Think you can't cut your own curtain bangs at home? Think again! Thanks to their wispy look and laid-back vibe, curtain bangs are one of the easiest looks to execute outside the salon.
Named for its face-framing effect, the tapered fringe style is versatile enough to compliment any face shape and hair texture. Whether you have curly or straight hair, long hair, or medium-length hair, you can create the perfect curtain bangs at home.
Cutting your own bangs can feel intimidating. In this brief guide, we'll teach you how to cut curtain bangs at home, along with tips and tricks to make you feel confident from the first snip to the final blow dry.
Armed with our step-by-step instructions (and an abundance of TikTok and YouTube tutorials should you need them), you can nail the look without splurging on a trip to the salon. But before you start snipping, let's take a closer look at the effortlessly chic hairstyle you're hoping to achieve.
What Are Curtain Bangs?
As many a celebrity hairstylist and beauty editor can attest, curtain bangs are one of the most universally flattering types of bangs. Typically worn with a center part, the loose, shearing hair straight across, framing your face the way open curtains frame a window. The tapered fringe style is snipped according to your bone structure and natural hair texture, helping it flatter everything from wavy wolf cuts to shoulder-length curls.
How to Cut Curtain Bangs
Before grabbing the scissors, you may want to look up a few reference photos to act as a guide. Find people with a similar face shape and hair texture to ensure you've got a realistic idea of what look you can achieve.
Then, follow these step-by-step instructions to snip your way to selfie-worthy curtain bangs. To ensure the low-maintenance look works with your natural shape and texture, start with clean, dry hair.
1. Gather Your Supplies
Before you start cutting, set yourself up for success with the correct supplies and location. Gather the following items in a well-lit bathroom with a large mirror and plenty of counter space:
To cut curtain bangs, you'll need something other than your regular kitchen scissors. Get a pair of sharp shears designed specifically for cutting hair. They'll come in handy whenever you need a quick trim.
You'll also need a comb, preferably a rattail comb with a pointed tip, to establish your part and separate small pieces of hair.
A simple hair tie or scrunchie keeps your extra hair out of the way while you cut.
You can secure the bun with bobby pins if you have long hair.
2. Wet Your Hair
While you don't have to, wet hair is much easier to work with and will give you a much cleaner line. If you don't want to get your hair wet, you can use a flat iron and straighten small sections of your hair before proceeding.
3. Part Your Hair & Create a Triangular Section
Using your comb, part your hair down the center or at your natural part. Curtain bangs are typically worn with a middle part, allowing them to frame your face symmetrically.
Next, you'll need to section out the hair you'll be cutting into your bangs and secure the rest of your hair back with a hair tie. It's always best to err on the side of caution and start with a smaller section. You can always trim more hair, but you can never uncut what's already gotten the chop.
With a comb, section the front of your hair into a triangle. With the base at the outer corner of each eye and center towards the crown of your head. A wide, shallow triangular section will create thin, wispy bangs, while a larger one will add thickness and dimension.
4. Cut a Reference Piece
Part the triangle section down the middle, ensuring it falls equally on either side of your nose. Find a small strand in the middle to use as your guide piece going forward. This helps you get precise results and prevents you from accidentally cutting your bangs too short.
Snip your guide piece to your desired length, leaving a little extra at the end just in case. You can always cut off a bit more, but you can't go back and cut less, so don't get too scissor-happy on the first pass.
Now, it's time to get to work. The secret to successfully cutting curtain bangs is using the correct snipping technique. Hold your shears vertically instead of horizontally, and use small, quick snips. This will help create a blended look, as opposed to harsh lines.
Start in your guide piece in the middle and work outwards, adding a little more length as you go. Remember, you're aiming for a tapered fringe that sweeps away from the face. With each snip, compare both sides to ensure everything looks symmetrical.
6. Touch Up
Once you've done the first pass, comb through your bangs to help them fall naturally. Conservatively trim any uneven spots that need a little touch-up, then repeat this step once you've finished styling your bangs.
How to Style Curtain Bangs
Congrats! The hard work is over, and now it's time to get styling. Curtain bangs need a little volume and shaping to look their best, so unless you've got curly hair or naturally very wavy hair, you'll need to do a little zhuzhing.
One option is to use a blow dryer and a round brush. After wetting your bangs with a spray bottle, dry and curl your bangs using a swooping motion. Hold the brush underneath your bangs and point the dryer downward. Alternatively, use a large barrel curling iron to create loose curls that sweep away from your face Farrah Fawcett style. Or, just wash and go with a bit of curl cream!