Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
The decision to cut bangs is one of those quandaries you'll belabor for ages, especially if you've ever had a haircut you didn't like. But, when you decide to snip some fringe, you wanna do it right that minute. Problem is: How do you DIY without looking like a kid attacked you with craft scissors?
It's easier than you might think. Bangs are my thing, and after budgetary constraints made near-constant salon appointments impossible, I finally had a stylist show me how to manage upkeep on my own. And, I've been cutting my bangs for years. Here's my go-to guide for fixing up some face fringe in five quick steps.
1. Get your hair completely straight. Blow your hair out, add a flat iron, do what you have to do, but do NOT cut your hair when it's wet. Hair shrinks when soaked, so you can't accurately judge how much length you'll have when it dries. Give yourself the cutest blowout in history before you start — you'll be working with the most ideal canvas.
2. Section off the part of your hair that will become bangs. Go as thick or thin as you want. I would suggest not cutting more hair than can comfortably fit between your index and middle fingers. You can always go back and cut more, but make sure it's a manageable section to start.
3. Prepare to cut. Pull the section forward, then close the hair between your index and middle fingers where you want your bangs to hit your forehead. Pull it taut — but not too tight — to predict how your soon-to-be bangs will fall naturally.
4. Snip, snip. Holding the cuticle scissors vertically, make tiny cuts upward into the hair that's hanging out of your fingers. Boom. That's how you create fringe. Snip about a centimeter or so lower than you think you should; You can always go back and shorten if you've left too much length. Take your time. I like to work from the middle out so I can make sure the sides are even. If you want blunt bangs, just cut straight across still leaving that extra centimeter and pacing yourself.
5. Check your work. Release your finger-hold and tousle what's left. Cute? Not so much? Go back and repeat the process if you want to shorten or add more layers. Then, walk away before you cut too much. You're done.
If you just need to trim your bangs, follow the exact same process. Done and done. You saved yourself a trip to the salon and you can move on with your life!
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