The perfect hairstyle can work like an optical illusion---it can narrow a wide face, lengthen a short one, mask a broad forehead, or widen a narrow face. Narrow or "oblong" faces in particular need short-to-medium-length cuts with volume on the sides. Young men with oblong faces should avoid styles with a lot of volume on top or length beyond the shoulders (with the exception of ponytails, since this style pulls long hair back). In addition to choosing a style that complements your face, consider how much effort you want to put into your hair. If you don't have the time or desire to use gels, pomades, flat irons or hairdryers, you may want to opt for a simpler 'do.
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If your face is narrow but your forehead isn't long, a short cut with short razored fringe can be an edgy, stylish 'do that flatters your facial shape. Ask your stylist to keep some length on top so your hair lies flat but accent the sides and back with texture or layers. A short style with razored fringe above the eyebrows is instantly ready when you hop out of the shower and looks especially attractive with naturally wavy hair. Another style for wavy hair is the sideswept bang with shorter layers in the front and longer hair toward the neckline (think Joe Jonas). Other low-maintenance styles include buzzcuts and fades (i.e., curls on top with very short hair on the sides), but avoid cutting the sides much shorter than the top, or your face will only look narrower.
Boys may hesitate to admit it, according to the New York Times, but the Justin Bieber 'do is the most requested haircut since Keanu Reeves's spiky style in the 1990s. The Bieber style, otherwise known as the flip-and-switch, or the "flow," is appealing if you have a narrow face and long forehead, since the cut is round and full on the sides and front. You'll need to blow-dry it and possibly use a flat iron if your hair isn't stick-straight. Another look for naturally straight-haired teens is razored layers around the face with sideswept fringe, à la Adam Lambert. However, if you opt for Lambert's rocker spikes on top, keep them short in comparison with the sides of your hair, or you'll risk elongating your face.
Curly and African-American Hair
Curly or natural hair may be the exception to the rule against long hair for narrow faces. Because of the volume of curly hair, a long curly style may still be wide enough to offset a thin face. As previously mentioned, you should avoid fades, because curly hair will poof out on top and make your face look too thin and long. A layered chin-length cut with curly hair works wonders to widen your face---and if you simply don't want to deal with gelling up those unruly locks, consider cornrows, two-strand twists, or even dreadlocks. Twists and dreadlocks flatter thin faces because they are naturally lower on top and more voluminous on the sides.
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