Friday, August 12, 2011

Bangs 101

The big question I seem to get asked by my clients over and over again is whether or not they should get bangs. There are so many variables to understand before I can answer the question and so many things you should know about bangs before you should jump right into it. I want teach you all there is to know about bangs, so you will be able to decide for yourself, "should I get bangs?"

What are bangs?- In the hair world we actually call them "fringe." The word "bang" actually means to have sex with someone, seriously, but we have adapted it to also mean the hair hanging above our foreheads. However, I have never had anyone ask for fringe, so let's just call them bangs to be on the same page.
Emma Stone- Stephen Lovekin// Getty Images
When should you get bangs?- When a client comes in and wants a big change, but they don't want me to cut their length or color, I suggest bangs. Seriously, people come in wanting a change, but don't want to actually cut or color their hair. I think adding bangs to your look helps you feel totally different, but still allows you to have the familiarity of their length that so many people grow attached to.

But, and this is a BIG BUT, I don't think everyone is ready for bangs even if they say they want a change. I don't suggest you cutting bangs for the first time in the summer when it is hot out and you don't want hair around your face. Wait for either the fall or winter when it is cooler and you don't sweat as much. The point of a bang is to add framing to your face, if you don't like hair on your forehead, don't cut bangs.
Lilly Allen- Dave Hogan//Getty Images
What type of bang is best for me?- I like all types of lengths for a bang. I love a good strong front bang (think of a curtain), I also love a swept over bang that grazes on of the brows. I think the type of bang you get is really all determined on your hairline and your features. Your hairline basically is the end all in telling you what kind of bang you are going to get. If you have a really strong center cowlick, don't plan on having a bang, it probably wont work. If you have a really high forehead, a swept over bang wont be as easy as a front bang. If you have a really short forehead, bangs might swallow up your face and hide your eyes too much, so go for a longer sweeping bang. If you have a very dominate nose, a heavy bang might emphasize your nose, so you might want to think about a sweeping bang..... I could go on and on. These are just a few things to think about. I am sure your stylist could give you as much help and guidance as you would need.
Chelsea Hobbs- Valerie Macon//Getty Images
Are there any tricks in styling a bang?- I wash my hair as little as possible, like every other or every three days, but I wash my bangs EVERYDAY! I just wash it in the sink with my hair tied back. If I don't, they feel way too greasy and I can't stand it. I dry them in the direction I want them to lay (when my bangs were front bangs, I dried them down, when they were sweep bangs, I dried them over.) I NEVER use a round brush or a curling iron on my bangs when they were front bangs. THE MALL BANG IS DEAD! I mostly would only use a flat iron on my bangs to either smooth them out or bend the ends ever so slightly. As my bangs have grown, I like to flip them out a bit with my flat iron to give them a nice shape.
Swedish Singer Robyn- Robyn's Website
Does my face shape make a difference on what type of bangs I should have?- Yes, this goes along with the issues of hairlines and features. I have a round/square face and when my bangs are too short it only makes my face look rounder. I tend to have my bangs gradually go longer on the outer sides by the corner of my brows. This helps to frame my face and not make me look too full faced. Everyone is different, and it is hard to give a for sure answer to how things should work when I can't see you. There is always an exception to the rules. Just don't cut your own bangs. Let someone who knows what will work best on you do it for you.

Ok, I know this was WAY long. There is just so much to be said. I hope this sort of answers your questions. I have a post almost finished showing you how to work with your bangs as they grow out. I don't know why bangs are such a big deal, but women seriously lose sleep over bangs!! I swear it doesn't have to be traumatic. If you have any questions, let me know. Good luck.

Have a happy hair day!


Unknown said...

So my big questions is...what did you think of the bachelorette Ashley's bangs? I thought of her when you suggested you don't do the swept over bang with a long forehead.

Alex said...

So...what kind should I get??? Do you need a pic, Im so good at taking them of MYSELF! haha

Thanks SO much for that post.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure, but I think "bangs" has meant fringe for much longer than "bang" has meant "to have sex."