How Do I Cut a Fringe in Hairdressing?

There is an art to cutting a fringe in hairdressing. Fringe, known as fringe in the United States, if properly cut can disguise large foreheads or wrinkles and blemishes, as well as help reduce the appearance of a large forehead and cover hairline irregularities and overall bad haircuts. On the other hand, a badly cut fringe can ruin a good haircut. Here are some tips on how to cut a fringe properly.

Choosing a Fringe

Use very sharp scissors because you will be using only the tip of the scissor blades to cut the fringe. Some hairdressers recommend using a straight razor for cutting fringe, but you must know how to handle it to cut an effective line.

Many hairdressers will tell you to always cut a fringe when the hair is wet, although there is a school of thought that says to make sure the hair is dry. Just remember that, if the hair is wet, it will be significantly shorter when it dries. Also keep in mind that curly hair will dry much shorter than straight hair.

There are some things to consider when cutting a fringe. One of the most important is the type of hair you are cutting. For example, you can give fine or thinning hair the appearance of more fullness if the fringe is swept to the side.

Fringe is usually not recommended for extremely wavy or curly hair unless it is styled to be straighter with a blow dryer or flattening iron.

Consider the length and condition of the hair you cut. If the hair is long, you can blend the fringe with the longer sides or emphasise it by maintaining a large length difference between it and the sides. If hair has been harmed by colouring or perming, a fringe might not be appropriate. Also, a fringe may emphasise oily hair and skin.

Along with the hair type, consider the shape of the face. A fringe should frame and flatter the face. Any style of fringe usually can be cut for oval faces, whereas round faces generally do well with soft layers and feathered fringes that are tailored to the cheeks and help give angles.

You can make long faces look more oval by cutting a fringe in a blunt line or in long layers that softly frame the face. Side-swept fringe curing into the face help soften a wide or square face or a prominent chin. A full fringe can complement a heart-shaped face, and wispy or feathered fringes balance out a triangle-shaped face.

In addition, minimise a wide forehead or balance out a wide chin with a wispy fringe. In general, avoid a pageboy fringe that has a flat line across the face, and remember that a fringe cut to just above the eyebrows emphasises the eyes; fringes that are too long accentuate the nose.

Cutting a Fringe

When cutting a fringe it is useful to remember three basic shapes in which to comb the hair above the forehead before cutting.

Carve out a crescent with your comb beginning in the middle about 1 inch from the hairline, which will be the middle of the crescent. Part the hair first toward the left then toward the right with both ending points even with each other on the side of the face. Trim the fringe out of the hair within the crescent to end up with a curved fringe.

Carve out a rectangle for thin hair in the same manner as above, maintaining an even distance from the hairline. This will produce a fuller fringe.

With longer hair, carve out a triangle shape to blend a longer fringe into the overall haircut.

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About the Author

Karren Doll Tolliver holds a Bachelor of English from Mississippi University for Women and a CELTA teaching certificate from Akcent Language School in Prague. Also a photographer, she records adventures by camera, combining photos with journals in her blogs. Her latest book, "A Travel for Taste: Germany," was published in 2015.