The Weeknd Cut His Hair, and We Can’t Feel Our Faces

We are not Abel to feel our faces right now. The Weeknd shocked fans with two bombshells in one Instagram post Wednesday, September 21: He’s releasing a new album very soon, and he cut off his signature sky-high dreadlocks!

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The “Acquainted” singer, also known as Abel Tesfaye, scrubbed his Instagram account of every selfie, photo shoot and video from months past to put the onus on his latest upload. “NEW ALBUM COVER / TITLE shot by @nabildo #STARBOY,” the musician, 26, captioned. In the shot, he gazes at the camera wearing a leather jacket and a cross necklace while resting his hands on his head, free of his long dreadlocks. A source close to the Toronto native exclusively tells Us Weekly that his new ‘do goes hand in hand with his new sound.

NEW ALBUM COVER / TITLE shot by @nabildo #STARBOY

A post shared by The Weeknd (@theweeknd) on

“He cut his hair for the new album, to give it a fresher look to match the feel of the album,” the source reveals. “It was a deliberate decision like a lot of artists do. New album, new look. He has been trying not to be photographed to unveil it all in a very deliberate rollout.”

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The Weeknd, who once sung that his “hair be growing like a fuckin’ Saiyan,” told Rolling Stone that his aesthetic was partially inspired by legendary artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. “I want to be remembered as iconic and different,” he told the magazine in 2015, explaining why he chose to grow it out four years ago at the time. “So I was like, ‘Fuck it — I’m gonna let my hair just be what it wants.’ I’ll probably cut it if it starts interfering with my sight. I can kind of see it right now. But if I cut it, I’d look like everyone else. And that’s just so boring to me.”

The Weeknd
The Weeknd before his new haircut. Jason Merritt/Getty; Kevork Djansezian/Getty (2)

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Someone who didn’t find his tall hair boring? Taylor Swift. “She was kind of, like, petting my hair? I think she was just drawn to it — she must have been a little gone off a few drinks,” he continued, recalling their encounter after the 2015 Grammys. “And of course I’m not going to be like, ‘Hey, can you stop?’ I mean, it felt good!”

Since he doesn’t have to spend as many moments in the stylist’s chair, hopefully he’ll have some more time to spend with his girlfriend of over a year, Bella Hadid.

“He is still with Bella, but he’s been so hunkered down in the studio finishing the album nonstop that he hasn’t seen anyone,” the source continues. “He’s been almost completely in hiding to finish it. It’s been his entire focus right now, which is why people think he’s disappeared. He’s been in Toronto a lot.”

But the Grammy winner should be coming out of hiding, slowly but surely. “His album will be a surprise album dropping very, very soon,” the source dishes. “Like the next few weeks soon.”

Christina Garibaldi and Ian Drew dished on all the latest during Us Weekly‘s Facebook Live News Update.  Check it out!

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