What's your face shape?

Here's how to find the hair styles that work best for you. Styles should accentuate your best facial features while minimizing your less-than-best features.

To find your face shape:

  1. Pull hair back and secure so hair is totally off the face.
  2. Stand 12' from a mirror and look straight into it. Or, use a picture of yourself facing straight into the camera with your hairline showing.
  3. Outline your face with a marker on the mirror, with drawing paper or on the photo itself.
  4. Now look at your face shape in the mirror or the photo drawing. At first there may appear to be more than one shape. Though your face may not be an exact duplicate of any single shape, it will more closely resemble one shape over all other shapes shown. Pick the shape most closely resembling your own.

Oval-Shaped Face

Oval is considered by many to be the loveliest and most versatile face shape since nearly every style looks sensational on this face with perfect symmetry. Hair pulled back shows off the oval face the most. In long styles, a great classic look is a center or side part with hair touching shoulders. The short-layered looks with curls and a close extended nape focus on this oval.

Round-Shaped Face

This shape is round at the cheeks and a has a circular form.There is more of the face near the ears and gradually less curving upward and downward. The goal: to slim your face. Hair below the chin line should be worn with a face-lengthening center part; for hair above chin line, wear an off-center part to interrupt the roundness. Height at the crown and a bare forehead lengthen and slim the face. It's best to avoid short and sleeked-back hairstyles. In short-angled styles, you are best seen with hair brushed away from the face, building extra crown height to narrow the roundness of your features. Though bangs shorten the face, you can wear curly, tousled side bangs. Always avoid straight-falling bangs. Wear longer styles closer to the face to give length. Decrease the volume at the sides and ear area. Increase height and length should be beyond the chin or just above it. A side part works well. Keeping hair off the face at the cheek area is also recommended.

Square Face

This face is characterized by an angular jaw and square brow, with jaw and brow being nearly the same width. The goal: soften the sharp angle of jawline and minimize squared-off brow. Hairstyles that emphasize the cheekbones mid-line of the face are most flattering. Bangs and waves at the temple also soften the square. Wear your best styles with hair swinging forward onto the face to reduce the angles. Hair length is best about 1-1/2' below the chin, or extending to shoulder length to reduce and soften the squareness of your jaw. Hair worn on the forehead is always perfect for you, as long as it is wispy or fringed. Never wear straight bangs. Hair turned under at the bottom also will narrow the width of the jaw. Styles in loose curls and waves add extra dimension to the square face. Styles that round out your hair can decrease the appearance of a square face shape. Adding curl, angled or wispy bangs, and a few wisps on the cheek area will all help. A cut that allows for some height i also a good idea. Wear a side part as opposed to a center part. Avoid straight bangs and hanging hair.

Triangular-Shaped Face

This shape has a wide chin and a narrow forehead. The goal: narrow the chin and widen the forehead. Wear your hair wide and full at the top of the head and temples, brushed away from the face and up toward the ear to widen forehead; from the ear, angle hair forward toward the chin to soften and narrow a strong jaw. Do not wear styles that are full at the jawline however.Your best hair length: chin length or longer. Decrease volume in the crown and at the side, ear areas. Adding curl and fullness to the chin area and just above the temples can help round out the look.

Heart-Shaped Face

This is an upside down triangle face. There is very little of your face at the jaw line, much more at the eye line, cheek bones and even more at the brow line. The goal: diminish forehead width and create a wider, fuller jaw effect.If you want bangs, wear them full and curly if possible. Wear a side part with soft three-quarter bangs swept over one side to balance your forehead width. The styles should be fuller at the top than at the jaw line. Upswept at the sides and off the forehead further emphasize your feminine appeal . A medium length to mid-neck is your best look. Fullness at the bottom, with hair directed forward onto the cheeks gives you the appearance of a wide chin. Curls or loose waves, shaped from the ears down, add width and fullness to your chin. Decrease volume in the crown and at the side, ear areas. Adding curl and fullness to the chin area can help round out the look. Wisps on the jaw area or bangs can help give a wider rounder appearance. Avoid styles that mirror the heart shape.

Oblong face

This shape is long and thin, often with a chin that tends to look pointed. There is very little difference in width between the top, middle or bottom of your face but it is more rounded than the square face.Hairstyles should add width and fullness to the sides of the face and around the eyes, cheekbones and ears. This shape benefits from a low side part, with a sweep of hair brushed across the forehead and secured with a comb. The look of volume with an asymmetric flow of hair to one side widens your face and reduces length. Straight-falling bangs or bangs blended with the sides of your hair shorten the overall face length. Your best hair length reaches to the middle of the neck. Favor volume with curly or wavy styles that are very becoming, giving you the illusion of balanced width.

Clothing tip: Avoid long v-necked and vertical lines at the neckline. Use high necklines to shorten the length of the face.

Makeup tip: To shorten the face a bit,. use darker foundation, powder or blusher to darken the chin.