Monday, July 25, 2011

Should I Wear Bangs?

One of the most frequently asked questions when I do a consultation. It isn't as simple as yes or no. The fringe, as it is much more elegantly named in other countries, is designed to work with the rest of the cut to create a flattering look.
That said here are a few points that might help you decide.
Bangs are more youthful than no bangs.
  • Bangs can reshape your face adding to or detracting from it.
  • Full blunt bangs will shorten and widen your face.
  • Bangs do not work well on those with a strong cowlick or split at their hairline. At least not without considerable effort and hairspray.
  • Soft, wispy bangs are generally the most flattering, thus the most common.
  • A low forehead hairline is generally best with very short bangs or very long and off the face.
  • An extremely high forehead is generally best with longer bangs.
  • A broad/wide forehead is usually best with bangs that are concave (longer on the sides than in the middle).
  • Asymmetrical or diagonally cut bangs are slenderizing.
Bang Trauma
We've all experienced it. B.T. Someone cut your bangs too short, probably your mother, possibly you, and there you were feeling naked to the world, pulling on your bangs to encourage rapid re-growth. Bang pulling is like pushing the elevator button to get the door to close. It doesn't do any good, but you still do it just in case.
Bang trauma is completely understandable. Bangs are the key face framer of the haircut. How they fall makes a huge difference in how you look. Bangs draw attention to or away from certain facial proportions. They can affect your face shape immensely. That being said, I don't understand how people without skill feel compelled to cut their own bangs, but it happens regularly.
Though generally best left to the professionals, there may come a time when you just didn't plan ahead. Here is my advice for those moments of madness when you JUST CAN'T STAND it any more and attack your bangs with your cuticle clipper.
Clues to Cutting Your Own Bangs
  • Don't cut your bangs when they are wet. Completely dry and style your hair as usual.
  • Shake your head and allow the fringe to fall naturally.
  • Don't raise your eyebrows! Relax your forehead, look straight ahead into the mirror, and with the point of the shear, trim just the straggles that are too long for you.
  • DO NOT CUT HORIZONTALLY unless you're going for Dutch Boy.
  • With a comb, lift the bangs 90 degrees from the forehead and with the tip of the shear very gently snip into the very ends to soften.
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