Seemingly every celebrity has been experimenting with fringe styles recently, from Kim K getting baby bangs to Ashley Tisdale cutting “French Girl” bangs, and even I feel the pull toward my kitchen scissors. But before you attempt to DIY some new bangs (please don’t), take a beat to figure out which fringe you’re actually interested in.
“First-time bang-cutters should always start with a professional,” says hairstylist and colorist Meri Kate O’Connor. Don’t worry if you’re not quite sure of what to ask, says O’Connor: “Just bring in photos of the looks you want and what you’re going for, and then talk to your stylist about what would work best for your texture and face shape.”
To help you out with the inspo, we rounded up our 25 favorite fringe haircuts for every hair type and texture, below. Get ready to screenshot and show your stylist.
“With thick hair, you have to be careful not to cut too much bang,” says O’Connor, “or you’ll accidentally create too much bulk that then needs to be thinned out.” Maya Hawke’s shaggy, face-framing fringe is a perfect example of how to balance thick hair using thin layers and razored ends.
Whether you’re working with 3c or 4c hair, you can cash in on the fringe trend without losing length by sectioning off a layer of curls before pulling your hair into a high puff or bun. After restyling and re-shaping your fringe, you can (carefully!) snip off any straggly or damaged ends that look out of place.
Everything old is new again—including Audrey Hepburn’s most iconic hairstyle: her short and choppy fringe. But instead of a direct copy-paste job from the ‘50s, hairstylists of today are modernizing the look by adding more layers for a piece-y finish, as seen here on Zoë Kravitz.
Sometimes, ultra-sleek bangs can feel a bit flat and meh, especially when paired with blunt ends. But when you combine blunt ends with choppy, angled sections—as seen here on Naomi Campbell—the unexpected geometry helps frame the face without feeling too perfect or juvenile.
Sheer, fluttery fringe—like the wispy bangs here on K-pop star Winter—is the quickest way to soften both your hairstyle and your entire overall vibe. Just know that the thinner the bangs, the more upkeep they can require. “Since bangs tend to sit on your face, they can collect facial oils and products faster than the rest of your hair,” says O’Connor.
If you find your wispy bangs to be too greasy, O’Connor recommends shampooing and rinsing just your fringe (yup, a bangs bath) each morning before re-styling.
Heavy, Blunt Fringe
Billie Eilish’s bangs are thick, shiny, straight…and totally not what she woke up with. “Bangs almost always need to be refreshed the next day,” says O’Connor. “For straight hairstyles, I suggest wetting the bangs and blow-drying them back into the style you want.”
Whereas curtain bangs get their name from, you know, literal window curtains, Birkin bangs (and bags) have a much more elevated origin story. Named after model Jane Birkin and her signature fringe, Birkin bangs have historically been a “blunt style that landed just above the brows with thinner ends," Castillo Bataille recently told InStyle. Today’s version has a bit more variety and wispiness, as seen above on Dakota Johnson, but the final effect is the same: soft and natural.
With the perfect amount of volume and softness, Barbie bangs are peak ‘90s elegance (triple points for the bleached money pieces). And thanks to their longer length, they can still be tucked behind your ears on days when you’re not feeling them.
Gemma Chan’s fringe is a mix of everything: baby bangs, choppy bangs, off-center bangs, and piece-y bangs. Really, a starburst of trends, all at once. If controlled chaos is your vibe, make sure to ask your stylist for asymmetrical lengths and layers.
Long Curly Fringe
If you’re working with wavy-curly bangs like Simone Ashley, you already know how lank and pulled-out they can get after a few hours—especially if you dare to play with them. So for touch-ups, wind sections haphazardly (messy is best) around a half-inch curling wand, like the BedHead CurliPops Clamp-Free Iron, in alternating directions before raking through the cooled curls with your fingers.
There’s a big difference between asymmetrical bangs that look like you attacked them with kitchen scissors (see: your childhood Barbie) and asymmetrical bangs that are purposely sharp, jagged, and uneven in all the right places (see: Emily Ratajkowski’s fringe). To avoid the former, go see a professional hairstylist instead of attempting them at home, says O’Connor.
