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How to style hair for every face shape

Woman with brown long curly hair

‘Hair is everything.’ Phoebe Waller-Bridge puts it simply and brilliantly in her hit TV series Fleabag, reflecting on what a vital role our hair plays in our day to day confidence.

For thousands of years we have expressed ourselves through our hair – from the intricate gilded braids and bold lines of Ancient Egypt, to cloud-like Georgian wigs that defied gravity, and into the 20th Century where swoopy bangs, blowouts and perms ruled the roost. 

This illustrious history has made way for a new industry of modern hairstyling, older styles even coming back into fashion themselves at times. Styles for hair have been, and will likely continue to be, ever-changing, with cuts quickly going in and out with the trending tide.

Whilst trying to stay up to date with the latest hairstyles, it can sometimes cause us to stray from our authentic selves and can leave us thinking ‘well, what does MY good hair day look like?’

A good first step is to get up close and personal with your hair type. What texture is it? Is it thin or thick? Does it curl in places? Is it long or short? What shades of colour can you see? How does it frame your face? These are all questions that will help you determine the best look for both you and any future clients at your beauty salon.

Getting to know your face shape

A good thing to think about when deciding on your next style is face shape. Whilst each face is unique and may not always fit exactly into a set category, a gentle guide in the right direction is to consider the 6 basic face shapes: Round, Oval, Square, Rectangle, Heart, and Diamond.


Round face types appear (unsurprisingly) rounded in shape, with soft edges and symmetry in width and length

Style suggestions: 

  • long bob
  • blunt mid-length styles
  • side parting


Similarly to the round face shape, oval faces often have softer lines and edges, whilst presenting slightly longer with a more narrow point towards the chin

Style suggestions: 

  • shoulder-length
  • long waves
  • curtain bangs


Often equal in width and length with a sharp jaw, squarer faces can appear quite symmetrical

Style suggestions: 

  • curls and waves
  • textured pixie cut
  • soft tousled bob

Rectangle (oblong)

Rectangular faces share a likeness to square face types, often with a sharp or strong jaw. However, rectangle face types tend to be longer than in wide

Style suggestions:

  • middle parting
  • layered and long
  • sleek bob 


Those with a heart shape face tend to have a wider forehead, which then leads down to higher, more defined cheekbones and a pointed chin

Style suggestions:

  • blunt fringe
  • long bob
  • choppier style pixie cuts


Diamond faces often present with sharp, angular features, and share the heart shape’s trademark point at the chin and higher cheekbones

Style suggestions:

  • natural curls/coils long bob
  • more tousled styles
  • side parting 

Getting a good idea of your own or your client’s face shape will help narrow down your search for styles. A useful step is to perhaps look at hairstyles worn by your favourite celebrities with the same face shape, and see if any spark your interest.

To fringe or not to fringe

Ah, the age-old question. Fringes can be a tricky business, particularly when considering different hair textures and types. 

Forehead length and size can be a contributing factor in deciding on a fringe, but no matter your face shape there is sure to be a fringe that you can absolutely rock! There are many fringe styles out there, so we would suggest doing a bit of research into the styles you like and seeing where it leads you. 

Our UK cousins at Glamour have created a helpful guide to different fringe styles and cuts, as well as guidance on which fringe may best accentuate your face shape.

Self-confident styling

It can be incredibly empowering to learn to master our own hair and to have the skills and confidence to keep it looking and feeling good not only for ourselves…but for others too! The best news? There are an array of hairstyling courses available that don’t necessarily require extensive previous training or experience. 

Perhaps you’ve already found yourself googling things like ‘hairstyling course NZ, searching for courses happening close to home, and even looking into hairstyling courses online so that you can fulfil your creative potential with ease. A good place to start might be to explore such searches as: hair styling courses for beginners, hair styling short courses and hairdressing short courses.

At New Zealand Beauty School, we offer a course on hair extensions, opening up possibilities for creative hairstyling without having to wait for locks to reach Rapunzel lengths.

If you have any questions or would like to know more about the courses we offer, check out our website or get in touch – we’d love to hear from you!

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