View Poll Results: How "long" is long hair on a woman?
Shoulder length 31 27.68%
Armpit length 54 48.21%
Mid back 19 16.96%
Waist length 8 7.14%
Voters: 112. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:15 PM
Warm blood is offline
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What is considered long hair on women?


I always assumed that shoulder length was the universal baseline for long hair, but after hanging out in hair care forums it seems that a lot of people think hair isn't long until it reaches at least mid-back. What say you, dopers?
  #2  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:25 PM
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Beyond a certain length (waist or butt length) it falls off, right? I'll go with waist length.
  #3  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:32 PM
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I think you left out some options. Shoulder length is too short to qualify as long but anything longer than that qualifies in my opinion. Mid-back is getting into the "really long" category. Butt length is Rapunzel territory.
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:36 PM
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I voted waist length ... my first wife has ankle length hair ... a friend of hers was dragging hair ...
  #5  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:40 PM
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Anything from the armpit to June-Carter-Early-Cher-Long
  #6  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:42 PM
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I always thought it was past the shoulder blades, only to be greeted with horror by a stylist when I walked in. I had told her that my hair wasn't that long. At least to get it styled, if it's to your shoulders, then it's long.
  #7  
Old 07-10-2017, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
I think you left out some options. Shoulder length is too short to qualify as long but anything longer than that qualifies in my opinion. Mid-back is getting into the "really long" category. Butt length is Rapunzel territory.
I included armpit length, which is in between shoulder and mid back.


So apart from voting, no one's gonna discuss why our definition of long differs so much?
  #8  
Old 07-10-2017, 09:06 PM
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If we're discussing "long" as solely in a "short" vs "long" binomial choice, then I'd say shoulders, because I really only use "short" for those styles which don't reach to the shoulders. But if we're getting more detailed than I could be talked into a lower definition.
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Old 07-11-2017, 12:18 AM
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Shoulder length seems to be medium to me. At least to the armpit if not below is where I would place it.
  #10  
Old 07-11-2017, 12:34 AM
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Isn't there such a thing as "medium length"? Google "medium length hairstyles". That would be just above to just below shoulder length.

In my book, it isn't really long until your stylist begs you not to have her cut it because it's so beautiful.

(I cut it anyway) (more than once)
  #11  
Old 07-11-2017, 12:52 AM
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At the place where I get my hair cut, "long" is shoulder length, "extra long" is mid-back, and "ultra long" is waist or longer. This enables them to charge more, but they're worth it (although I don't know why it's harder to lop a couple inches off my waist-length hair than it would be if my hair was shoulder length).
  #12  
Old 07-11-2017, 01:09 AM
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My first thought, before I saw the options, was shoulder blade length, so I chose armpit as that was closest. Just hitting shoulders is definitely not long hair. It's not really short either, I would call it medium length.
  #13  
Old 07-11-2017, 01:16 AM
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I don't see why there'd be something like a universal baseline. How long hair is worn and can be, in some cases, worn varies in different regions of the world.
  #14  
Old 07-13-2017, 06:54 AM
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I agree that shoulder length is just medium hair, but I think "arm pit length" is a bit too long for the cut off. Shoulder length is just shy of the cut off (assuming it's not an up-do).

Though I do agree with the implication by the OP that it's different for men. For men it's long when it starts to have that shape that's more than just shaggy. Shaggy is medium, and short stays on the head completely.

Women (still) don't tend to wear the shortest styles that men do.

Last edited by BigT; 07-13-2017 at 06:55 AM.
  #15  
Old 07-13-2017, 01:49 PM
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I agree that shoulder length is just medium hair, but I think "arm pit length" is a bit too long for the cut off. Shoulder length is just shy of the cut off (assuming it's not an up-do).
If it's an up-do you can't tell how long it is. And what do you mean by"the cut off"?

PS joke--if it's cut off it's not long.

Last edited by Hilarity N. Suze; 07-13-2017 at 01:51 PM.
  #16  
Old 07-13-2017, 03:06 PM
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Mid Calf to Ankle length
  #17  
Old 07-13-2017, 07:24 PM
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There are waaaaay too many contexts for this poll to really work.

1) are you talking in relation to stylists or hairstyles? In which case, there are specific terms for each length of hair, and if you're setting up an appointment, they'll want to know what they're working with, and "long" generally starts applying as soon as the hair is past the collarbones.

2) are you talking about populations with strong religious or cultural associations? Because what's "long" to an Amish person or a Pentecostal Holiness person, or someone from a rural or Catholic area isn't remotely going to match "long" for people with neutral associations to their hair length.

3) are you considering different hair types? "long" on someone with kinky hair or very curly hair could be dreds or an afro or simply really really dense hanging curls. Does that count as long, even if the length is all spiraled or kinked up?

4) personal biology. To my mother's eternal sorrow, neither she nor I have the type of hair that is strong or thick enough to grow long and look at all presentable. (I grew up in a culture that equated thick luxurious waist-length hair with Godliness). So "long" for me on other people is longer than waist-length, because of how I was raised, but "long" for my own self is long enough to pull it back with a banana clip or a ponytail elastic. Both of those are probably fairly off what the averaged answer for "long" hair.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:47 PM
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I look at shoulder length as the dividing line between long and short hair for women. Maybe it's better described as medium length. Below the shoulder blades I'd start calling it really long hair. By mid back or below I'd call it really hot.
  #19  
Old 07-14-2017, 03:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warm blood View Post
I included armpit length, which is in between shoulder and mid back.


