If you want to change up your hairstyle or add more edge to your haircut, you may want to experiment with the micro bangs trend. These straight-across, extra-short bangs are a total power move if you’ve already tried every type of bang in the proverbial book. Not sure you can pull off micro bangs? They’re actually less intimidating than you may think. A general rule of thumb is to tailor them to your face shape—and to dedicate some additional styling time to them.
We spoke with Mexico-based hairstylist Fabiola Sánchez to get her take on the trend and her favorite ways to style a short fringe. Scroll through for answers to all your burning questions about micro bangs.
What are micro bangs?
Micro bangs are a super short, full set of bangs perched mid-forehead or above. First spotted on the red carpet in the 1950s, they’re edgy, surprising, and just what you need to make a bold statement. The defining factor of micro brows is how their miniature length shows off your eyebrows—and keeping your arches on point is key to pulling the whole look together. We suggest investing in eyebrow-filling products to help sculpt and define your brows since they’ll be a focal point of your features.
What's the difference between micro bangs and baby bangs?
The terms micro bangs and baby bangs are often used interchangeably, but there is actually a subtle difference between the two. Micro bangs are the shorter style, falling only an inch or two below the hairline. Baby bangs, on the other hand, are a touch longer, hovering just above the brows.
Who can pull off micro bangs?
Sánchez notes that inverted triangle, oval, and round faces jive especially well with the drastic cut. These face shapes are softer and have less sharp angles, which is something micro bangs can sometimes emphasize. However, that’s not to say that micro bangs will only look good on these face shapes. Just because you don’t have one of these aforementioned shapes doesn’t mean you can’t experiment with the look. Cut by a professional stylist, micro bangs can be tweaked to complement anyone’s features. For example, the curve of side-swept micro bangs can help balance the sharpness of a square or heart-shaped face. Face-framing layers are also a great way to soften the style.
How do I find my face shape?
Deciphering your face shape can feel abstract, but we’re here to help. Grab a measuring tape (or eyeball it), then measure the following:
- The distance across your forehead
- Cheekbone to cheekbone
- Across your jawline from ear to ear
- From your hairline to down under your chin
Oval Face Shape
Your cheekbones are the widest part of your face, and your face is longer than it is wider. Oval faces are sometimes considered the most proportional and balanced, allowing them to pull off many haircuts and styles.
Round Face Shape
The width of your face is the same as the length, and your forehead and jawline both have a rounded shape.
Heart Face Shape:
The hallmark of a heart-shaped face is that the outline forms a prominent V-shape—picture the lines starting at your temples and connecting at your chin. With this shape, your forehead and cheekbones are equal in width but wider than your jawline. A widow’s peak is also a common feature.
Though similar to a heart-shaped face, the distinguishing feature of an inverted triangle shape is that it doesn’t have a widow’s peak. Your forehead and cheekbones are equal in width but wider than your jawline. Your hairline is also rounder, and your face is longer than it is wide.
Oblong Face Shape
If your face’s length is double its width, then you likely have an oblong face shape. Your cheekbones, forehead, and jawline are roughly all the same width.
Square Face Shape
Your forehead is as wide as your jaw, and the length of your face is the same as its width. Your jawline is square with minimal curves to the cheekbones.
Diamond Face Shape
Your cheekbones are wider than your forehead. You have a narrow chin, and the width of your face is equal to its length.
If you’re undecided about whether or not your face shape can pull off micro bangs, trim a pair of faux bangs to your desired length and snap a few selfies before committing to the real thing.
Need visual inspiration for your micro bang appointment? Here are six looks we’re loving.
6 On-Trend Ways to Wear Micro Bangs
Classic Blunt Cut
Ask your hairdresser to cut one length straight across for a bold yet timeless look. Experts recommend keeping your blunt cut slightly longer if you wish to style your micro bangs into different looks.
“Keep them controlled and well-combed with good products,” Sánchez advises. “Most importantly, look into products with heat protection if you regularly use a blow dryer or flat iron for styling.” Redken’s Thermal Spray High Hold can be your ally in all things heat styling.
Jagged Micro Bangs
Gone are the days when we needed the ends of our hair to be straight as can be. We love how jagged ends give off a low-maintenance, rock-n-roll vibe.
Curly Micro Bangs
Straight strands isn’t the hair type that can sport micro bangs: A few springy curls on your forehead is undeniably adorable. Since curls and coils are prone to shrinkage as hair dries, your stylist may opt to dry cut your curls to ensure your length is exactly where you want it. After the cut, you can define your ringlets with a little help from Mizani’s True Textures Curl Define Pudding, which provides frizz-free manageability without crunch or flaking.
Extra Short Micro Bangs
Go extra short with your micro bangs. But remember: Just because your bangs are cropped doesn’t mean you can ignore them. “[Shorter lengths] do not require so much maintenance, but they do require care to make them look healthy,” Sánchez notes. To keep yours looking smooth against humidity, she recommends Redken’s Frizz Dismiss Rebel Tame Leave-In Cream.
Bonus points if you dye your micro bang haircut into a fashion hue like mahogany, as pictured here.
Asymmetrical Micro Bangs
Social media shows slanted fringes are in. Your stylist can help you create your own punk rock twist on the trend by working angular, asymmetrical cuts into your micro bangs.
“With the help of a styling product, you can shape [the micro bangs] into the effect that you’re looking for, whether firm or soft,” explains Sánchez. For a piecey look that still has natural movement, try Redken’s Pliable Paste.
Micro Bangs With Color Block
Make your micro bangs the star of your hairstyle by dyeing them with the color block technique. A hue like pink is always in style. Keep the whimsical shade from fading by adding Matrix’s Keep Me Vivid Shampoo, Conditioner, and Lamination Spray to your hair care lineup.
How do you grow out micro bangs?
When you’re ready to transition out of your micro bangs era, it’s important to know what’s realistic so you can adapt your routine accordingly. Since hair grows about half an inch per month, it may take up to six months to see noticeable growth from your super-short fringe. Below are a few ways to manage the grow-out process.
Focus on strength.
The healthier your hair is, the faster it’ll grow because there will be less breakage. Look for hair care systems designed to strengthen your hair now and later, such as Redken’s Extreme Length. This biotin-infused regimen helps fortify strands from root to tip to reduce breakage and help hair grow longer and stronger over time.
Hair experts normally advise getting regular trims to maintain your haircut, but some make an exception for bangs. As Redken brand educator Laura Frazier recently told us: “I wouldn’t trim a bang to blend or style it into a cut until it touches the cheekbone. Focus on products for strength and growth and put the shears down.”
Retaining additional length is key to expediting the end of your micro bang phase. Besides, if you’re using the right strengthening products, you may be able to go even longer between trims anyway.
If you’re a fan of heat-styling your bangs, reducing your daily wash sessions can help minimize the impact of damaging hot tools. When your roots need a refresh, grab a dry shampoo like Kérastase’s Fresh Affair Dry Shampoo and give your scalp a generous spritz.