The Most Flattering Bangs For Every Face Shape

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If you've been wondering whether a risky chop is for you, you're not alone. A study on personal appearance carried out by OnePoll in association with Clairol found that 66% of women surveyed said they craved doing something new with their hair (via New York Post). The coronavirus pandemic certainly brought enough change for most of us, but the perilous fascination with bangs continued into 2022 with "cool-girl bangs" on the horizon of popular hairdos (via Vogue). In fact, the popularity of DIY bangs has increased since 2020, and with all kinds of how-to guides on TikTok, it's been easier than ever to cut your own bangs from home.

That being said, if you want them to come out right, stylists recommend getting a professional cut — at least the first time around! "Cutting your own hair. Don't," Virginia salon owner Alanea Manuel told The Washington Post. "That could end up very bad," Manuel said. The stakes are high, friends, and those kitchen scissors just aren't going to cut it (pun intended).

Moreover, one of the most important things to consider before settling on a new fringe is your type of face shape, which you can measure yourself. This is exactly why you should seek out a professional — most know exactly how to frame, smooth, or break up your face shape in the perfect way.

Round face style 1: long, sweeping side bang

Having a round face is considered so much of an aesthetic struggle that it even has its own TikTok community. As TikTok user jigglyjulia put it bluntly, "I always look like I'm a child." In an age of snatched eyebrows, heavy contouring, and siren eyes, getting compliments like "you're cute" is bound to clash with the popular villain-era aesthetic (via Elle).

It may seem that round faces don't get the attention they deserve, but it wasn't always this way. Round faces were a popular beauty standard during the pre-World War I era and into the 1920s (via The Washington Post). Early 20th-century actress Lillian Russell was even known as a "goddess with big rounded cheeks" and was the embodiment of feminine beauty. So, if you were a trendsetter once, you can certainly do it again! As hairstylist Jon Reyman told Glamour, "If you style it and own it, you can rock any type of bangs no matter what face shape you have."

As far as complimentary cuts go, Reyman recommended a longer, side-sweeping fringe for those with round faces: "The angle of the bangs creates more length in your face and thus a more oval shape." Drew Barrymore, looking fierce in the picture above, has debuted variations of the side bang for years which completely changed the look of her face each time. Furthermore, long bangs also let you show off more of your beautiful face!

Round face style 2: choppy blunt bangs

If the side bang isn't satisfying enough for you and you want to go bold, Mila Kunis is just the inspiration you need. According to Cosmopolitan, she also has a round face shape. Check out how amazing those choppy black bangs look on her! This is an especially nice fringe for those who want to show off their eyebrows — why hide them when you've put so much work into shaping them?

Though these straight-across bangs work well to break up the symmetry of the face, you can also disrupt the roundness with added layering. Stylist Sarah Lund recommended running with the natural angles of your face for best results (via Oprah Daily). While discussing Billie Eilish's viral wolf cut from 2021, Lund said, "The choppy layers create movement around the chin and jawline, which helps soften a round face." Special note for people with short hair: Make sure you go for choppy bangs rather than super manicured blunt bangs, or else you may turn out looking like Lord Farquaad (unless that's your thing).

Heart-shaped face style 1: baby bangs

Next up: The heart-shaped or inverted-triangle face. People with heart-shaped faces get to have all the fun. The natural angles of your face allow you to play around with edgy, asymmetric cuts that the rest of the population can only dream of. For you, only the best statement bangs. As celebrity stylist Nick Stenson told, "If you're feeling bold and ready to push the bounds of tradition, make an appointment with your stylist for that micro fringe!"

Micro bangs, also known as baby bangs, are an eye-catching look in 2022. According to celebrity hairstylist Ashley Streicher, "They are making a comeback from the late '90s, early 2000s when — in my opinion — Gwen Stefani made them so popular" (via Bustle). You also probably saw Barbie Ferreira rocking this hairstyle in the Season 2 finale of "Euphoria." Baby bangs may seem like a risky option, but they're absolutely made for heart-shaped faces. Pair them with long, unlayered hair for an edgier look, or short hair for a more playful vibe. If you're nervous about going super short, French hairstylist Odile Gilbert has advised you to grab some clip-in bangs to try first (via Vogue).

Heart-shaped face style 2: side-swept bangs

If you're not a fan of micro bangs but you still want a flattering fringe for your heart-shaped face, experts recommend side-swept bangs. This breezy fringe gives off a completely different vibe than the baby bangs and will change how people's eyes land on different parts of your face. "A heart-shaped face can be a little top heavy," stylist Andy Lecompte told InStyle. "Side-swept bangs have a balancing effect and draw the attention down and towards the eyes," says Lecompte. In other words, the goal is to minimize a wider forehead by creating an angle across it.

Reese Witherspoon, pictured above, looks great with these wispy bangs — not to be confused with the side bang that was all the rage in 2009 (via Glamour). These are light, fluffy, and fluid, giving her a super feminine, windswept look. That being said, a word of caution: Before you get this fringe, consider how you want to keep it out of your eyes as it grows or how often you're willing to get it trimmed. Bangs are already a setup for forehead breakouts (via Allure), but brushing them out of your face all the time is going to add even more insult to injury.

