With each new bang trend that graces your FYP, it gets tougher and tougher to ignore the call of the fringe. Bangs are undeniably cute in every form, but “shadow bangs” — a haircut trend with over 36 million views on TikTok — might actually inspire you to finally take the plunge.
Shadow bangs are an ideal way to ease into the world of fringe because they’re always on the longer side, says Brittany Johnson, a licensed stylist and senior brand marketing manager at Mayvenn. Instead of going for a thick, short, or blunt cut, shadow bangs are all about eyebrow-grazing length, wispy see-through strands, and lots of shape and movement.
To see these bangs in action, check out Rihanna and Billie Eilish, who have both rocked the look. “Shadow bangs feel updated and new, but they’re really just a refreshed take on combining the wispiness and length of curtain bangs with the straightforwardness and brow-grazing shape of previously blunt cut bangs,” she tells Bustle.
Longer bangs are having a moment not only because they’re easier to style — and grow out — but because they’re much more versatile than blunt or baby bangs. As Johnson says, “They allow you to wear your bangs fully styled or you can pull them back and go for a completely different look.”
Here’s what to know about shadow bangs, including how to perfect them at home.
How To Ask For Shadow Bangs
To get this type of fringe at the salon, Johnson recommends asking your stylist for long bangs that graze your eyebrows and taper off on the ends. They should be wispy and piece-y enough to see your forehead through your hair.
“The great thing about shadow bangs is that, with a few tweaks, they work well on a variety of face shapes,” she adds. If you have a rounder face, keep the sides of your bangs longer to frame your features and highlight your cheekbones. If your face is more angular, go for extra wispy ends to create texture and movement.
Since these bangs are so long to start with, they tend to grow out quickly and hang in front of your eyes, which is why it’s best to get regular trims. According to Johnson, you’ll know your shadow bangs need a touch-up when they’re hard to style or they’ve lost their shape.
How To Style Shadow Bangs
To nail the shadow bang look, use a round brush to blow dry your hair up away from your head at the root before drying straight down, Johnson says. This technique will straighten your strands so that your bangs touch down just above your brows while also adding movement. She suggests spritzing on a heat protectant to preserve your hair and to add shine, without weighing your bangs down. Remember, it’s all about that extra-light look.