Tired of Hearing "It'll Grow Back?"
Utilize your best accessory
The bad news is, it turns out your best accessory isn't that new Louis Vuitton after all.
"Your first accessory is your hair. If you really care about your own self image, you take care of your hair," says Teddie Kossof of Teddie Kossof Salon in Northfield, Ill.
The good news is, unlike your latest handbag, your haircut can disguise any misgivings you may have about your face shape. Our insiders tell us the great thing about your hairstyle is it can bring out the best in your face shape and features, while concealing the trouble areas, when cut the right way.
The oval face shape
For oval face shapes, focus on a cut that adds width without elongating the face, suggests Pascal Igbui of Pascal Pour Elle salon, located in Glenview, Ill. and Glencoe, Ill.
Celebs who share your face shape: Queen-of-chic Sarah Jessica Parker and classic beauty Jennifer Anniston.
Most flattering cut: Volumized layers will add width to the face. If you have a natural wave to your hair, embrace it - it will give the illusion of width.
Bangs: Igbui tells us that bangs look great on the oval face shape. The oval face shape is the ideal face to experiment with different types of bangs, be it blunt bangs straight across the forehead, side-swept bangs, short bangs or long bangs.
Avoid: Although generally every hair length can work for the oval face shape, stay away from extremely long lengths and long layers. Also avoid height at the crown of the head and extra short cuts.
The round face shape
Your goal is to make the face appear slimmer from the sides to minimize the
appearance of roundness.
Celebs who share your face shape: Cute Drew Barrymore and
girl-next-door Kirsten Dunst.
Most flattering cut: A few shorter, face-framing layers will create height at the crown of the head and elongate the face; however, the overall length of hair and layers should be longer. Try graduated long layers, recommends Kossof.
Bangs: Round face shapes generally look better without bangs. If you must have bangs, keep them extra long.
Avoid: Short hair lengths should be strictly avoided. Ideally, hair should be cut at the collarbone or longer.
The heart face shape
Consider yourself lucky—our hair insiders label the heart-shaped face as the "anything works" face. Your only qualm is to find a style that strengthens the overall shape of your face and features.
Celebs who share your face shape: Johnny Depp's gorgeous partner Vanessa Paradis and super-human Naomi Campbell.
Most flattering cut: Try anything and everything. As Igbui puts it, "Anything works for this face shape."
Bangs: Bangs can only enhance your face shape, so make sure you have them! Experiment with a variety of styles. Are your eyes your best feature? Try a fringe bang across your forehead. Want your cheekbones to pop? Try a longer, soft bang that grazes your cheeks.
Avoid: There's not much to avoid when your face shape matches Paradis or Campbell.
The square face shape
A haircut that softens your face is ideal for the square face shape.
Celebs who share your face shape: Exotic Salma Hayek and forever-youthful Demi Moore.
Most flattering cut: Medium layers that shape the face and soften the jaw.
Bangs: Long bangs will help soften features. Bangs should never be short or box off at the edges, Kossof recommends. Avoid:
Short bobs, extra long styles, or any haircut with sharp, angular lines should be avoided.
Judging beyond the face shape
While our insiders say it's important to take your face shape into account before choosing a haircut, there are more factors that come into play. Igbui places emphasis on one's "overall look" and coupling it with face shape to determine an accurate hairstyle and length.
"If someone is more petite and has smaller features, a shorter haircut would balance the overall look and style for that person. If a person is taller and has stronger features, longer hair would work best," says Igbui.
Balance is also a factor that can be overlooked. Parto Naderi, owner of Parto Naderi Salon in River North, says that even a person's placement of their part in their hair is important because it can greatly affect the balance of their face.
For Tara Reilly, a stylist at Salon Soca in Lincoln Park, haircuts should focus more on particular features as much as face shapes. If eyes or cheekbones are your best assets, ask your stylist for a cut that will highlight those areas. If you have reservations about particular features, Reilly says these are just as easy to disguise.
"If you have a huge forehead, you need bangs, bangs, bangs... For large ears, consider a shaggier cut with layers… Small faces or narrow foreheads should avoid bangs that tend to bury the face," says Reilly.
Bob-ilicious trends... Choose a do' that works for you
Our insiders tell us the most popular haircut that women want these days is "the bob."
"Today, most people want to see a bold styled look, which is why the bob is popular," said Parto Naderi. "Most people think they have to complicate the bob, but the truth is a bob is beautiful because it is simple and it should stay simple."
While trendsetters Victoria Beckham, Rihanna and Nicole Richie might rock the bob quite well, remember that it may not work for your own face shape.
According to Naderi, people should not get a bob if they have:
A round face: bobs add fullness.
Thick hair: hair will not lay flat with a bob cut.
A bob is ideal for people with straight hair in need of volume.
If you've found yourself fervently wanting the celebrity-donned bob, fear not—there are different variations of the bob that may work for your own face shape.
"Different lengths of the bob and layers are what makes it unique to the individual," says Igbui. She recommends a longer diagonal forward bob with stacked layers that gives more length than the traditional bob, or disconnected sides similar to Victoria Beckham.
While round or square face shapes may not have many options when it comes to styles like the bob, learn to embrace your long hair. Need convincing that your locks are lovable? Just picture Posh with your tresses - she wouldn’t look half as fabulous if she were to exchange her do' for yours.
◊ October 2007
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