Oval face style 1: straight-across bangs

When you're sitting in the salon chair with an overgrown mane and a grown-out fringe from 2018, it's easy to feel like your face looks like an egg. The truth is, your oval-shaped face is actually the gold standard used by most stylists, according to hairdresser and popular YouTuber Brad Mondo (via YouTube). "As a hairstylist, typically, — not all the time for everybody — but our goal is to make your face appear more oval," Mondo said. 

That being said, hair experts do have a couple of recommendations for what fringe looks best, especially for those with large foreheads and long chins. According to Suave Professionals stylist Marcus Francis, "blunt bangs cut straight across visually flatter oval faces" (via Glamour). Dakota Johnson's straight-across bangs obscure her forehead for a more balanced look overall. Her stylist Mark Townsend additionally recommended that you "ask for bangs that hit between the brow and the eyelash and are longer on the edges" (via InStyle). He added, "That way, you can wear them swept aside or straight with a middle part."

But watch out, curly-haired people! Celebrity hairstylist Ted Gibson has said to proceed with caution (via Us Weekly). "Those with curly hair need a bit of softness and bangs need to be broken up a bit," Gibson says. "If you have curly hair, it's important to not have your hairdresser cut blunt, straight across bangs."

Oval face style 2: crescent bangs

If straight-across bangs aren't right for your aesthetic, try some crescent bangs! Adorned by the likes of Zendaya, Selena Gomez, and Taylor Swift, this fringe is flirty, femme, and soft. The rounded arch of the bangs creates a super feminine vibe and looks amazing when paired with face-framing layers.

Whether you go light and wispy like Selena or blunt and heavy like Zoey Deschanel, crescent bangs are sure to make your face look even more oval and symmetric. No matter how you style it, it's going to look good. eSalon educator Courtney Goebel explained: "Symmetry is key with long face shapes and heavy bangs are a great way to own your face shape while flattering it too. ... The symmetry of oval faces also opens up your styling options, so you can go for an undone shaggy style or glam up with a picture-perfect rounded flip. Lucky for you, the choice is yours."

Rectangle or square style 1: curtain bangs

Curtain bangs have been around since the '70s, thanks to the shag haircut and models like Farrah Fawcett. In the 2020s, this fringe is more popular than ever. The topic has even racked up more than 2 billion views on TikTok! It's not just for Gen Z either; celebrities like Jennifer Lopez even got in on this trend. The best part about this style is the ability to grow it out painlessly. "The shorter and blunter the fringe, the more frequent the upkeep — usually about every four weeks," Toronto stylist Samantha Stonehouse explained to Chatelaine. "Curtain bangs or side-swept fringe can last a long time, more like six to eight weeks to maintain the style."

While some stylists have said curtain bangs are for everyone (via Vogue), there are a few reasons why it works especially well for those with rectangular or square-shaped faces. When it comes to minimizing a wide forehead or a sharp jawline, stylist Jon Reyman has said curtain bangs are an easy win (via Glamour). "If you have a square jawline, a long, layered fringe can help to soften and balance your features," Reyman said. Style icon Kim Kardashian, who is known to have a rectangular face, transformed her mane in 2022 into a blonde shag, rocking choppy curtain bangs for a photo shoot with Interview Magazine.

Rectangle or square style 2: long, grown-out bangs

Another hot tip for cutting bangs on a rectangular or square face: Go for a more delicate fringe. The over-the-eyebrow, wispy bangs above are just what the doctor ordered. "Square face shapes should avoid harder, blunt-looking fringe," explained Samantha Stonehouse (via Chatelaine). "Try a softer wispy fringe that's longer around the temples or a side-swept look."

Stonehouse additionally recommended that you choose the length of your fringe based on what feature you'd like to highlight most (via Chatelaine): "For example, short baby bangs will focus on your eyebrows or glasses. Brow-skimming bangs will focus attention to your eyes, while a curtain fringe will accent cheekbones or nose. ... Flattering bangs should frame and focus on your positive features—not overwhelm or cover up your face." This is another reason to go for see-through bangs as you'll want your eyebrows to show through to help balance out your strong jawline and pronounced cheeks.

Diamond face style 1: side-swept or curtain bangs

Like the oval face, the diamond-shaped face looks good with a wide variety of fringe styles. According to cosmetic surgeon Dr. Julian De Silva's research, the diamond-shaped face was on the rise as one of the most popular face shapes in the 2010s. "Megan [Fox] is one of the great screen beauties of her age and she has a symmetrically perfect diamond-shaped face," Dr. De Silva told Daily Mail in 2017. "More women covet this shape than any other." Hairstylist Brad Mondo has also spoken about the rising popularity of the diamond shape (via YouTube), so it's definitely still relevant!

