Is there any hair style more divisive than bangs?
When we say divisive, we mean in that internal debate – should I get bangs? Kind of way. Find us a woman who hasn’t asked herself this question. It’s a rite of hair passage for women to debate getting bangs. Only to be inspired by a new look or wanting a change and going through the process all over again.
Bangs have a dramatic impact on how they shape your face and they’re not an easy hairstyle to hide or tweak after the scissors are put down. Bangs also work differently for everyone, making it even harder to picture ourselves with just the right look. When going through all the emotional stages of asking yourself, should I get bangs, women will turn to photos of celebrities with bangs for inspiration, ask their girlfriends for opinions, their hairstylists, maybe even their mom – sometimes, they’ll even ask Google. The search for “Are bangs a good idea?” turns up more than 105 million hits. If you were searching for bangs or no bangs and landed here – welcome. Please know, you are not alone.
While you can play with different lengths, styles, volume and even color with hair extensions, learning how to style bangs can require more commitment when you’re looking to change things up.
As you weigh all your options, here are all the different stages of emotions every girl goes through when she wants to cut bangs.
It can strike you one morning while getting ready – should I get bangs? You ask yourself. You proceed with your day, perhaps Googling how to style bangs, long hair with bangs or short hair with bangs. Playing with length can be easy and fun with hair extensions, but bangs are a different ball game. You turn to Instagram and start looking up bangs hairstyles and so the process begins. Your curiosity has been piqued and by the time you return home that evening you’re playing with your hair to see if you can mimic a bang look. Good thing there’s an app for that. Virtually try on almost any hair color and any hair style – even bangs with just a few clicks on your phone. Could this lead to the next stage in making your hair appointment? Maybe not yet.
2. Celebrity crushing
With all that time looking at photos you’re bound to come across a few famous women with bangs. With New York Fashion Week just wrapped up, with London, Paris and Milan on the way, we know the Queen of FROWing will be there. Anna Wintour, Vogue editor in chief and loyal to the short bob and bangs look for years. Her look is signature – just add big shades. But there are other celebrities who’ve made bold statements with bags recently; Charlize Theron, Emma Watson, Camila Cabello, just to name a few. With the best stylists on speed dials, many celebs don’t even have to commit to bangs. Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and Chrissy Teigen have fun and get creative with their hair styles by using clip-in bangs. Celebs are great sources of inspiration when looking for tips on how to style bangs. Jennifer Lopez rocks a sexy side swept bang while Zooey Deschanel has definitely mastered a girl next door type of look with waves. There are so many different styles to choose from. If only you could decide bangs or no bangs.
Hey, if a-list celebrities can’t even commit to cutting bangs, you can’t be expected to, right?
3. Ask everyone, their mother, and Google.
Who do we turn to in our fashion and beauty crises? Our girls. Maybe you send them screen shots from the hairstyle try-on app, or you bombard them with texts on what to do. Perhaps you even call your mom and she reminds you of that bowl cut she gave you in grade school, which doesn’t help. Cutting bangs has suddenly become the topic on girls’ night and now your whole circle of friends are thinking of bangs – maybe even cutting them together. You ask your fashionista friend, the makeup lover, your workout buddies, your desk mates, your boyfriend, their friends, etc. etc. Everyone has an opinion – should they all be heard?
4. Illusions of change
There could be a whole new you on the other side of cutting bangs. Why limit yourself from the abundant potential this new hairstyle could bring? Just that it’s a big change and takes a quite a while to really grow out. So, would your life really change for better? This is where that innocent, playful curiosity around a new haircut suddenly turns to confusion. Who are you anyway? What type of woman debates cutting bangs? Should I get bangs? Cut them and just find out? No answers yet.
5. No sleep
With more questions, there is less time for Zzzs. You chant bangs or no bangs, the same way you’d say he loves me, he loves me not, as a kind wondering about their crush. You’re spending more time on your phone looking at photos of celebrities with bangs, researching hairstylists, playing with hair styling apps. You may have even learned how to use Photoshop to give your selfies bangs. The process has become consuming and you’re officially losing sleep over the decision to whether you should cut your hair and get bangs. You dream of it, wake up, and start the debate again.
6. Independent woman stance
Over it. You want to change your hairstyle and your look, and you’ve decided to cut your bangs. You’re a grown woman with great taste and a new haircut is just what you need. You ignore everyone’s opinion – whether they are yay or nay for bangs – and make your appointment. You’re pumped, you take a bunch of “before” selfies so you can truly compare your transformation, and you count the hours until your appointment.
Appointment day! You’re in your stylist’s chair, they’ve just fastened your robe and your hair is wet and smelling shampooed fresh and ready for a whole new look. Maybe even a whole new you. But as your stylists begins to talk you through the process, asking about length, hair style for your face shape, what your hair routine is already like – it hits you. You’re not longer wondering should I get bangs and are actually doing it! You quickly go through all the celebrity images and app mock-ups in your head and wonder if it’s not too late to cancel the appointment or just ask for a blow-out or trim instead. Your stylist convinces you it’ll look great. You take a deep breath hear the slice of the scissors and watch the first few strands fall on your smock. It’s too late now.
8. Feeling yourself
After the blow dry and first few looks – you love it. Take a bunch of photos and even get your stylist in on them. You just cut your bangs and you feel beautiful – yes, it is a whole new you on the other side of this haircut. You send pics to all your girls and prep your Instagram posts with your before and after. Round up your friends – you’re hitting the town with your new ‘do.
9. Grow out regret
The bangs are starting to itch. That unavoidable grow out phase where they fall in the wrong places, obscure your vision and get tangled with each other. They require a little more work to blow dry or flat iron, even just to get them to move out of your way. Now you’re turning to Google to ask how to style bangs. You think of how some people say they make you look younger, or more grown up, chicer, less chic it’s been a mix of reactions and wonder if you’ve taken the look too far. Why did I get bangs in the first place? You ask.
10. Feeling yourself part 2
Look out J.Lo the bangs are long enough for that sexy side swept look that are easily style with a round brush and a blow-dryer. Who knew there would be so many ways to style bangs after they’ve grown out a bit. They’ve got life and bounce and move in a oh so flirtatious way when you whip your head back slightly. You’re looking these longer bangs now and ridicule yourself for ever doubting cutting bangs. You went through so much trouble, why not big yourself up for making a decision to try something new. Just like Beyoncé and Nicki said, I’m feeling myself.
The bangs have gotten a bit too long now, and you can actually start pinning them back. Is it time for a trim or should you continue growing them out? The bangs have been fun to style, while there were some annoyances, cutting bangs gave you a fresh new look and an opportunity to play with different hair styles. Is it time to go back or is it time for a new style of bangs like fringe, or a more layered look? You open up your phone to Instagram and start looking for inspiration. Should I get bangs…again?
If you just don't have the emotional capacity to deal with bangs, clip-in bangs are the next best thing. Unlike real bangs, clip-in bangs are the perfect solution to the "should I or shouldn't I" dilemma we all face. Check them out here.
Written by: Rosalyn Solomon