How to choose the right cut for your face shape

Determine the perfect haircut for your face shape

Nicole Vince
17 July 2017
Stylist cutting hair on client with wet hair and long brown hair

We often set our sights on our next hairstyle based on not much more than what we've seen on our social media feeds and various inspirational magazine pages. However, if you’ve ever walked out of the salon scratching your head as to why the ‘do you’ve dreamed of for so long doesn’t look quite as good as you’d hoped, it could be because it’s not adapted to your face shape. Indeed, your profile plays a much bigger role in the success of your hairstyle than you might think, so it’s necessary to personalise our hair decisions!

Vienna-born Bertram K, founder of Bertram K salons, L’Oréal Professionnel international portfolio artist and coiffeur of hair icons such as Kate Moss, Nadja Auermann and Alec Wek, knows just how important our visages are to our haircuts. Read on to discover the factors you should be contemplating for your next chop.

Think about balancing your silhouette when you go to the salon – not just the haircut

Our hair represents a huge building block of our profile, which can be manipulated by savvy stylists to create the illusion of a face shape that we do not otherwise have. “Clients should think of their overall desired silhouette when they go to the salon, and that silhouette is usually oval. Everything about the haircut should therefore work towards achieving an oval face shape,” Bertram K divulges. “At the moment, it’s all about having high cheekbones, big eyes and full lips, and the right haircut can help to create the illusion of this look through techniques that texturise and flatten.”

The next time you’re in need of a trim, reflect on these determinants rather than solely what has struck your fancy. It is bound to suit you infinitely more, meaning that you (and your stylist) are guaranteed to walk away much more satisfied!

Nicole Vince Hair journalist

It's all about volume  either adding, or taking it away

One of the chief factors to be considered to create the oval face shape is volume. If you have a round face, Bertram K advises to deplete volume to slim its appearance. Likewise, if your face is thin in nature, the goal is to add body to your locks. “Graduation adds volume, whereas layers diminish it. You will also need more angles to create a shape if you have a more circular face, but rounder cuts if your face is slimmer,” explains the hair stylist. “Products are also important – if extra volume is necessary to obtain an oval shape, then it is essential to use texturising products, such as Redken Fashion Waves 07 Sea-Salt Spray, to accompany the cut.”

Body shape is just as important as face shape

“Body shape is just as important as face shape when it comes to determining the optimal haircut,” Bertram K reveals. “Make the client stand to survey the whole proportion of the body, and then decide if you need to add or remove volume to coordinate with the bigger picture. For example, if you are short, it is not advised to opt for a very long hairstyle, as it will make you look much shorter – and vice versa.”

Consider the nature of your hair

As well as face and body shape, the thickness and length of your tresses also determine your strategy on the road to oval. Bertram K clarifies that, “The more curly and thick your hair is, the more angles you will need to cut in, in order to create the desired shape. Conversely, the thinner the hair, the fewer angles you will require, as you want to make it look fuller.”  Top tip: if your tresses are particularly thick and curly, use Mizani Supreme Oil Satin Crème Mask, whose nourishing concoction of avocado, jojoba and apricot oils will make your locks much more sleek, supple and manageable.

When a cut is not enough, add colour

“Always start with a cut, but if it hasn’t quite been enough to reach your desired shape, you can always turn to hair contouring,” Bertram K points out. “Carefully placed light and dark sections can brighten the face and give the illusion of a different shape.” For example, if your face is long, it is suggested to darken your roots and lighten the mid-bottom section, in order to elongate the face widthwise. Similarly, if your face is triangular, you can darken your roots and brighten up the tips, so as to push the volume down your profile and balance out the triangular jaw. If you do opt for the contouring technique, then make sure to look after your tailored highlights with L’Oréal Professionnel’s Lumino Contrast range by Serie Expert, which helps to brighten and enhance the appearance of multi-dimensional tones in coloured hair.

The next time you’re in need of a trim, reflect on these determinants rather than solely what has struck your fancy. It is bound to suit you infinitely more, meaning that you (and your stylist) are guaranteed to walk away much more satisfied!

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