How to decide on the best haircut in your face form
Haircuts, like your clothes, are not one size fits all. But unlike your clothes, you can't take off a dung haircut after a day of abuse by your coworkers.
Because of this, you should know which styles will best suit your face shape before you step under the barber's scissors. After all, an extra inch here or a bit of facial hair can make all the difference.
What face shape am I?
But how can you actually tell what shape your face is? It's easy. First, arm yourself with a flexible measuring tape. Then take and record the following measurements for each one.
- Forehead: Measure across your face from the tip of one eyebrow arch to the tip of the opposite arch.
- Cheekbones: Measure across your cheekbones, starting and ending at the most pointed point below the outer corner of your eye.
- Jaw section: Measure from the tip of your chin to below your ear where your jaw is sloping up. Multiply that number by two to get your jaw line measurement.
- Face length: Measure from the center of your hairline to the tip of your chin.
When you've done these measurements, write down the largest of the four and compare it to the seven main profiles to see where your face falls.
- Oval: The length of the face is greater than the width of the cheekbones and the forehead is greater than the jaw. The jaw angle is rounded rather than sharp.
- Rectangle: The length of the face is the greatest measure. The forehead, cheekbones and jaw are similar in size.
- Triangular: The jaw line is larger than the cheekbones, which are larger than the forehead.
- Round: The cheekbones and face length are of similar measurement. They are larger than the forehead and jaw, which are also of similar size. The angle of the jaw is soft and much less defined.
- Heart: The forehead measures more than the cheekbones and jaw. The chin is pointed.
- Square: All measurements are pretty similar. The jaw angle is more sharp than rounded.
- Diamond: The length of the face is the greatest. Then in descending order: cheekbones, forehead and smallest is jaw. The chin is pointed.
How to choose the right haircut for your face shape
Quick jump: Oval | Square | Rectangle | Round | Diamond | Heart | triangle
Haircuts for oval faces
An oval considered the genetic jackpot for women may not be the alpha face shape for men, but it is a good canvas to experiment with. Symmetrical and well proportioned, an oval face shape will suit just about any hairstyle, so – lucky you – the choice is yours.
That said, there are a few minor caveats to ensure that you optimize your ovality. “The trick with an oval face is to carry the hair off your forehead to create a certain volume and angle,” says Aveda master hairdresser Stelios Nicolaou. "The most suitable style is a classic short back and sides and a little longer at the top with a side-swept part."
You'll also want to avoid a forward edge. "Too much heaviness on the forehead softens the features and increases the roundness of the face," says the famous hairdresser Jamie Stevens.
And don't hesitate to drop your beard, says Ruffian's creative director Denis Robinson. "In this case, you don't need facial hair to fill in disproportionate gaps. So feel free to shave yourself clean."
Haircuts for Square Faces
Considered the male ideal, a square face shape is characterized by a razor-sharp jaw, even proportions, and an overall chiseled appearance. Grrr.
Like the oval, it's a great base for most styles and versatile enough to work with both extremely short and longer hairstyles – from buzz cuts to French plants to quiffs. Remember, the shorter you go, the more you look like you've just been drafted. Not that this won't do you any good.
“Classic, clean haircuts complement a square shape best – think of tight blends, side partings, and short layers,” says Stevens. Some light stubble add welcome texture to the sharpness of your jaw without blurring the line.
Haircuts for rectangular faces
For the longest face shape, a rectangular face falls somewhere between an oval and a square, but requires a subtly tweaked hairstyle to ensure that the face doesn't appear any longer than it is.
"Since a rectangular face looks longer, it is important not to cut the sides too short if the length is on top, as this would only emphasize the length of the face," explains Nicolaou. "Try a well-proportioned style where the sides aren't too short or too much length on top."
Follow this advice and try a style where the hair falls to the side and / or over the forehead to add width and ensure your face doesn't appear narrower than it is.
Finally, never combine it with a beard from the duck dynasty, says Robinson. "A full beard only lengthens the face. Instead, try facial hair that ranges in length from stubble to short beards to fill in any gaps."
Haircuts for round faces
Round with a rounded chin and no obvious lines or angles, a round face shape benefits from a haircut that gives it some definition.
"When you have a round face shape, think square," says Stevens. “Since round faces have few natural angles, you have to create the illusion of structure with your hair. A style with a height on the top that is snug on the sides, like a pompadour or flat top, blends in well with the structure, as does the front fringe. "
“Square corners in the high recession area of your hair will sharpen any soft edges,” adds Robinson. "A square full beard also helps thin the chin area, which gives the impression of a more chiseled jaw."
Haircuts for diamond faces
The diamond is tight on the chin and forehead, wide on the cheeks and one of the rarer face shapes. Because of this, it has some special requirements to make sure it looks like its namesake.
"Hairstyles that make the forehead and chin area wider are the best choices," says Stevens. "Fringes work well for adding texture to the forehead, while longer styles that can be tucked behind the ears are great at accentuating the bone structure of a diamond shape."
Don't take the sides too short, though – given the width of the cheekbones, a hairstyle that is extra short on the sides will only make your ears look bigger.
Softer lines and layers work better for this face shape and soften its natural angles. Try a side sweep or a deep side parting and consider creating a 5 o'clock shadow if you want to add a little extra size to a narrower chin.
Haircuts for Heart Shaped Faces
The (rather rare) heart face shape is wide at the temples and hairline and gradually narrows to a point on the chin. It benefits from some optical illusions to make it appear better proportioned.
"Avoid cuts that are very tight as they emphasize the tightness of the chin and the width of the forehead," says Stevens. "A medium-length, swept look is the safest bet." Medium-length and long hairstyles, kept reasonably thin and light, soften the strong forehead of the heart shape.
In this case too, facial hair plays an important role as it gives a narrow chin and jaw the much-needed bulk, says Robinson. "As with the diamond face shape, a beard helps a heart shape gain fullness in the lower, narrower half of the head."
Haircuts for triangular faces
A triangular face requires the opposite treatment of a heart shape due to its narrow forehead and wide jaw.
"A style with volume is king with this one," says Stevens. "Go for longer, nose-length haircuts with fuller sides that add depth."
As for the beard, you look best with light stubble. However, given the importance of the jaw in this case, it is best to steer clean-shaven. Grab the razor, guys.