Style

3 hair experts on the right bangs for you

Step one: don't cut them yourself.

Step one: don't cut them yourself

(Credit: iStock/Getty Images)

Celebrities like Lana Condor, Constance Wu and Bella Hadid are all experimenting with bangs, and even though they tend to be of the clip-in variety, they can serve as great inspiration if you're thinking about getting your own fringe — be it temporary or permanent. But, there is much to think about before you follow suit! Not every bang hairstyle is ideal for every face shape. We went to three experts to find out exactly what you need to know before you head to your stylist and make the chop.

Fair warning, all of the pros warn that bangs require commitment. Marilisa Sears, Artistic Director for Marc Anthony True Professional, points out the maintenance, and that you'll need to stop by the salon every two or three weeks for a trim. If that sounds pricey, Sears notes,  "Most salons don't charge for this service as it legit takes about five to seven minutes. We want the cut to remain at its best!" Jason Lee, owner of Jason Lee Salon in Toronto, suggests starting with clip-on bang extensions from a beauty supply store to test out the look before you actually make it happen. And, once you go bang, it's not that easy to go back! "Bangs take a while to grow out, so you need to be aware that there is no quick solution," he says. Celebrity hairstylist Matthew Collins says he won't cut bangs unless a client is at least 75 per cent sure they want them. Remember, they can be fussy. "I also wouldn't suggest getting them going into the hottest months unless you have had them before," he adds.

The good news? You don't have to let a cowlick hold you back. "I think the number one misconception about bangs is that if you have a cowlick, you can't have a bang," says Lee. He teaches his clients to use a comb to push their cowlicks back while drying their hair to keep their new bangs flat. For Sears, she knows there's a right fringe style for every face shape. "Sometimes, I hesitate due to the way the hair grows," she adds. "But if the client is dedicated to the upkeep, I can be persuaded."

Now, onto the right bangs for you!

If you have a round face…

The trick here is to counteract that round shape, and avoid straight across bangs that will accentuate it. "Side swept, angled bangs are the most flattering to go for here," says Lee. Sears agrees, recommending lots texture and more of a curtain shape, which is also great if you're trying to avoid the maintenance of shorter bangs. Collins says that you can add shape to your face with your bangs, too. "Something that comes down slightly on the corners will accentuate the cheek bones."

If you have an oval face…

You win at life, because you can essentially pull off any bang shape if your face is long and slightly rounded. "You can rock any style you want," says Collins. "A shaggy or curtain fringe would look so amazing with this shape, though." Lee loves all bang styles for this face shape, too. "Micro bangs, curtain bangs, straight across – the world is yours for the taking," he says.

If you have a square face…

"A longer, straight across bang works," says Lee. "And I love to add a little soft texture to the fringe around the face to soften the angles." He also suggests avoiding those super trendy micro bangs. For more of an angular face, Sears loves a curtain fringe, but says that "heavy fringes work for this face type, too."

If you have a heart-shaped face…

Again, you'll want to consider more of a side-swept look, "with layering on the tips of the bangs to break up the weight," says Sears. Lee prefers a softer fringe for this face shape, too, and suggests avoiding anything too heavy that might accentuate a wider forehead and a pointier chin. He usually goes with a side-parted bang.

If your forehead is small…

A fringe cut or pushed to one side is best, says Collins, adding that "some pieces blending to the side [will] pop those cheekbones." Sears tends to go with a shorter fringe that ends just above the eyebrow, while Lee prefers to start the fringe further back on the head to create fuller, deeper bangs that run straight across.

If your forehead is big…

You have more space for those bangs, so go with a longer fringe. "Something like a curtain bang that goes longer towards the sides," suggests Lee, because it will minimize your forehead and limit the attention drawn to it. Sears agrees, favouring a longer, fuller fringe that ends just under the eyebrows for her clients with longer foreheads.


Tara MacInnis is a Toronto-based writer and editor with a deep love for lipstick, jumpsuits and dogs. Follow her on Instagram @tara_macinnis.

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