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We thought we’d never see the day, but curtain bangs are back with a, well, bang. And while the modern resurgence isn’t a carbon copy of the original 1970s style, curtain bangs do have a cool, nostalgic vibe that's definitely part of the appeal.
Just as the name suggests, curtain bangs are slightly grown-out bangs that are parted in the middle, like a pair of curtains. Because they’re longer than your typical fringe, curtain bangs are less dramatic-looking and less high maintenance than classic bangs hairstyles. "They are a great way to freshen up a hairstyle—they suit long or short hair and almost any face shape," agrees Charles Worthington Salons' Senior Master Stylist Jess Johnson, and Fekkai stylist Elidona Pjetraj agrees. "Because they are cut purposely to frame your face, the growth is very natural and effortless."
As a visual reference, the most iconic curtain bangs of all time belong to Charlie’s Angel Farrah Fawcett and Iconic comedy actor Goldie Hawn. But the style didn't die out with disco, hair icons of every era, from Jennifer Lopez and her butterfly haircut to the Duchess of Cambridge, have experimented with this look at some point.
How to pick the best curtain bangs style
- Face shape: "The thing that I like most about curtain bangs is that they can be tweaked to suit everybody—they can be done on any face shape,” says Pjetraj. “This is because you can style them in so many ways: straight, waves, natural shape, with a ponytail hairstyle or pinned back.”
- Hair thickness: Certain hair types may require specific curtain bangs to be cut in. “When the hair is quite thick they can blend in too much with the rest of the hair, so it’s important to cut them quite chunky in order that they stand out," advises legendary hairdresser Larry King.
- Hair texture: While thick, straight and swingy curtain bangs may be the original 1970s look, this style actually lends itself beautifully to curly hair too. "Not all curly-haired clients will suit a full block fringe but curly curtain bangs and or shorter pieces cut around the face are always a great option," says Ricky Walters, owner of SALON64.
- Trims: "Usually my clients will wait for the six-to-eight week mark to get their bangs cut in again, although with anything shorter—say if the reference is the eye or high cheekbone—to maintain that then they may want to pop in for a fringe trim after three-to-four weeks," advises Sian Quinn, artistic ambassador for Headmasters.
Curtain bangs: 34 looks our beauty team loves
Curtain bangs with short hair
A bob with bangs is a timelessly chic hairstyle, but a curtain bang twist brings the look right into the now. Another short haircut that's a huge hair trend 2023 is the shag—a cool '70s throwback look that perfectly compliments a center-parted fringe.
1. The rounded bob with curtain bangs
This chic, gamine style suits oval and heart-shaped faces best and really enhances great bone structure, making those cheekbones pop.
2. The sharp curtain bang bob
This beautiful style looks brilliant on hair that's smooth but not overly straight—the best hair straightener brushes will help you achieve the right level of smoothness.
3. The short shag cut with curtain bangs
Double down on 1970s style by combining a layered shag haircut with a center-parted fringe. The trick to keeping this look modern is knowing how to style layered hair for choppy definition.
4. The layered bob with curtain bangs
Medium to thick hair textures, as well as naturally wavy hairstyles will bring beautiful movement to this cute, short bob with layers.
5. The classic lob with curtain bangs
A lob hairstyle is a great option for anyone with a square or round face, as the extra length is a little more forgiving. Teamed with tapered curtain bangs here, this style has bags of versatility.
6. The curly bob with curtain bangs
Nothing says '70s glamour like naturally curly hair with loose curtain bangs. Encourage beautiful definition by following the curly girl method.
7. The tousled balayage curtain bang bob
It's the color that makes this style so special. Beachy bleached balayage through the ends of the bob and front of the curtain bangs make for a cool-girl look.
8. The short-bangs modern mullet
This style has a rock 'n roll edge, thanks to the modern mullet cut and graduation of length in the bangs. It suits finer hair particularly well, ideally with a bit of natural texture.
9. The sculpted bob with long bangs
Look effortlessly put together with this sleek yet low-maintenance style. Add sea salt spray to achieve this tousled look.
10. The shoulder skimming bob with thin bangs
Ease yourself in to curtain bangs with this subtle, thinner style. Easily blendable but still making a statement, this style is ideal for those who want to test the waters of this trend.
11. The curly cropped side-part
Add some layers to your 'do with this unique side parted cropped cut. Use a curl cream or gel for extra bouncy curls that will make your bangs pop.
12. The grown out curtain bangs
This style works perfectly with balayage or colour dimension to accentuate framing around the face. Create some beachy waves to add bounce.
Curtain bangs with medium length hair
Who doesn't love medium haircuts with bangs? Long enough to put in hair up styles, short enough to be relatively low-maintenance. The only issue with versatile midi styles is they can struggle to make a statement, and that's where curtain bangs can help.