So apart from voting, no one's gonna discuss why our definition of long differs so much?
What's to discuss? "Long" as applied to hair is a relative thing (check a dictionary and see how many definitions use the phrase "longer than usual") and what we measure against is cultural.

I'd go with longer than shoulder length. Armpit length is very long.
  #20  
Old 11-07-2019, 07:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naita View Post
What's to discuss? "Long" as applied to hair is a relative thing (check a dictionary and see how many definitions use the phrase "longer than usual") and what we measure against is cultural.

I'd go with longer than shoulder length. Armpit length is very long.
I voted armpit length; it's the closest option to what I perceive as long hair on a woman.

The question is an arbitrary one, similar to the one of where exactly outer space starts. A rule of thumb for me has always been that on a woman, hair becomes "long" roughly when it reaches the tips of the shoulder blades. The length of her neck may play a part in the perception of this, though. Armpit length may also be a good rule of thumb. Someone else may have a different standard.
  #21  
Old 11-07-2019, 07:46 AM
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We're discussing hair arising from the scalp, right?
  #22  
Old 11-07-2019, 09:05 AM
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Personally, long hair to me is shoulder length and longer. Really, it is any length where it is often "put up" to keep it out of the way during strenuous activities.
Anything past the armpit is really long. And really attractive in my opinion. But not many women have the time/inclination/hair strength to wear hair that long.
  #23  
Old 11-07-2019, 09:30 AM
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To me, it's bra-strap length, or mid-back. Currently mine's about waist length and I'm thinking of cutting it, but I don't want to go any shorter than that, or I won't feel like a longhair anymore.
  #24  
Old 11-07-2019, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
We're discussing hair arising from the scalp, right?
If armpit hair reaches the shoulders or mid-back, yes, I think that qualifies as long.
  #25  
Old 11-07-2019, 10:40 AM
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For me and my hair, shoulder length is long. The longest I could ever grow it was about 2" past my shoulders. But for the purposes of this discussion, I'd call armpit length long.

I had a friend whose hair reached the floor - I call that insanity! Altho Locks of Love (or one of those groups) did benefit when she decided to cut it off.
  #26  
Old 11-07-2019, 01:04 PM
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The authorities have spoken:

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Cowsills
Gimme head with hair
Long beautiful hair
Shining, gleaming,
Streaming, flaxen, waxen
Give me down to there hair
Shoulder length or longer
Here baby, there mama
Everywhere daddy daddy
Hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair
  #27  
Old 11-07-2019, 02:09 PM
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I voted "shoulder length", because I thought my hair was long when it was down to my shoulders. (I am a guy, but standards are standards).

That's for straight hair, which is what I got. Currently more or less a buzz cut. For curly hair, I don't know what my standard would be. The Lovely and Talented Mrs. Shodan has curly hair, and it would be shoulder-length if it were straight. But I don't think of her as having long hair.

FWIW.

Regards,
Shodan
  #28  
Old 11-07-2019, 02:22 PM
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I said shoulder length but that would be assuming all the various lengths would have to fall into either the short or long category.
  #29  
Old 11-07-2019, 02:32 PM
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I said armpit length, though I really meant "longer than shoulder length". If it's just brushing the shoulders it's not quite long enough for me to see it as "long".
  #30  
Old 11-07-2019, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
We're discussing hair arising from the scalp, right?
Not necessarily.
  #31  
Old 11-07-2019, 03:01 PM
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Shoulder-length is base-level for women's hair. It not short nor long. Armpit lenght is were long begins.
  #32  
Old 11-07-2019, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
I think you left out some options. Shoulder length is too short to qualify as long but anything longer than that qualifies in my opinion. Mid-back is getting into the "really long" category. Butt length is Rapunzel territory.
I agree. Long hair starts when it gets below the shoulder.
  #33  
Old 11-07-2019, 05:58 PM
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Originally Posted by magnusblitz View Post
If we're discussing "long" as solely in a "short" vs "long" binomial choice, then I'd say shoulders, because I really only use "short" for those styles which don't reach to the shoulders. But if we're getting more detailed than I could be talked into a lower definition.
Ditto.
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  #34  
Old 11-07-2019, 09:01 PM
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Touching the ear or collar equals long.

Actually, off the shoulder equals medium. Past the shoulder equals long.
  #35  
Old 11-07-2019, 09:22 PM
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Context is everything.
For a woman with shoulder-length hair, if someone asks "does she have long hair or short hair", I would definitely say "long".
In a police BOLO or APB, the description for a woman with shoulder-length hair would probably be "..., long hair, ...". So even shoulder-length hair is long hair.

However, if I'm sitting with a group of friends discussing each other's hair lengths, it would be said that those with mid-back-length hair have 'long hair', while those with shoulder-length hair would be 'shorter'.
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