When you walk out of the salon with the right haircut, you feel like a million dollars. The cut flatters your shape, works with your natural texture and growth patterns, looks full and healthy, and is stylish and up-to-date. Reactions to the wrong haircut can range from just feeling ho-hum about your hair to being devastated by your look. That’s why having an experienced stylist help you bring your hair goals to life is so important.
What does my stylist consider when helping me choose a style?
As stylists, we look at five things when helping clients select flattering styles that will work great for them: face shape, natural hair texture, condition of the hair, growth patterns, and how much time the client wants to spend on their hair.
How does texture impact a cut?
If you are one of the lucky ones to have thick hair with some natural wave, you can pull off almost any haircut with minimal styling effort. Curly hair can easily get a mushroom appearance or look weighed-down on top if it is cut incorrectly. Straight thin hair is well-suited for classic styles that look good sleek and smooth. Straight hair that is coarse is the least versatile because it can be difficult to style the hair in different ways.
What do you mean by growth patterns?
Does your hair fall forward into your face, have a widow’s peak, grow backwards, or have cowlicks in it? If so, then you know what we mean when we talk about your hair’s growth pattern. It refers to how your hair grows out of your head. While there are things you can do to style your hair against the growth patterns, and even some tricks you can use to “train” your hair to grow different ways, a flattering low-maintenance hairstyle is going to work with your natural growth patterns, not against them.
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How does the hair’s condition impact a cut?
No matter how great a haircut is, if the hair left behind is full of damage and split-ends, it just is not going to look good. There are things we can do to give your hair a healthier appearance, like keratin treatments or even the smart use of haircolor, but at some point extremely damaged hair needs to come off your head if you want a great hairstyle.
Why is face shape important?
Your haircut is going to play up certain areas and features on your face. Your face shape helps determine which features and areas you want to highlight to get the most flattering look. There are seven basic face shapes: oval, square, round, heart, triangle, oblong, and diamond.
Oval faces are longer than they are wide, with the forehead being the widest of all. Oval face shapes can wear most haircuts, but long-layers, side-swept pixies, bobs and full fringe are all great looks on ovals.
Square face shapes are approximately the same length and width with a strong jaw and little curve at the chin. Traditionally, the most flattering cuts for square shapes have been designed to soften the jawline; think wavy shags, side-swept bangs, or fringe-y long layers.
Round face shapes are also about the same length and width, without sharp angles or cheekbones, and the cheeks are the widest part of the face. The best haircuts for round faces lengthen the face, so long straight hair, long waves, swoopy bangs, or even shaggy bobs look great.
Heart shaped faces have pointed chins with a wider forehead and slimmer chin. Because the forehead is larger, these face shapes can carry off blunt bangs. Great looks include chin length bobs and wavy layers.
Oblong faces are a little longer than they are wide, but the forehead, cheeks, and jaw are roughly the same width. Like square faces, the most flattering cuts soften some of the edges. Fringe and long layers are sure to flatter.
Diamond shaped faces are widest at the cheeks and known for high cheekbones, pointy chins, and narrow foreheads. We think of this look as elfin. The most flattering cuts for this face shape accentuate those cheekbones. They can wear anything from short cropped styles to face-framing layers.
Triangle shaped faces feature pointy chins and jaws that are wider than your forehead. The goal in your cut is to narrow the look of your jaw and visually widen the look of your forehead. Layers are great for this face shape, but they have to hit at the right spots.
Why does my styling routine matter?
Almost anyone can wear almost any haircut, if a good stylist gives the cut and tweaks for your face shape and texture. However, some styles are going to be more work than others. Being honest and realistic about the time you want to spend on your hair each day can help me give you a haircut that looks great when we spin you around in the stylist’s chair and also when you style it yourself, at home.
Don’t worry if this all seems a little complicated; that’s why you go to a stylist. You come to us with the look you want for your hair and we work with you to give you the look you want in a way that flatters you and makes you look and feel fabulous.