If you’re a steady reader of this Pro Tips series, you may remember a pair of articles we shared with you just a few weeks ago.
In these articles, our esteemed panel of ace professional stylists discussed how to choose the most flattering hairstyle for your face shape.
And we’re happy to report your response to this expert advice was nothing short of phenomenal!
We received dozens of emails thanking our salon pros for their suggestions…
...and for the chic, utterly delightful hairstyles those ideas helped create!
“All around the country, women just like you are trusting our expert stylists’ advice to transform their hair!”
But to be perfectly honest, for each message of praise and thanks you sent our way…
...there were other notes, posing a new, seriously urgent question:
“MY FACE IS THIS SHAPE...WHAT SHOULDN’T I DO?”
This is, of course, a smart question to ask about any styling decision.
Because it’s just as important to know what hairstyles and cuts will enhance your best features…
...as it is to avoid those styles that shine a spotlight on those more problematic areas!
So, we reached out once again to our team of talented salon stylists, and asked them:
“What are some must-avoid hairstyles for particular common face shapes?”
By arming yourself with this carefully considered professional advice…
...you’ll be able to avoid a potential styling disaster any time you visit the salon!
SQUARE FACE: DON’T FEAR THE FRINGE
The classic fringe is a fabulous way to give your hair a carefree natural vibe, without sacrificing that fresh-from-the-salon edge.
But if you have a more squarish shape to your face, too much edge may not be your friend!
That’s according to Sandra Favia, a senior stylist for Australia’s celebrated Revolution Hairdressing salon.
“Square-faced lassies must steer clear of blunt, heavy, and straight fringes,” says Favia. “It makes the squareness of the jaw more pronounced.”
So, if you crave a fringe, Favia recommends a more rounded finish to your cut, or a “jagged or choppy” style, rather than razor-straight, squared-off ends.
“Stylishly loose but neat lines can give your fringe the shape and contrast you need to keep your face’s angles softer.”
She also emphasizes the need for regular salon touch-ups to keep up that soft veneer.
“I recommend every three weeks,” says Favia, “if you wish to maintain a constant fringe length.”
Sharing Favia’s tips with your own stylist will help smooth your face’s corners and angles…
...giving you exactly the free-and-easy fringed appearance you seek!1
ROUND FACE: HIP TO BE SQUARE
When your face is a rounder shape, your goal is to add some sharper lines to your look.
That’s why Daniela Schult, senior stylist for New York’s Cutler/Redken Salon, advises avoiding styles that bring additional curves to your head.
- Styles with a pronounced fullness to the sides, such as sweeping side bangs
- Rounded hairstyles, like a heavily layered, scalp-hugging bob
- ...or any style that ends right at or above your chin...the iconic pageboy is a textbook example of this
“These things,” says Schult, “tend to make round faces even rounder.”
Instead, she suggests, “go for elongation...and balance the face shape out with center parts and soft layers.”
For example, a simple, shoulder-length straight cut, parted in the center, will draw out your forehead and chin beautifully.
“Keeping those locks pin-straight, and parted down the center, adds some much-desired length to your features.”
Or you can sculpt some voluminous waves...their body and bounce working to play down the rounded curves of your features.2
The key, says Schult, is to think sharp.
“Square shapes are great for round faces,” she emphasizes, “whether it’s in the form of layers, or within the contour lines, in order to balance the roundness of the face.”3
Schult’s suggestions make one thing abundantly clear:
Just because your face is round...that doesn’t mean your hair can’t rock a little edge!
THE “WANNABE”: A UNIVERSAL NO-NO
Think of the last time you were browsing the racks at your favorite clothing store…
...and came across an item or outfit that, thanks to poor tailoring or ill-chosen color combinations, had you thinking:
“This wouldn’t look good on anybody!”
Well, it works the same way with hairstyles. Some combine layers, shapes, and volume in ways that are difficult for anyone to pull off.
With that in mind, we’d like to call your attention to a style Jenna Mast of Manhattan’s Préma salon has given a special name.4
She calls it the “wannabe lob,” and says this is simply a “super bad haircut”...no matter your face shape!
“The dull, just-sorta-there finish of the lob is not designed to flatter any woman’s face shape or features.”
“What happens is, girls get bored of their shoulder-length hair,” Mast explains, “and want face-framing layers, or angles around the front.”
But, she says, “if you don’t have a lot of hair from the back of your ear to the hairline, you’re asking for something that isn’t going to look like you have gorgeous, full, sexy hair.”
Instead, you’ll end up with a sort of in-between style. “It’s not quite a bob and not quite long hair,” says Mast. “It just hangs there, without much of a style...It will look dated or over-layered.”
Mast’s best advice for avoiding the lifeless effect of the wannabe lob:
“It’s important to pick a lane. You can’t have fun, short layers in the back if you want to keep some length.”
In the end, for Mast, it’s all about strong communication with a stylist you trust.5
If you can explain the style you’re going for in a clear, concise way...and your stylist is honest with you about your face’s suitability for that style…
...the result will always fit and flatter your most distinctively memorable features!
STEPPING OUT IN THE RIGHT STYLE
No doubt about it:
When it comes to looking and feeling your best, it all comes down to the choices you make...for better or worse.
And that includes avoiding a hairstyle that can take your natural features...and turn them into flaws!
That’s why we hope the hair do’s and don’ts shared by our seasoned styling pros prove useful to you.
Because we want to make sure, whenever you step out of your favorite salon…
...you never find yourself taking the first step on a walk of hairstyling shame!
- McMeekin, Sophia, and Sophia. “The Best and Worst Fringes For Your Face Shape.” The UrbanList Com, The Urban List, 20 Sept. 2014, www.theurbanlist.com/brisbane/a-list/best-worst-fringes-your-face-shape.
- Marino, Julia. “The 45 Best Hairstyles for Round Faces.” Redbook, Redbook, 5 June 2018, www.redbookmag.com/beauty/hair/advice/g656/hairstyles-for-round-faces/.
- Moorhouse, Victoria. “The Biggest Haircut Mistakes for Your Face Shape.” StyleCaster, 19 Aug. 2015, stylecaster.com/beauty/best-hairstyle-for-face-shape/.
- “Home.” Jenna Mast, www.jennamast.com/.
- Madormo, Carrie. “Haircuts You Should Never Consider Getting.” TheList.com, The List, 6 Oct. 2017, www.thelist.com/74514/7-haircuts-consider-getting-7-shouldnt/.