See Jennifer Garner's Major New Haircut: All About Her 'Jen G for Gen Z' Lob (Exclusive)

Jennifer Garner haircut
Jennifer Garner haircut

Adir Abergel

When Jennifer Garner hit the red carpet at the Big Night Out Gala, hosted by Big Brothers Big Sisters Los Angeles in Hollywood on Thursday night, the PEOPLE style team's Slack lit up with messages about her shoulder-skimming haircut (we're nothing if not committed to our jobs!).

We immediately messaged the star's longtime hairstylist and best friend Adir Abergel to find out what inspired the new look and how he styled it for its debut.

"I'm calling it The Jen G cut for Gen Z," Abergel tells PEOPLE.

And no matter that (despite her incredible grasp of social media) Garner isn't actually Gen Z: "This cut works for anyone at any age," he says. "You can have a transformation at any stage and hair is a wonderful reboot."

So why chop it now? "It's always nice to have a freshness for the holidays!"

RELATED: Jennifer Garner Describes Her 50th Birthday Party in April: 'I Basically Had a Wedding for Myself'

Jennifer Garner haircut
Jennifer Garner haircut

P. Lehman/Future Publishing via Getty; Emma McIntyre/Getty

Abergel opted to give Garner "texturized long layers for volume that sit on the collarbone" and "Bardot bangs to frame the face."

For the event, he chose to play up the new texture, starting with a nickel-size amount of the 6-in-1 Styler from his brand Virtue Labs (in which Garner is a brand partner). He applied it by "spreading it like hand cream on the palms of my hands, then applying from roots to ends to hydrate and protect from heat styling."

He used a diffuser to bring out Garner's natural texture and volume, focusing on the roots at first; once they were 60% dry, he slowly moved the dryer towards the ends. "This prevents the ends from getting dehydrated," he explains.

Next, he sectioned her hair and used a medium-size iron to create waves. Instead of wrapping the hair completely around the cylinder, he worked in opposing directions to create a "soft, natural look that complements the texture." (Want to try it yourself? Abergel advises not to pull the hair as you are waving it, so that you don't pull out the texture.)

To finish he applied Virtue Healing Oil from mid to ends for extra shine followed by Virtue Texturizing Spray to create an "airy and voluminous finish" to the hair.

Abergel and Garner are known for having fun with their hairstyle collaborations — even when they can't be together to do it. Garner has posted silly in-shower tutorials showing off Virtue's, well, virtues, and during the pandemic, Garner posted a video on Instagram of Abergel giving her a remote hair tutorial before a virtual appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

"It was actually really good to have him watch me do my hair because I've never paid attention to what he is doing," Garner told PEOPLE of the lockdown lesson. "He even talked me through how to cut my kids' hair snip by snip. He would just pour a glass of wine and FaceTime with me and talk me through it."