Maybe it’s crossed your mind once or twice: Should I get bangs? It’s associated with a rather rash decision—a post-breakup cut or haphazard chop with kitchen scissors when you were five, perhaps. But deciding to just get bangs isn’t as easy as plopping yourself in the salon chair and hoping for the best (or, if you know your way around a DIY trim, taking some shears to your own strands).
In fact, there are many types of bangs to sort through before making the final call. So many, actually, that the sheer number may deter you from a shorn style altogether (a very real concept I’ve now coined “fringe fear”).
Let this soothe your nerves: According to Nick Stenson, celebrity hairstylist and artistic director of Matrix, each and every type of bang ultimately falls into one of three categories: Blunt, symmetrical, and asymmetrical. Blunt is perhaps most self explanatory—the ends taper off horizontally; symmetrical means the bangs are equally weighted based on a center part; and asymmetrical, meaning they skew significantly toward one side.
Under that umbrella, there’s no shortage of bang archetypes to play around with. Below, we’ve collected nine of the most common, and experts weigh in on how to style them best.
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