It’s no news that the moon has a major influence on things here on earth, affecting everything from the ocean’s tides to the growing patterns of certain types of plants. And, of course, the moon has also been said to affect human beings, with some of us looking to it for spiritual guidance, even planning rituals around its different phases. Moreover, some people think that the lunar calendar even influences things like our hair by having an impact on how quickly and strong it grows.
Sure, this might just be superstition, but plenty of people still swear by it, and the Farmer’s Almanac even lists the best dates to get a haircut to increase hair growth. And, superstition or not, it kind of makes sense: The moon affects so many other elements of nature, so why not us too?
We turned to hairdresser, salon owner, and creator of Reverie hair products Garrett Markenson for his opinion on the matter. While he may not be well versed on the moon and its phases, he does think of lunar haircut planning as a new option for people looking to improve the quality of their hair.
“Most are coming from a place where people are struggling to have their hair grow out, or struggling to have thicker hair, or maybe their hair is just fully damaged,” he says. “If you’re willing to try every product your hairdresser suggests, or even at-home remedies like coconut or olive oil, why not try aligning your hair cut with a particular phase of the moon? It can be looked at as another option or alternative to improve the overall appearance of your hair.”
With that being said, we did some research on this theory to see what the overall suggestions were for each phase of the moon, and then turned to artist, author, and moon expert extraordinaire Sarah Gottesdiener to get some of her advice.
Click through the gallery below to read about each phase, and see the current lunar calendar here.
Photography by Matthew Kazarian
Makeup by Javier Mena
Hair by Garrett Markenson
Hair Color by Lana Burke
Models: Erika Fermina, Michaela Jane McEttrick
The new moon is the phase during which the moon is positioned between the earth and the sun, signifying the beginning of a new cycle. During this time, the illuminated half of the moon faces away from the earth, making it virtually invisible in our night sky.
During this phase, it's said that the hair is weakened, and the greatest amount of hair loss occurs, therefore going for a major game-changing haircut may not be the best idea. Markenson suggests reaching for a treatment, such as Reverie’s Milk, an anti-frizz leave-in treatment, or Ever, a recovery hair oil.
However, Gottesdiener feels that this part of the moon phase is a great time to try a new thing. If you’re going to avoid a major cut, you can still try for a style that’s refreshing or even a new color. She suggests taking this time to think about your intentions for the next month, “making a point in having your hair, makeup, and accessories align with that.”
First Quarter (Waxing Moon)
The waxing moon is the period between the new and the full moon when the moon appears to be growing larger and more illuminated each night until it reaches the full phase.
If you’re looking to have your hair grow faster, it has been said this is the ideal time to get a trim. Ridding yourself of dead, split ends has been proven to help hair grow at a quicker rate, just like ridding plants of dead branches and twigs improves the rate at which they grow.
Gottesdiener also feels that this is a great time for owning your hair. “This is a great time for getting out there and building confidence around your style,” she says.
So flaunt what you got (but please, get rid of those split ends).
Cutting your hair during a full moon can encourage it to grow with more health, abundance, and strength, so those with damaged and brittle hair may want to consider a cut during this phase of the moon cycle.
However, Gottesdiener warns against trying a brand-new, or shocking, style during this time, as the full moon can cause you to be more emotional and reactionary. We all know what it’s like to get a bad haircut, but imagine that intensified—so be aware, and make sure you go to a stylist you trust, who truly knows your hair and your taste.
If you’re not looking for a drastic change, Gottesdiener recommends taking the time to celebrate what you have. “Treat yourself kindly, appreciate what is working with your style, and ask to receive any messages,” she says. Markenson agrees, “It’s like everything is coming full circle. Celebrating that you’re beautiful, your hair is beautiful, and so on. It’s an influential time.”
Last Quarter (Waning Moon)
The last quarter is, you guessed it, the last quarter of the cycle where the illuminated portion of the moon shrinks each night until completely disappearing, marking a new moon (and the next cycle).
It has been said that cutting your hair during this time causes the hair to grow slower, so if you’re looking to go for something new and drastic, cutting your tresses during this time will help keep the cut looking fresh for a longer time.
Markenson and Gottesdiener both agree that the last quarter of the moon, the waning moon, is the best time to really “let go” and go for a serious cut. “Get rid of tons of dead weight during this time,” says Gottesdiener. She also suggests taking extra special care of your hair during this time, such as deep conditioning treatments and hair masks.