13. Heavy curtain bangs with shoulder length hair
Ultra-long curtain bangs with a beautiful blow-dry is such a classy look. The beauty of bangs this length is they grow out fairly swiftly into regular layers, so are a low-risk way to dip your toe into the trend.
14. The coily long lob with curtain bangs
Curtain bangs and coils are a match made in heaven. Depending on your curl type your hairstylist may want to cut these in dry—this will ensure they hit a flattering length at their most springy.
15. The classic beachy waves with curtain bangs
Showing how curtain fringes don't have to be a huge statement, this subtle beachy look blends long tapered front sections with face-framing layers and a subtle wave.
16. The soft curtain bangs and midi cut
Grown-out curtain bangs are a look all of their own. Try creating a bouncy blow dry and wrapping the front sections backward around a large vented brush to recreate this style.
17. The Parisian volumized style with curtain bangs
Shaggy, choppy with plenty of va-va-voom volume, this look has bags of je ne sais quoi. Oval, heart and square face shapes suit blunt cuts like this best. To achieve lasting root lift sprinkle a little texturizing dust into your fingers and gently tease the roots.
18. Medium coily cut with full curtain bangs
We love this shoulder-skimming coily style with fairly full curtain bangs. It would suit oval, heart and round face shapes best, and works beautifully with a bit of shine serum through the curls.
19. The layered medium curtain bangs
The choppy layers around the front give this style plenty of movement and texture. Try using a hair dryer brush to blow dry layers into a flicky, face-flattering style.
20. Curtain bangs high bun
Halle Berry is a curtain bang queen and has worked many iterations of the style over the years. Here, she teams softly highlighted and parted bangs with a chic messy bun updo for an elegant style.
21. Wavy style with feathered bangs
These blended curtain bangs are great for those who want some versatility when it comes to styling. Add some volumizing spray to the roots to add movement and dimension.
22. The high ponytail with sweeping bangs
Elevate your medium length hair with this sophisticated up-do. Perfect for round and heart face shapes, this style also suits a variety of hair types and is quick to pull together.
23. Short, graduated curtain bangs
These shorter curtain bangs look great on curly hair, especially if you have a slightly looser wave. Adding texture without being too heavy, the cropped ringlets frame the face perfectly.
24. The front layered lob
With medium length straight hair it can be challenging to add dimension, but these stacked layers provide just the right amount of edge. Low maintenance and easy to style, this is the perfect cut to change up you pin-straight look.
Curtain bangs with long hair
Long hair with curtain bangs is the iconic bohemian babe hairstyle. It's also probably the most high maintenance look here but if you're willing to put in a bit of extra styling effort it will be richly rewarded with flattering, flowing styles.
25. The long shag cut with curtain bangs
This beautiful, flowing style perfectly complements naturally wavy hair, or you can fake it by using large hot rollers and a misting of hairspray.
26. The curtain bangs ponytail
Whoever said ponytails are boring had never seen a pony with a curtain fringe. This is a great option when you don't have much time, hike up your lengths and you only need to style the bangs.
27. The ultra layered flicky style
Farrah Fawcett eat your heart out! This is a real nod to the past and can be created with a large vented brush and the best hair dryer. Apply some mousse before drying to help the style stick.
28. The feathery waves with curtain bangs
This cool, bendy wave is best achieved by learning how to curl hair with straighteners, rather than a curling iron which creates a rounder curl. Center part your hair for extra contemporary appeal.
29. The long and choppy curtain bangs style
Showing how clever curtain bangs can make fine hair look thicker, this flattering style combines a glossy fringe with sweet flicks and kicks through the ends.
30. The ultra-long wavy curtain bangs
This ultra-thick and long hairstyle gets a 2022 update with heavy, flicky curtain bangs. Keep hair this length in great condition by using the best hair mask for condition and moisture.
31. The glam curtain bangs blow-out
This style ramps up the glam factor on this generally relaxed style by creating a voluminous blow dry. Use a large round brush to emulate these gorgeous bouncy flicks then finish with hairspray.
32. Long layered bangs
Softly tapered and gently parted, this long and layered curtain bangs style suits fine to medium, relatively straight hair. This cut also looks fabulous up in a ponytail, with loose tendrils framing the face.
33. Very long copper curtain bangs
These curtain bangs are as long and subtle as they come, which makes them brilliantly low maintenance—if you don't like them, they'll simply be layers in a month! Style them by drying outwards with a round brush for extra '70s style.
34. Long coily bangs with volumised layers
This super long style carries more weight at the roots and skims down towards the ends. The graduated bangs make this the perfect style for those with curly hair who want to keep volume without their hair becoming too heavy.
35. The pulled back style
This delightfully simple style is perfect for long hair that can be tricky to manage. Add waves to create more texture, or keep slick for a more formal look.
