A short list of round things that are undeniably lovely: the sun, budding flowers just before they bloom, birthday cakes with candles on top, and (of course) you. Round-faced girls don’t get the credit they deserve for truly unique looks, the kind that make average girls into supermodels.
Of course, the situation gets a little more complicated when it comes to hair. It’s hard to know which how to find good hairstyles—round faces aren’t always the ones advertised on stylist Instagrams or salon ads.
Making the right hair decision all comes down to your understanding of proportions, according to Shu Uemura Art of Hair senior artist Jasmine Galazka. She’s got a magic bag of styling tricks that help any round-faced lady create the illusion of a face that’s narrower.
Put your fate (and face) in these well-trained hands, and you’ll come away with life-changing hair styling tricks.
How to get a flattering haircut for a round face
Before you ever open those salon doors, think about your dream haircut as a visual game. Your face is a circle, so you’ll want a long, rectangular shape to create the illusion of a slimmer profile. According to Galazka, the only real rule of cutting hair for round faces is never, ever going for a bob. Any look that goes past your jawline is ideal because it will visually narrow the shape of your face.
Lucky for you, Galazka has plenty of ideas about cuts that do look flattering. For starters, any cut you get should focus on volume at the crown and avoid it throughout the side sections of your hair.
If you’re seeing a new hair stylist, be sure to take small hair steps to avoid making a huge mistake. Galazka advises you “play it safe.” Remember: You can always shorten long hair, but it’s impossible to undo too-short layers.
“It’s your first date together—you never want to do anything out of the ordinary. Minimal changes sometimes are most impactful,” Galazka says.
Hair is a process, so don’t feel discouraged if your first cut doesn’t turn you into a mega-babe. Keep working with your stylist, and you’ll get there.
Of all the cut requests Galazka gets most frequently, the sleek lob is the newest. This style is center or side-parted, falling in blow-dried curtains around either side of the face. If it seems familiar, that’s because every celebrity you love has traded their beachy waves for it.
“This style really flatters someone with a round face because it helps to elongate the structure of the face,” Galazka tells us.
To master this look, ask your hairstylist for a blunt cut that ends just below the collarbones. The cut is prettiest when it’s “perfectly blown out,” according to Galazka, so be sure not to skimp on the blow-drying portion of your appointment.
To finish, ask for shine spray and a little frizz-fighting protection.
If you haven’t heard about the shag yet, be prepared for the influx of trend pieces about the feathery look. The ‘70s-inspired cut is about to hit the mainstream in a big way. If you’re a round-faced lady, that’s very good news.
Unlike more traditional cuts, the shag focuses on building height at the top of the head and feathering out the ends in soft layers. Instead of triangle hair, you’ll end up with the exact proportions Galazka favors.
“When styling, avoid volume on the sides of the face but rather create height in the crown area,” she explains. “The height on top will make your face appear longer. “
Did we mention Galazka is something of a magician when it comes to optical illusions?
In some circles of friends, even the very mention of bangs sends a cold shiver down every spine. If you’ve had a bad set of bangs, you know why—they’re oily, unmanageable, and always need touch-ups.
Contrary to popular belief, bangs don’t have to be a nightmare. When they’re cut well, they add visual interest to round faces. If you’re dealing with thin, impossible-to-style hair, bangs may be the right choice for you.
“Adding a soft fringe will break up the face and also make the hair appear thicker,” Galazka explains. “I also love adding a root concealer spray for that added depth at the root.”
Ask your stylist for gentle bends in the hair and a little volume spray at the crown to complete your new look.
If preserving length is the name of the game, then choose a hairstyle that sits below the shoulders. As with Galazka’s other favorite styles, this length will create the illusion of a longer, thinner face.
Ask your stylist for subtle long layers, the kind that are more about movement than volume. You’ll want to steer clear of anything that creates bulk on either side of your face. In keeping with the current trends, ask for beachy waves that are closer to “air dried” than “swimsuit model on location.” You’ll want those curls to look natural.
“Any of the longer styles that are popular right now are also great for round faces,” Galazka agrees, adding that length is pretty much the solution to every round-faced girl’s woes.
