Undercuts are fun, man. They allow you to play with your looks and they can be extremely beneficial to some. But of course, there are people who are scared to go for an undercut because it's shaving a part of your head off. And the longer your hair is (and/or the more attached to it you are), the more frightening it is to think about shaving your beloved locks off.
If you are toying around with the idea of getting an undercut, here are some tidbits of info that people don't really tell you about undercuts.
People who can pull off undercuts best are those with thick hair. People with thick af hair use undercuts to take some weight off of their head, and when your hair is down, it looks like you have normal, “I-totally-didn't-shave-my-head-mom" type hair. People with thinner hair sadly do not have this sort of luxury. If you have thin hair and get an undercut on both sides of your head or all-around your head, you might end up looking a tad bit like Gollum. If you have thinner hair but you really want to try an undercut, I recommend only shaving one side of your head instead of both or all around.
If you are genderfluid/genderqueer/non-binary (or anything on the transgender spectrum, really), getting an undercut is really helpful with easing gender dysphoria. I personally had all of my head shaved except for the top part (which I always keep above shoulder length), and it was perfect because I could just put it up or down depending on where my dysphoria was at on certain day.
Undercuts do in fact make you feel badass af. When you look badass, you tend to feel badass. However, do not be tricked that the undercut life is a breezy one (actually, jk, when your head is shaved, it will be very breezy up there). What I'm trying to say is, is that undercuts require maintenance. It can be annoying because you need to get your head re-shaved about every 3-5 weeks. If you end up getting an all-around shave (like mwah), then it can start becoming a nuisance because, if you are anything like me, I could not shave my head myself and I did not have the tools to shave my head and I did not trust any of my friends with my hair. That meant hiking up to a barbershop and shelling out $10-$25 on a simple shave every month (with money I probably should have spent on food). If you stick to side shaves or only one side shave, then investing in a razor is not a bad idea. This way you can easily save yourself the trip and the extra money on getting a pro to renew your shave. However, whenever getting a normal haircut, do let your barber/hairdresser shave your undercut. They may suggest doing cool patterns and such and that is always a fun idea.
Growing out the undercut. Dun dun dunnnn. Because undercuts actually require more maintenance than normal hair, I threw in the towel after four months of having an undercut and decided to grow it out. In university, I'm not picky about my looks like 80% of the time, so the less effort the better. Having an undercut was fun while it lasted, but I did miss having a full head of hair from time to time. I personally thought the outgrow was going to be an ugly, itchy mess. I even bought a wig. I was surprisingly wrong. Fortunately for the most part, when growing my hair out, I actually liked the look. During the middle months was definitely not the highlight of this time, but I got through it and it wasn't terrible. I really got into wearing hats, though, but it was also the summertime so I could totally get away with it.
As someone whose hair is somewhere below the chin and above the shoulders, as of today, my undercut has still not completely grown out. It has been about 9 months since my last shave and it's almost done growing. The most annoying part about it is not how it looks, but rather at a certain point, it does become kind of itchy. You may want to get the tips cut or the hair on the back of your neck to be taken care of by a professional (if you don't know how to do it yourself) so it doesn't bother you very much.
Here are some photos of my ~transformation~ if you are interested in seeing the grow-out process of an all-around undercut looks like. Please do not be alarmed by the makeup selfies, they are just photos with a good representation of the stages of my undercut.
These first 3 photos were before I started growing out my undercut, to show you how versatile an undercut can be.
This was taken after a month or two of letting my undercut grow out. I was so worried it would look horrid for a formal, but it looked fine.
This was taken in late July (about 4 months into my growout). You can also see how my undercut was around my entire head.
This was my hair down with the growout. You can't tell I have an undercut with my hair down at all.
This picture was taken today, 9 months into the grow out. The hair at the very back of my head is longer and needs to be cut. The grown-out undercut is almost chin length.
Like I said at the very beginning: undercuts are fun. If you want one and you are willing to keep up with its maintenance, go for it. It's just hair, it'll grow back, trust me (even if the grow-out can be painstakingly long).