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Choosing a hairstyle to suit your face shape can be difficult

This week’s blog post has been written by expert hairdresser, make-up artist and skincare consultant Jane Mott. For more hair and beauty tips please visit her website.  

A good hairdresser will instinctively know what style will suit your face shape, but do you?

A little preparation before you head into the salon will really help.

Though the oval face shape was once considered the desired shape with edgier fashion on the catwalks and in the high street this is no longer true. Many catwalk models have edgier  ‘square-shaped’ face.

Accentuate or Soften?

Once you’ve identified your face shape the question to ask yourself is…

Do you want to embrace and enhance your face shape or use your hairstyle to soften your face shape?

Look at your facial features…do you love your cheekbones, your eyes or your lips?

Do you want your hair style to draw attention to or away from one of your facial features?

For instance a fringe can accentuate your eyes, while hair off your forehead can balance your nose.

Know your face shape

Pull you hair back off you face and look into a mirror.

Ask yourself

  1. Is the length of my face greater than the width or about the same?
  2. Which is the widest part of my face? Forehead, cheekbones or jawline?
  3. Is my jawline angular or rounded?

Take an eyeliner or lip liner and draw dots onto the mirror to map the outline of your face. Now join the dots…what’s the dominant shape?

Choosing a hairstyle

Softer hair will create roundness to your features, softening angles.

But if you have a soft round face shape and want to create more angular look, try styles with some height on top and consider longer styles with shaggy layers as shaggy layers will create a more rectangular shape.

Generally speaking,

  • Wide faces need lengthening – Long hair will add length to you face. Soften the edges of a square shaped face by directing soft wavy fringe down over your temples. Long hair should fall to, or past shoulders. For a short style, keep hair style round and soft with height at the crown.
  • Long faces need shortening  – Fringes on or at eyebrow level will shorten your face
  • Round faces need narrowing – keep the sides sleek and close to your face, tuck you hair behind your ears, create height on top.
  • Disguise a long forehead with a thick blunt-cut fringe – you’ll be surprised how feminine it makes you look. Steer clear of a fringe if you have a small forehead – it will just emphasise the length of the rest of your face.

Enhance with colour

  • Square – Lightening hair all around the face will soften a square face
  • Long – Adding highlights to hair at the side of the face will make your face appear shorter, combined with keeping the forehead area darker.
  • Heart – Highlight hair above the ears to widen your face and low light above.
  •  Round – Lighter highlights at the top of the head to create the illusion of lustrous length, blended with slightly darker tones or low-lights at the side of the face.

When you book your next hair appointment ask for a style consultation with the stylist. Arrive early to look through their stylebooks – do some research yourself either online or buy a hair magazine from the newsstand. I also find looking through clothes catalogues at the models hair helpful.

By Jane Mott. Hairdresser, make-up artist and skincare consultant. For more hair and beauty tips please visit

I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments on this. If you have any questions you’d like me to answer personally please contact me.  And if you enjoyed this article then please take a moment to share it via social media.

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