Finding the elusive perfect cut that works for you specifically ain’t always easy. Many of us go through decades of life before having that epiphany haircut that falls just so, that adds volume we never knew we had, and that air-dries just right. We’ve been wondering ourselves … is there a specific formula that we should all be heeding when we head into the salon? We asked Spoke & Weal founder and master hairstylist Jon Reyman about this, you know, for a friend.
Luckily, we live in the world of the modern woman. “The idea of the perfect haircut for your face has shifted a lot. Beauty standards have been revised,” Reyman leads with. “Previously, the ‘best face shape’ was considered oval, and cuts were customized to help create an oval face.” Imagine coming in for a cut these days and looking for a style that will shape your face, not a style that flatters your natural shape.
Reyman expresses that a true professional today celebrates diversity instead of trying to augment it for the sake of a societal expectation. “The golden ratio is not relevant anymore. The beauty industry has transformed from one standard and embraced the truth—beauty is in all shapes, sizes, colors, and forms.” However, there is a science to finding out what works for you. According to Reyman:
—Lobs to longer hair create more length, unless you offset this with angled layers or fringe.
—Shoulders to lower cheekbone will create width in the face.
—As you crop up past the cheekbone, this will create more length. Add windswept fringe for more width.
To elaborate, “Longer hair will draw eyes down and add more length to the face. If you wish to elongate your face, keep your hair longer. However, this can be offset by layering or fringe, so you can balance a long haircut with layering techniques at the cheekbone or fringe at the brow line to create more width, or to open your face up a bit if you want long hair and do not want to accentuate length in your face.” Essentially, don’t work against your shape.
If you have a narrow, longer face shape, lobs and bobs are a trusty look for you. “If you want to create more width or roundness in your face, go for a cut between the shoulders and the chin. Add fringe to further accentuate the width.”
On shorter styles, the concept is not so black and white. Reyman explains, “Once you start to go shorter than the cheekbone and create a short haircut or pixie, this will elongate the face again. The short hair will add more volume at the top of the head and parietal ridge. A cropped, short cut that adds volume at the top of your head will create length through the face. Offset this by adding fringe to create more width.”
Reyman also mentions a quick tip to shift the way you style your hair: moving the part. The way you part your hair will create different effects for your face shape. A center part will create more length through the face, while a side part will create more width. So before you consider chopping, try mixing things up. It’s easy to fall back on the part you’ve always done, so give a new section of your scalp its time to shine and see what it does for your overall look.