Curve bangs—as seen here on Dua Lipa, along with the rest of Hollywood as of late—are a cross between curtain bangs and blunt bangs. As celebrity hairstylist Andrew Fitzsimons previously told InStyle, curve bangs are “designed to resemble the curves of your face, with longer layers on each side of your face with the center being shorter.” Yes, you should screenshot this one.
Riley Keough’s wavy bangs are soft, simple, and definitely not something you should attempt to DIY at home, no matter how easy they look. Waves and curls shrink as they dry, so you may end up cutting off more length than intended, says O’Connor.
Remember: the longer the bangs—like Karidja Toure’s graduated fringe here—the greasier they tend to look after a day of mingling with your skin oils, makeup and skincare products, and your fingers, says O’Connor. Her fix? Blasting them with dry shampoo (my favorite is the Amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo) after waking up to help keep the grease at bay throughout the day.
Finger waves, but make them 2023. Halle Berry’s dual-textured, side-parted fringe feels more modern than retro, thanks to the brushed-out volume toward the ends. To recreate, wrap the lower half of your hair around a curling iron in sections, let cool, then brush through with a wide-tooth comb.
Choose a thinner barrel for tighter curls and more brushed-out volume, or a wider barrel for bigger curls and less volume.
Whether you’re working with true curly bangs or your curls are just long enough to pineapple into a faux fringe like Yara Shahidi’s, the re-styling process will look the same: Mist your ends with water until saturated, then diffuse on low heat to redefine your curls. To finish, smooth a few drops of dry oil, like Verb Dry Ghost Oil, through your ends for piece-y shine.
Thick Curtain Bangs
Elizabeth Olsen’s iconic curtain bangs are a permanent staple in my thoughts. They’re thick without feeling heavy, and they’re choppy while still looking polished. If you know you want a fuller, thicker fringe, ask your stylist to start your bangs further back, especially if your hair is on the thinner side.
If this is your first time hearing of bottleneck bangs, know that they’re about to be everywhere this fall, as they already are on Jenna Ortega. “This hairstyle takes inspiration from the neck of a bottle, starting slim and short in the middle, curving longer around the eyes, and then the longest following the line of the cheekbone,” hairstylist Tom Smith (who coined the term “bottleneck bangs”) previously told InStyle.
If you know you’ll be wearing your bangs with a center part most of the time, make sure to tell your stylist so they can cut graduated layers that fall evenly to each side of your face. It’s not impossible to create a sleek, middle-part style on straight-across bangs (ahem, see: Taylor Swift’s one-night-only look), but it will require some major heat-styling and hairspray to get them to lay the way you want.
Scared of getting bangs for the first time? Take a page from the ‘90s, à la Vanessa Hudgens, with these face-framing tendril bangs. They’re the easiest non-fringe fringe you can try, making them the best style for anyone looking to tiptoe into the bangs trend.
Fine-Hair Curtain Bangs
If you’re working with finer hair and want layered curtain bangs like Kaley Cuoco’s, O’Connor says your stylist will often have to “give you more of a bang to keep them from looking too wispy and thin.” The end result? A soft and surprisingly full fringe, even on ultra-fine hair.
Stick-straight fringe can sometimes feel a little flat, which is where a well-placed “arch” comes in, like the off-center archway shape seen here in Venus Williams’ bangs. The sloping cut adds just enough intrigue and dimension, without feeling too modern.
Bowl-Cut Baby Bangs
Who knew bowl-cut fringe could look so chic? Matilda De Angelis, apparently, whose hairstylist took her baby bangs to the next level by giving them a subtle bowl-cut curve. The result: Fringe that perfectly hugs the angle of De Angelis’ forehead.
Nana Komatsu’s eye-skimming fringe is proof that the blunt, straight-across bangs you wore in elementary school can still look grown-up and aspirational. Just remember that to keep your bangs this length (i.e., not too long, but not too short), “you’ll be heading into the salon for more bang trims than you normally would,” says O’Connor. Think: every three to four weeks, easily.
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