Girls, let’s just admit it: We love our hair. But one of the big beauty hurdles is trying to find that perfect haircut that make us look – and feel – fantastic.
And really, hair makes such a big difference to your look, so why wouldn’t you want to get it right?
Luckily, there are a few tips and tricks to help us when we have no idea where to look… and get this – it all boils down to our face shape. Once we have figured out what our face shape is, it is so much easier to find out what cuts and styles can flatter, making our search much less traumatic (don’t get me started on all the ‘trial and error’ I had to go through to find a cut that looked decent on me!).
To find your best hairstyle that suits you, there are 3 steps: finding out your face shape, seeing which style suits that face shape, and then trying them out virtually before making the plunge. Here is my step by step guide, where I will walk you through each section.
How to find your face shape
First up: the all important face shape. Here’s a short exercise to determine your face shape:
A quick note on the mirror – it’s better to have a full length mirror that you can stand in front in so you can see your face shape properly. Hand held mirrors might be too small to properly gauge your face shape. Here are more details for each face shape to get more information about it:
- Round: Your may have a round face if your hair and jawline are rounded, face is almost as wide as it is long and is widest at your cheekbones.
- Square: You may have a square face if your forehead is the narrowest part of your face, your jawline is strong, squarish and is the widest part of your face.
- Heart & Triangle: Heart and triangle face shapes are basically the same thing, but people tend to use different shapes to describe it. You may have a triangle or heart face shape if your face is slightly longer than wide and your jaw is the narrowest part of your face. You might also have a small chin and a “widow’s peak” on your hairline.
- Long: You might have a long face shape if your face is longer than wide, your forehead, cheekbones and jawline are the same width; and your hair and jawline are softly rounded.
- Oval: You might have an oval face shape if your face is ever so slightly longer than it is wide, your face is widest at its cheekbones and your jawline is softly rounded.
Got a good idea for your face shape? Great! Remember though, it doesn’t have to be exactly between the details above, but it might give you a better idea of your face shape. As long as it roughly resembles one of the shapes in the diagram above, then it’s safe to say that is your face shape.
That was fairly easy, no? Now for the tricky part…
Hairstyles for your face shape
Now that you’ve found your face shape, here are some guidelines for hairstyles that will suit your face shape, and ones that will not. My philosophy is that at the end of the day, do whatever you want; it’s your hair! But if you really want a style that is suited to your face shape, follow these guidelines and play around with your options.
Round Face: Long, layered straight to slightly wavy hair looks stunning on you! Side swept and long bangs will also suit you well. Avoid styles that will bring more width to your face, such as blunt bangs, bobs and big curls. They might make your face look rounder. The trick here is to elongate.
Long face: The key here is to widen your face, so focus on getting volume at the side. Hairstyles such as bobs, wavy and curly hair will add width to your face. Bangs work very well on long faces, especially blunt bangs. Avoid styles that “lengthen” the face, such as straight, long cuts. Avoid too long hair, which can drag your face down. Short to shoulder lengths look great on you!
Square: Softer hairstyles will work best with you to soften your sharp features, wispy bangs, soft romantic curls will look really pretty. Hairstyle with big volume look great too, check out How to: Get More Hair Volume for help on that. Avoid chin length cuts that may emphasis your strong jawline.
Oval: Lucky you, oval face shapes look great in anything! Experiment and see what you like best.
Heart & Triangle: Long and wavy hairstyles will look great on you. Keep your hair length to the longer side; as shorter cuts and styles may emphasise your smaller jaw area. Soft, side swept bangs looks great and will soften the jaw area as well to give your face some balance.
Try it out!
Once you know what to avoid and what might suit you, it’s time to try it out… by photo manipulation, of course. I’m extra careful so I always like to add in this step. Trying a style out first by photo manipulation is great if you want to play a bit safe before taking the plunge. It’s also great to get an overall feel of what you are getting before hand. So if you are handy at Photoshop, get to work! If not, there are plenty of makeover websites where you can upload a photo of yourself and ‘try on’ different styles.
InStyle Magazine’s Hollywood Makeover is a great virtual hair makeover tool I’d recommend; unless you’re great at photo editing, in which case just find a photo of a yourself and cut and paste different hairstyle images on it.
By photo manipulation, you can play around and see what suits you. Not to mention, it’s fun! Because the photo can still look a little fake, what I do is I squint my eyes at the photo manipulation so I can get an overall look and feel of the hairstyle. Or you can always blur the photo. Once you’ve done that, ask yourself: Does it look good overall? Was your initial response a positive one? If so, go for it.
Still not sure?
By now you should’ve gotten an overall sense of what suits your face shape and can start a fun journey of experimenting! If you feel like you’ve experimented too much or just want something simple, or are still not sure; that’s where the “universal cut” comes in.
I remember reading in Allure – the top beauty magazine in the world – that the ‘universal’ cut is shoulder-length hair with slight layers and a long side swept fringe. Make sure your hair has some nice hair volume to it too (check out How to: Get More Hair Volume for help). According to them, this cut flatters every face shape, hair type and is suitable at any age. I can personally vouch for that, as at one point in time all my girlfriends and I had this style and the style I have today is very much like it! It makes sense, too – the cut is simple, timeless and sophisticated; I don’t see why anyone wouldn’t suit it.
As you can see above, it’s a celeb favorite and no matter what hair type, age, or color, they look great in this style. So if you’re stuck on what to do, perhaps the Universal Cut is an option to try for now.
Share your results
Let me know what you think on Twitter – how did you find your “perfect” hairstyle? Also, please share this with a friend that you know is looking to change up their hairstyle and want to find one that suits them best.
P.S. Just in case, but here’s how to fix a bad haircut.