According to Chicago salon creative director Amy Abramite, it's all about framing your face. "Side-swept bangs or a deep side part is flattering since it lays across the forehead covering half of it" (via Byrdie). Likewise, New York City stylist Lauren Thompson said, "face-framing bangs are great to accentuate the cheekbones while balancing out a narrow forehead" (via Byrdie).

In terms of length, feel free to shorten it to your preference. In Mondo's video about bangs, we learn that "the length of your bangs don't matter much here." Though Mondo has also said feathering helps to soften any sharp angles on your face, it's emphasized that "whatever you want to do with the diamond face, it's pretty much fine."

Diamond face style 2: micro bangs

If you want all the fun of bangs without having to constantly brush them off of your face or out of your eyes, you'll love having baby bangs. A great example of this style on a celebrity is Emma Watson's choppy, fluffy micro bangs (as seen above). Though they don't cover as much of your forehead as side-sweeping bangs would, you can always choose to cut them longer or shorter to frame your face the way you want it. Vanity Salon's Edmondo Blando has said, worst case scenario, if you get micro bangs in the winter but can't stand them, "they will grow out by summer" (via Today). Sage advice!

Baby bangs have been a big part of beauty culture since the early 1900s, though they really picked up steam mid-century. "The 1950s was about baby bangs," hair expert Diana Hylton told Bustle while reviewing the long history of fringes. According to stylist Odile Gilbert, Emma's hair was styled with Audrey Hepburn's bangs in mind (via Vogue). "I think baby bangs are always in fashion," Gilbert added. "It's always cute and young, it's very French."

Elongated face style 1: Birkin bangs

Once you start looking for them, you'll see Birkin bangs everywhere. These are basically below-eyebrow bangs that are straight-across, layered, and thinned out for a breezy vibe. As you may have guessed, they are named after the woman who popularized them, Jane Birkin. This film star and singer became a fashion icon in her youth — her fame boosted by her film cameos and her relationship with famous songwriter Serge Gainsbourg.

History aside, these simple bangs are a great way to break up a long face or change the focus of the viewer's gaze. "Keeping the fringe line low right around your eyebrows is best," was stylist Jon Reyman's advice to Glamour. Another stylist, John Stedman, told Good to Know: "The number one rule is you don't want anything super harsh that accents the length of your face." Additionally, "upping the volume of your hair at the sides will give the illusion of a shorter face shape" as well, Stedman said.

Elongated face style 2: asymmetric bangs

We think this style would look amazing on oblong faces, and the experts agree! When it comes to finding the perfect fringe for an elongated head, it's all about creating movement across the face. In other words, use your larger forehead to your advantage. "Creating a diagonal angle on your face will help keep people's eyes focused on your center features, like your eyes and lips, instead of your forehead or the lower part of your face," Suave Professionals stylist Marcus Francis told Glamour when asked for a professional opinion. 

As far as styles go, you have plenty of cuts to work with. If you're looking for something bold, try angled micro bangs (as pictured above). If you're looking for something less dramatic, or you want more styling options, a strong side bang might be in order. Emma Roberts is a great inspo for this style; nearly every picture of her shows off her signature side bang.

Whether you opt for a sweeping side bang or a blunt asymmetric fringe, we're pretty sure no one else in your circle will have such baddie bangs!

Triangle or pear-shaped face style 1: curtain bangs

You likely have this face shape if your face is wider at the bottom than at your temples — like a triangle or pear. The good news is that hats probably fit you better than most. The bad news is you may have no idea what to do when you want to change up your hairstyle. Thankfully, public figures like Meghan MarkleKelly Osbourne, and Billie Piper are trailblazing for you, finding what works and what doesn't. 

Much like with the rectangular face shape, the pear-shaped face needs a bit of softening. This calls for long bangs — we're talking bangs so long they wrap under your chin. "Choose curtain bangs or side-swept bangs to widen the forehead, and tapering going in to soften the jawline," salon owner Natalie Palomino said in a video about how to frame triangle-shaped faces. As you can see in the above picture, Meghan made some subtle curtain bangs work for her. According to Palomino, you can also reframe this face shape with plenty of layers: "This year's modernized shag is the perfect haircut for this face shape, as it creates a lot of width at the top, opening up the forehead while narrowing in and softening the larger jawline."

Triangle or pear-shaped face style 2: side bangs

It may come as a shock, but side parts and side bangs are back in style! Alongside all of the other fabulous fringes on this list, side bangs are acceptable to wear once again. After the #middlepartchallenge started a culture war between millennials and Gen Z, experts give side fringes the go-ahead! "I feel like side bangs are trending again because they are flattering on any face shape or forehead size," stylist Shenise Sheena told Mane Addicts. "Really, anyone can wear them."

As Natalie Palomino explained in detail on TikTok, side bangs work well for a triangular face shape whereas straight-across bangs don't. "Try not to choose haircuts with a flat, straight bang going down," she said. "This can cut the face in half and make it look short and wide." Another pro tip from the salon owner: Add lots of volume up top. "Choose haircuts that create width or height at the top to take attention away from the narrow forehead," she added. Like with rectangular faces, a little bit of hair can balance out the entire face.