The mental image of a Bachelor contestant comes easily: They’re usually thin, cis, and classically “pretty” women. The dolphin-related career is optional, but the slinky gowns are basically guaranteed. Trends come and go, but not all that much has changed in Bachelor style since it began all the way back in 2002. That’s even truer when it comes to the contestants’ hair. Year after year, most women on the show opt for long, shiny, and smooth barrel-curled waves. It’s a genre stereotype at this point, but for the first time ever, the show’s about to feature someone with an all-new beauty look. Short hair is coming to The Bachelor.
Out of context, that might not seem totally groundbreaking — and The Bachelor welcoming a white woman with a pixie cut is just a small step toward representing all different kinds of people and beauty onscreen. But with 22 — 22 — seasons of women with long hair or lobs on the show, contestant Bekah Martinez is bringing a different kind of beauty to the rose ceremony. Last year, only three of the 28 contestants had hair above their shoulders. Martinez has the shortest hair of anyone on the show, ever — meaning that we’re seeing history in the making (and that society’s expectation for “feminine” hair is finally somewhat loosening up).
It hasn’t gone unnoticed on social media, where people have major opinions on Martinez’s look. The Internet is the Internet, so there’s always some naysayers, but commenters have taken over Martinez’s Instagram with praise for her short waves. “Just based on your headshots alone, you seem to be a gorgeous individual floating in a sea of clones. Awesome hairstyle!” wrote one commenter. “Yes, girl. Rocking the pixie cut!” wrote another.
Part of the reason “TV hair” feels so homogenized is because producers often request those same long waves — both for reality shows and scripted characters. As Cynthia Vanis, a hair department head for film and television, told Racked, “It’s so much more manageable with shooting. Straight hair moves a lot, and if one piece is out of place, you can totally tell. You can cheat easier when there’s more movement within the hair” (like the kind that comes with long waves).
Still, more representations of beauty on a mainstream TV series like The Bachelor make all the difference; the more we see women breaking the mold, the more the norm will widen. And the stats back up that this is what we all want. On Pinterest, searches for pixies were up 120 percent this year. They’re all over in real life, and they’re definitely on the rise in Hollywood too. To name just a few, Cara Delevingne, Zoë Kravitz, Kate Hudson, Katy Perry, and Katie Holmes all got some form of pixie this year — and all look seriously incredible.
We can count Martinez’s hair into that fold now, but we’ll be waiting with bated breath until some natural curls, ‘fros, and buzz cuts are given a rose. All we know is, if we don’t start seeing them, we’re happy to help with casting.
Short hair, don’t care:
Now, check out some of our favorite pixie cuts: