How Do I Match My Face Shape and Haircut?

Susan Grindstaff

In order to match your face shape and haircut, it is probably a good idea to consult with a stylist or beautician. In most cases, these professionals have been trained to not only cut and style hair, but to analyze face shape and hair texture to be able to advise their clients. To make a good match between face shape and haircut, you might also try browsing hairstyle magazines or the Internet, where you will be able to view various types of cuts as they apply to different face shapes. In most cases, face shapes are defined as square, round, and oval. Other common face shapes include long faces and heart-shaped faces.

The shape of one's face should be taken into consideration when cutting bangs.
The shape of one's face should be taken into consideration when cutting bangs.

Matching face shape and haircut for those with long, narrow faces usually comes down to avoiding haircuts that add height, as these cuts often make the face look longer. In addition, extremely short or long cuts should also be avoided, as both typically draw attention to the length of the face. For long and narrow faces, chin length bobs tend to work well, regardless of whether your hair is straight or curly. Bangs are also a good idea because they tend to make the face look shorter.

A hairstylist cutting a short bob. An experienced stylist should be able to match a haircut to her client's face shape.
A hairstylist cutting a short bob. An experienced stylist should be able to match a haircut to her client's face shape.

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For a square or round face shape, it is usually recommended that you choose hairstyles that add height and create wisps that fall around the face. Hairstyles that part on the side, including side swept bangs are also recommended. When it comes to length, most professionals agree that longer styles help minimize width. If your hair is extremely curly, you might want to relax the curl or choose a layered cut. This will help minimize the added width the curls sometimes add to the jawline.

When matching face shape and haircut for those with heart-shaped faces, most stylists recommend haircuts that accent the eyes. This is most often done by choosing styles with long bangs that reach the eyebrow then gradually increase in length to join the sides of the hair. In most cases, those with heart-shaped faces can wear their hair in various lengths, both curly and straight.

If you have an oval-shaped face, you can wear most any type of hairstyle. You can choose cuts with or without bangs, regardless of whether your hair is straight or curly. Experts seem to agree that one of the most flattering hairstyles for those with oval faces is a layered cut that accents the cheekbones.

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Discussion Comments


The hair salon I go to has a book of hairstyles for your face shape. I always look through this while I'm waiting in the lobby.

I have a heart-shaped face, and I've seen some cute cuts in that book for my face. The best one involved bangs that were shorter in the middle and gradually got longer around the sides.

I went with this haircut, and I think it looks great with my face. Whoever put that book together knew what they were talking about!


I ignored the recommended haircuts for my face shape for many years. However, I knew that my long hair was dragging my already long face down even further.

The fact that I had gotten used to having long hair made it hard to go for a change. When I got a new job, though, I wanted to look good for work, so I went to a stylist and asked her what would look best for my face.

She recommended a style that fell above my shoulders and had plenty of lengths. The first length only came to the top of my cheekbone, which was a dramatic change for me.

However, it did wonders for my face. All I had to do was use velcro rollers on my hair in the morning to give it style and I would have a hairdo that lifted up my long face and made me look special.


@StarJo – I guess that if the cut works, there's no need to question it. I have always had to stick with round face shape haircuts, because my face is so obviously round and wide.

At least I don't have naturally curly hair. That would make it harder to lessen the effect of making my head look bigger.

I keep my straight hair about midway down my back. I have wispy layers around the front of my face that add interest.


Picking out haircuts by face shape was always confusing to me. I can't tell whether my face is oval, long and narrow, or heart-shaped, so I've never been able to pick the right haircut for my face.

I've just been sticking to what I like, which is hair that is layered and a few inches past my shoulders. Since this cut doesn't make my face look too long or too wide, I guess I'm doing something right!

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