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LONG AND SIDE-SWEPT
These sleek bangs are flattering for every face shape. “This look is sexy and mysterious,” says Garren of the Garren New York salon. Ask your stylist to cut long bangs at an angle, so they blend in with the rest of your hair. If you can get away with it, tuck your bangs behind one ear and let them air-dry. Otherwise, comb styling cream through wet bangs (or gel, if you have curly hair). Pop a nozzle attachment on your blow-dryer, and direct the airflow straight down from the roots. Bonus: The style works on all face shapes, hair textures, and lengths.
LONG AND THICK
On long, straight cuts, blunt bangs have a cool ’60s, Penelope Tree vibe. This heavy brow-skimming fringe suits thick hair (fine hair gets wispy) and makes oval faces seem thinner. Avoid this cut if you have strong cowlicks at the crown; they can cause unwanted separation in your bangs. To re-create Olivia Wilde’s look, prep wet bangs with styling cream and blow-dry with a vent brush, making crisscross motions to eliminate your natural part. Finish by quickly sweeping a flatiron over the hair in an arc, which helps the ends lay flat against the forehead. “It makes the bangs look more polished,” Garren says. If bangs begin to separate later in the day, mist a dry shampoo at the roots and massage through bangs with your fingertips.
LONG, FACE-FRAMING BANGS
“Bangs that hit right at the corners of your eyes highlight the cheekbones,” says Garren. That’s especially flattering to oval and round faces. Use a small comb, like the T3 Carbon Comb, to pull bangs away from the face while blow-drying, creating volume. Then part them down the center and smooth a flatiron over the ends. Since this look draws attention to the eyes, play them up with black liquid liner.
LONG, PIECEY BANGS
Alexa Chung’s bangs are quirky and cool—not prim and proper. “The separation in the middle adds a little imperfection to the style,” Garren says, “It gives off a rocker vibe.” Roughly blow-dry the hair without a nozzle attachment until the hair is about halfway dry. Then run a brush through the bangs before letting them air-dry the rest of the way. “These bangs work on all face shapes as long as you mess them up with your fingers to give them some separation,” says Garren. Tame flyaways with a dab of wax (such as Sebastian Professional Shine Crafter
), and set with hair spray (Garren likes L’Oréal Elnett
Mini bangs make a pixie cut, like Ginnifer Goodwin’s, appear “more ingénue and gamine,” says Garren. They also slim a round face and make a small forehead appear longer. Ask your stylist to cut blunt bangs two inches back from your brows, he says. Let them air-dry, and then use a pea-size amount of pomade to create a piecey texture and control flyways. (Garren likes Aveda Brilliant Anti-Humectant Pomade.
) “Push bangs to the side,” he says. “It makes them look cooler.”
“This is a great way to add fringe without the commitment of actually cutting your hair,” Garren says. For faux bangs that look natural (like Kim Kardashian’s), find a hairpiece that matches your hair color and texture. Garren recommends getting the bangs custom colored and cut by your stylist, but bangs with longer pieces at the sides easily mix into hair, making fake fringe look real. Part your own hair down the middle, tease the roots, and mist them with hair spray before clipping in the piece about an inch or two back from the hairline. Finish by brushing your real hair over the piece to blend the bangs with the rest of the hair. Expert tip: Try clip-ins if you’re considering getting bangs—it’s a great way to test out the look temporarily. The pros rely on human hairpieces, like Helena Collection.