How many times have you walked into a salon with a photo of a haircut you absolutely love, only to discover that the shape of the style doesn’t work with your facial features? I’ve compiled a list of basic guidelines for hairstyles that compliment certain face shapes. Keep in mind that other things could be taken into consideration such as eye shape and width, size and shape of the nose and in some cases ear shape and size.
The basic face shapes are round, square, oval, and heart. Sometimes it is hard to tell which shape you are, there are some distinct features that help distinguish between the four.
The round face shape has soft curves around the edges. The edges of the face are the areas around the hairline and the jaw line. The round face shape isn’t the only one with soft edges, however the round face shape has roughly the same width as it does length.
Round face shapes do especially well with long layers and soft waves. A long bob is flattering for this face shape also. Hair around the sides of the face takes away from the width of a round face. Heavy bangs should be avoided, they will take away from any length the face has. Side swept or highly texturized bangs are much better.
The square face shape is determined by a distinct jaw line and a square forehead. When looking at the square face shape straight on the jaw line will be about the same width as the forehead, producing a square shape.
Square face shapes can pull off very long hair very well. The strong jaw line prevents the long hair from elongating the face while helping to soften the edge of the jaw line. A tapered bob is flattering for this face shape too. Again, hair around the sides of the face will take away some of the width of the jaw line. Soft fringy bangs are best, full bangs only enhance the square shape of the forehead and jaw line and should be avoided.
The oval face shape is the most versatile. The oval face shape has a little more length than it does width, which makes just about any hairstyle flattering. The only problem you may run into is length. Sometimes long hair will lengthen an oval face, drawing the features downward. If this happens bangs are a good option to help shrink the elongated look.
The heart shaped face is wider at the top, or forehead area and has a very soft jaw line, usually tapering to a pointy chin. In some cases the heart shaped face has a high hairline, adding to the heart shape.
The heart shaped face can pull off many different looks also. Long hair works with a heart shape, especially if styled wavy. Bobs work well as long as they hit below the jaw line, in order to add width to the chin area of the face. Bangs are perfect for this face shape as long as they are left long and side swept or at least texturized and not blunt-cut. Blunt bangs would only add to the heaviness at the top of the face, while longer bangs draw attention down to the eyes.