36. The long flicky layers
If you love the idea of feathered layers but think that it can't be achieved on your long hair, think again. This style demonstrates how to incorporate the fun of the feathered style without compromising on length. For even bouncier ends, use a wide barrel curler.
37. The cheekbone skimming sweepy bangs
Keep long, thick hair light with this bouncy style. With bangs that skim over the cheekbones, hair will look full without being overbearing. Blow dry with a round brush for the ultimate sweeping layers.
Curtain bangs with curly hair
A curtain fringe + curls = retro-modern perfection. From loose waves to natural hairstyles with kinks and coils, those eye-framing sections at the front give a beautiful shape to a head of curly hair. Use one of the best diffusers for curly hair for extra definition.
38. The mid length curly curtain bangs
Achieving beautiful curl separation is key to this look. Try following the curly girl method to achieve glossy, defined curls around the front of your hairstyle.
39. The shoulder length wavy curly style
The combination of cut and color makes this style stand out. Top achieve this sunkissed look ask for balayage hair in tones of warm honey and creamy vanilla.
40. The corkscrew curtain bangs
This gorgeous natural hairstyle combines tight, coily curls with ultra-fine highlights in hair for a multi-tonal effect. A curl cream applied to the hair when damp will help achieve glossy separation.
41. Coily up-do with a curtain fringe
That curtain fringe add instant interest to this easy updo. Pull your hair into a super-high ponytail and rake forward with your fingers, securing with hidden bobby pins, then pull out a few flattering tendrils.
42. The shaggy curly cut with curtain bangs
This very sweet curly bob with curtain bangs is especially flattering on oval and heart-shaped faces. Use a diffuser when drying to gently shape your hair then ruffle with a little wax or pomade to achieve those modern, fluffy edges.
43. The loose curly curtain bangs
This hairstyle is all about the cut—have your stylist create a rounded shape by layering into the bangs and sides, taking weight out of the ends.
44. Coily bob with curtain bangs
This classic style is cleverly tapered to give a beautiful, flattering shape, with shorter layers around the top and an eyebrow skimming curtain fringe.
45. Volumized balayage curtain fringe hair
Volumized curls have a vintage appeal that's undeniable. If you don't have naturally curly hair, use a tong with a very large barrel to fake this glam look.
46. Curly curtain bangs updo
Longer curly curtain bangs make for a beautiful face-framing look with this piled-high bun. These defined curls can be created with perm rods or a narrow curling iron
47. The full coily curtain bangs
Accentuate tight coils with this halo-shaped bangs style. Ideal for dense curls, coils and waves, these bangs look best when dried with a diffuser.
48. Cropped loose curls bangs
Use a curl gel to really accentuate this style. Ideal for those with a looser curl pattern, this cropped cut is effortlessly cool when combined with creamy highlights.
49. The long curly shag
Let your hair do the talking with this trendy take on curtain bangs. A winner for round face shapes, these loose curly bangs accentuate the cheeks and jaw for a youthful, playful look.
50. Smooth side bangs with curly ends
If your hair falls somewhere in between curly and straight, this is the perfect style for you. Wavy hair often tends to be flatter at the root and gets more textured towards the end, so lean into your hair's natural pattern with this smooth side bang and bouncy ends combo.
Our beauty team's top products for curtain bangs
Garnier Ultimate Blends Hair Food, Banana 3-in-1 Dry Hair Mask Treatment | RRP: $4.40/£3.50
Cheap and cheerful, this 3-in-1 treatment by Garnier is ideal for all hair types and textures to add some much-needed moisture to keep curtain bangs glossy and healthy. The vegan formula also promises up to four times less breakage which is essential for heavily styled hair.
JVN Hair Complete Air Dry Cream | RRP: $24/£21
For low-maintenance bangs, JVN's air-dry cream provides everything you need to create hold without requiring additional heat styling. Formulated with hemisqualane, this product will also reduce damage and strengthen hair in the process.
- JVN Hair Complete Air Dry Cream at Space NK for £21 (opens in new tab)
woman&home thanks Ricky Walters of SALON64 (opens in new tab), Jess Johnson of Charles Worthington Salons (opens in new tab), Elidona Pjetraj of FEKKAI (opens in new tab), Sian Quinn of Headmasters (opens in new tab) and Larry King, founder of Larry King Salons (opens in new tab), for their time and expertise
Lucy is a UK-based beauty journalist who has written for the likes of Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, OK!, Women's Health and more, as well as contributing to woman&home. Her work covers everything from expert skin and haircare tips to the latest product launches and the show-stopping beauty looks spotted backstage at London Fashion Week. During her career she's interviewed some seriously famous faces, from Little Mix to Drag Race royalty The Vivienne, as well as chatting to the industry's leading hairdressers, dermatologists and make-up artists.
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