You’re super bored with your hair but way too scared to cut off any length so you decide, what the heck, why not get some bangs? Been there, done that, girlfriend! While bangs are a great way to mix up your look without all the commitment of a major chop, you definitely do need to do your homework before taking the plunge.
In addition to considering things like hair growth patterns, texture and density and forehead height and width, your face shape can help you determine the type of bangs that would look the most bangin’ on you. Peep this handy guide to learn the best bangs for your face shape!
Good news, girls: the fringe benefits are literally endless for oval faces! You can pretty much pull off every bang style in the book, according to bicoastal hairstylist Amalia Moscoso of The Hair Dame. “That’s because the general goal of bangs with any face shape is to balance it out to appear oval.”
One of the best bang styles for a square-shaped face is arched so that they’re longer on the sides of the face and shorter through the middle, says Doug David, owner and creative director of Douglas Carroll Salon. You know, sort of like a rainbow but not nearly as dramatic of an arch? Wispy angled bangs are another great choice. “Because the eye travels on a diagonal, they help to soften a severe square shape,” explains Dop Dop Salon master stylist, Jay Vosper. Beware of blunt bangs however, she warns, as they’ll only accentuate the sharp angles of the face.
The main objective of bangs on a round face is to create some angles, which is exactly what long, side-swept fringe does – the thicker, the better, says Moscoso. Do steer clear of blunt bangs, she cautions, as they tend to make most round faces just look rounder and cut off.
Believe it or not, a rectangular face looks the best with bangs, as bangs in general will balance this shape out, notes Moscoso. Go for straight across bangs that hit right at the eyebrows or just beneath them, she suggests. “Having the sides a little bit longer so that they fall at the cheekbone will also look nice and visually lift up the cheeks.”
Unfortunately, a heart-shaped face is almost always immediately recognizable if you’re rocking the wrong bangs, points out Moscoso. “These girls can wear either a straight down or a side swept bang; however, the key is to have the bangs start a little more inset than the width of the forehead,” she advises. This will help balance out the forehead, which is wider than the rest of the face, with the chin. Vosper agrees, adding that while short, side-swept bangs look great, she personally prefers a fringe that is straight across and longer on the side, like a seventies fringe a la Blondie or Jane Birkin.
According to David, a triangle face shape requires either an oval bang (think longer through the middle and shorter on the sides) or a short-to-long asymmetrical bang.
Did you know that Reese Witherspoon’s face is really an inverted triangle, characterized by a wider forehead and a pointy chin (all she lacks is the distinguishing widow’s peak feature of the heart)? Similar to heart shaped faces though, you’ll want to create the illusion of width at the bottom of the face and distract from the wideness of the forehead; that’s why choppy, side-swept bangs are the way to go, says Vosper.
“The best bangs for a diamond-shaped face are soft and sexy Bardot bangs, where there is fullness and length from the top and sides,” reveals Vosper. “They can either be parted in the center or side-swept depending on your mood, height of your forehead or styling capability.”
“Oblong face shapes can benefit from both square horizontal bangs or from the short-to-long asymmetric bang style,” informs David. Because they also typically have high foreheads, bangs on an oblong face will help camouflage this, plus the longer they are the more they’ll play down the overall length of the face, explains Vosper.
Now that you’ve learned the best bangs for your face shape, it’s time to get inspired by some of these bangin’ hairstyles!