A break-up. A new job. A dodgy incident with hair dye.
There are many reasons why someone, in particular women, opt for a dramatic haircut before entering the next stage in their lives. As the saying goes, 'Out with the old, in with the new'.
But, for Girls actress Jemima Kirke there was a lot more meaning behind her major haircut in late 2015, that had us all coveting a blunt bob and a pink hue.
Days after announcing her separation from her husband of seven years, Michael Mosberg, the actress has revealed problems in the pair's relationship resulted in the drastic hair change.
In an emotional interview with Style Like U – in which Kirke strips down to her underwear – she says: 'I was having a terrible moment with my husband in our relationship, and I was extremely hurt by him and extremely angry at him, and so I was feeling self-destructive.
'But for whatever reason I didn't do anything self-destructive really, I just cut my hair,' she added.
The mother-of-two even shared a video of her taking scissors to her hair.
The 31-year-old explained she also felt her hair was the only physical attribute that made her feel pretty.
'I felt like my hair was my go-to trick. I really believed for a while that without it I would be boring,' she revealed.
However, weeks after the couple's argument, Kirke told her now-estranged husband she wanted to cut more inches off her iconic hip-length hair. Surprisingly, Mosberg – who remains very close to Kirke – volunteered to chop it off.
She said: 'It was kind of romantic. It's nice to have someone you love cut your hair.'
Discussing egos, parenthood, perceptions of her and self-acceptance, the artist also revealed she's the complete opposite of her carefree Girls character, Jessa.
I felt like my hair was my go-to trick. I really believed for a while that without it I would be boring
She said: 'I'm riddled with neurosis, self-loathing and fear.
'I'm never in my head where I need to be. I'm always doing something wrong,' she added.
In light of Kirke's honesty about her emotional reason for her bold haircut, we look to other women in the limelight who have opened up about their decision to go for the chop.
Following the end of filming for Harry Potter, Emma Watson revealed her pixie haircut symbolised freedom after years of being confined to one look.
'I didn't get to experiment with dyeing and chopping off my hair like most teenagers,' she told Metro.
'I also felt, right, I'm 20, I'm not a little girl any more. I'd been on Harry Potter for ten years so I needed to mark the end of it in some way. I needed a drastic change and that's what the crop was all about,' she added.
The ELLE September cover star cut her hair shortly after filming ended on the Twilight franchise, leading many to speculate the drastic hair change was required for her upcoming role in the film, American Ultra.
However, the actress admitted there was a far more personal reason behind her transformation.
'My hair was such a crutch, she told Marie Claire US.
'I looked quote unquote 'sexy' no matter what. I could hide behind it.
'As soon as I didn't have all that hair, I had to let my face hang out. I felt more confident than I had in a really long time. And it felt really good.
'Maybe to most people long hair is prettier. But then what? Is your main goal in life to be desired? That is boring as f*ck,' she added.
The 2013 Great British Bake Off star and columnist recently penned an emotional essay for the February Issue of ELLE magazine about her decision to take an electric trimmer to her curly hair following a complicated relationship with her locks.
In the piece, Tandoh writes about the feminine stereotype associated with her hair.
'When I took the shaver to my head and sheared off the gold-streaked curls that I'd grown up with, I was casting off a softness that was both powerful and debilitating.
'My hair had allowed me to carry on feeling conventionally feminine, negotiating a place within a same-gender relationship that turned my heteronormative world view on its head,' she noted.
Explaining her new relationship with her buzz-cut hairstyle, she reveals it has made her feel both 'more masculine and more feminine'.
'It's forced me to be braver in the many small interactions I used to dread every day,' she added.
Following a painful separation from her ex-husband, Lamar Odom, the reality star chopped off her ombre-dyed, hip-length hair in favour of a 'Lob' (long bob).
Speaking on the Live! With Kelly and Michael show in early 2016, Khloe explained she cut her hair after spending days worrying about her ex's hospitalisation after being found unconscious in October 2015.
'I cut all of my hair off because I was in the hospital, and I just felt like I needed to get rid of this negativity.
'You shouldn't do haircuts when you're that emotionally confused, but I did, and I love it, though! It's so much easier,' she added.
A haircut is rarely just a haircut.