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Hairstyles to suit different face shapes Part 3 - Long or Oblong faces

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Best Hairstyles For Your Face Shape Part 3

Face The Facts : Styles for square and long faces

If your three facial width measurements (from the hairline at each temple across the forehead, from ear-to-ear beneath the eyes, and across the jaw-line from just above the upper lip) are all equal, your face length (centrally measured from hairline to chin) is roughly one-and-a-half times longer than these measurements and you have a strong, angular jaw, then you almost certainly fall into the square face category.

Is it hip to be square? You bet it is! Square faces are apparently the most photogenic, while square-jawed women with strong angular features tend to age more gracefully, and if you need further proof just bear in mind you're sharing the same facial attributes as the likes of Helena Christensen, Keira Knightley and Angelina Jolie.

Such an arresting natural profile can often benefit from a little softening, and many of the most successful styles for square faces are contrived to play down an unusually strong forehead or angular jawline. So naturally, waves and curls work especially well against square faces, and side swept fringes that just graze the brows are also elegant and super effective. Other textural elements such as choppy ends and plenty of layering also work extremely well on the square face, which is why you just can't go wrong with the casual modern shag style. For something longer think about style that extend in layers from the jaw-line, and remember that for the uncompromising, short edgy cuts on square faces make a seriously striking statement.


Jennifer Garner gets it right with curly shoulder length waves and centre parting, but Gwyneth Paltrow gets it badly wrong with a severe scraped back ponytail.


If the length of your face is more than one-and-a-half times its width at the widest point then welcome to the long end of the facial ratio, you are the proud possessor of a long/oblong face. So what's with the long face? Well quite a lot actually. The aquiline elegance of long faces conveys innate wisdom and grace, and longer faced celebrities such as Liv Tyler and Elle Macpherson as are never going to get accused of being bimbo starlets.

The trick to framing longer faces is never drag them further vertically with even longer hair, shoulder-length hair and chin length bobs are especially flattering with this face shape as they create the illusion of width, but fortunately long faces really aren't short of style options. Straight hair can sometimes over accentuate longer faces so consider adding at least a bit of wave and remember that the a-symmetry of a side parting helps to break up the heavy verticals. Extremely long and very short cuts will prove equally effective at elongating your face so as a rule they're best avoided, and if you've decided on a shoulder length cut make sure your hairdresser keeps plenty of volume in your hair at the shoulder - thin, wispy ends don't do any favours flapping against flapping against longer face shapes.


Naomi Campbell has kept her long straight hair by balancing out her long face with a deep 'below the brow' fringe that completely masks her high forehead. Adrianne Palicki's gorgeous tumbling waves add so much side volume that you'd never know her natural face shape is oblong.

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