Remember: When it comes to styling the look, opt for lift at the crown. The higher the hair, the closer to an elongated face shape. Is that how the saying goes?
Sure, this mega-popular blowout style isn’t technically a haircut. But, used in conjunction with any of the above styles, the technique can add an extra-flattering finish to your look. According to Galazka, it’s all about adding a sleek finish around the face.
“Smooth and sleek...works on any length hair when you have a round face,” she explains.
By straightening out the sides while boosting volume at the top of the head, your hair stylist will visually slim down your face shape. Add bouncy curls at the ends, and you’re ready for a night on the town.
There’s no need to hide a round face behind a curtain of hair. In fact, we’d even say you should be proud of it.
Working with a round face shape means focusing on cuts that visually even out the width of your face. We love the way a wavy lob can create the illusion of a rectangular face by redistributing the weight of your mane.
When it comes to hair, we nearly always recommend doing less. If you have some natural body to your mane, pick up a product like Redken’s No Blow Dry Hair Cream. A pea sized amount and a good scrunching will leave you with gorgeous texture.
Bringing the eye up can be a great way to manage a round face while still having fun with your look. For festival season or a day in the sun, part your hair down the middle and twist your lengths up into two matching buns.
You don’t have to go to the beach to wear the look of salty, beautiful waves. Use a larger curling iron to achieve these loose spirals, twisting each section before you wrap it around the barrel. Once your section is totally heated through, give it a gentle tug to stretch out the ringlet.
If you own extensions, take them out to play with this dramatic oversize braid. The length will bring the eye down, while the loose finish will create a romantic effect that flatters your round face.
Double Dutch Buns
Chignons and low buns are a smart choice for women with round faces because they bring the eye down and create the illusion of a perfect rectangle. For an easy summer hairstyle, turn two Dutch braids into loose, voluminous buns.
If you’re working with thick, voluminous hair, wrangling it before it becomes a triangle can be difficult. We love the sexiness of curtain bangs, which gently frame the face and add structure to its round shape.
Every stylist you know is itching to tell you about the shag cut, a 1970s hero that made its triumphant return to popularity over the course of the past year. By enhancing volume at the crown, your stylist should be able to beautifully frame your round face.
The temptation to go short can be overwhelming for women with round faces, but we encourage you to consider the opposite approach: dramatic length. Artful braiding techniques like this Fulani-inspired style can enhance the look of your round face.
Cropped And Curly
Curly hair is one of the most difficult textures to get right, so make sure you’re seeing a pro who has plenty of experience working with ringlets. With a little bit of skill, he or she should be able to crop your ‘do into a geometric shape that evens out your round complexion.
Fantasy Hair Color
While many people with round faces struggle to find the right cut for their face, there is one element that’s guaranteed to look beautiful: fantasy hair. Whether you choose a lemon yellow or mermaid blue, nothing can make you fall back in love with your look like a new hair color.
Vibrant Buzz Cut
Instead of masking your round face, shine a spotlight on it with an acid-hued buzz cut. If you’re concerned that you’ve been hiding behind your hair, just get rid of it and see what happens!
Braided French Twist
For a wedding or holiday party, try a classic style like this updated French twist. The added height at the crown and the strands around your face will create even proportions for your face. Rather than attempt this one at home, we’d recommend giving your trusty stylist a call.
One of the easiest styles to pull off in five minutes is the headband braid, which starts with at a deep side part and tucks behind one ear. Use a teasing comb and Shu Uemura Sheer Lacquer Finishing Spray to achieve volume at the top of your head, elongating your face.
Don’t sleep on pigtails—they’re one of the most versatile styles we know. We love how sophisticated these can look when paired with French or Dutch braids and clear hair elastics. As an added bonus, they’ll complement your round face.
In it for the drama? Us, too. Clip in your favorite ponytail extension and head into the night with this snatched ‘do. To ensure it stays sleek until the early morning hours, give it a final coat of Pureology Style + Protect Soft Finish Hairspray before leaving home.
Chin Length Bob
If you’re worried about losing your cheekbones to your face shape, try a chin length bob. This sharply angled cut will help define your jawline and give your face an angular edge. Just be prepared to return to the salon for regular trims to keep the line of the cut looking good.