.

What Is “The Rachel?”

“The Rachel haircut is very round. Pay attention to the rounded-out layers and the extremely defined face framing,” says Nuccio. The Rachel haircut is not only defined by its sharp face framing but its volume and pieceyness throughout the layers and crown.

As time has marched on, there is a more modernized version of the Rachel haircut bubbling to the surface. This updated take still plays on the piecey layers and plethora of face-framing, but rather than rounding in towards the face, it is typically styled with a more outward flick, away from the face.

The Monica vs. The Rachel Haircut

“The key differences to remember between the Monica and the Rachel are the length and the direction. The Rachel haircut typically hits at the shoulder and contours and slims the face due to the tapered framing. The Monica haircut is a shorter, textured crop that sits away from the face and is more defined at the top and nape of the neck, thus opening the face more,” says Nuccio.

With Nuccio’s advice in mind, be sure to pay attention to your face shape and how you like it shown before committing to one of these cuts. Those who prefer to slim their cheeks or hide their forehead will benefit from the Rachel, whereas those who like to see their features on display may appreciate the Monica more. Texturally, either cut can be modified to work with almost any texture of hair. Whether you’re a Monica or a Rachel, regularly scheduled trims will keep both cuts stylish and easy to wear.

Ready to go full Monica? HERE are six more celebs giving us big bixie energy!

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