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A parting can make all the difference, especially when you’ve been steadily rocking the same one for years. Trust us—the compliments pour in when you switch it. We’ve all had our fair share of parting nightmares, though, like when you decide to go from a side parting to a middle part and a photograph suggests it wasn’t the most flattering idea.
These mishaps are usually down to your face shape. So if you have a good idea of what your face shape is but aren’t quite sure what hairstyles suit you, we sat down with celebrity hairstylist Mika Fowler to ask for her advice.
Meet the Expert
Turns out, a simple update to your part can elongate your features, bring out your cheekbones, soften sharp angles, and more. We’re reaching for our combs as we type.
You get the best of both worlds if you have a round shape. “The ideal part line is down the middle or a deep side part,” Fowler says. “Both of these parts will give the illusion of length and create symmetry around your face.”
When deciding what cut to go for, Fowler warns against adding too many layers to your hairstyle. “Add just enough if you wish to elongate the face.” Noted.
If you’ve been dying to go for the chop or experiment with updos, you’re in luck: “Short hairstyles are great for this face shape,” Fowler advises.
There’s just something about side partings that adds instant glamour—even if you haven’t washed your hair for a while. Fowler recommends going for a soft, side-swept part with a fringe which will add softness to square-faced ladies.
But don’t go too far, he says. “You don’t want to make the part too deep—this will accentuate the angles of a square face,” Fowler notes.
Keep everything balanced by showing just enough skin on your forehead and allow your fringe to offset an angled jawline.
When any parting suits you, it would be rude not to switch up your style on a regular basis. Fowler says the ideal face shape for any part is the oval-shaped face.
If you’ve got curly hair and this face shape, you can use a parting to play around with volume and height.
We really never know how Meghan Markle will have her hair parted. If you have an oval-shaped face, follow her lead and play around with your part. It’s a great way to get out of a hair rut.
A top tip from Fowler: A deep side part will break up the chin line, which can be pointy if you have a heart-shaped face. “You want to soften your cheekbones as well and a deep side part will brush softly against your face to give this illusion.”
If your hair naturally parts down the middle, create a side part by parting your hair while it’s wet; then applying a gel to hold the new part in place. Use a fine-toothed comb to direct your hair in the new direction as you blow-dry.
Victoria Beckham most definitely knows how to work her angles. “A side part really complements this shape’s strong cheekbones and bone structure,” Fowler says.
Shorter hairstyles work best for this look since diamond-shaped faces have smaller foreheads—anything too long and dramatic will overshadow you.
Blow-dry your hair to the side with a round brush, lifting and curling as your go for major volume at the roots.
There’s something so effortless about a middle parting. If you have an oblong face, Fowler suggests a middle parting to add the illusion of roundness.
“A fringe will also work very well for this look because they help shorten the long face shape,” Fowler adds.
Headed to the salon? Fowler recommends asking for a haircut with layers to bring out your cheekbones and strong jawline.