Should You Get A Curtain Fringe?

Marie Claire

Samantha McMeekin

March 24th, 2021

Considering it? Here’s what you need to know

Dakota Johnson has them. Alexa Chung loves them. And it seems just about every woman coming out of quarantine now wants them.

We’re of course talking about: curtain fringes.

Those slightly long, soft and swept to each side bangs that look so damn effortless and cool. But be warned, they’re not for everyone.

So before you commit to the cut, here’s everything you need to know. From which face shapes and hair types suit curtain fringes the best, to the maintenance this trending style needs…

What hair types and lengths suit curtain fringes best?

Bad luck to those who committed to a bob already, as John Pulitano, Creative Director at Headcase Hair, says the style works best on medium-length and long-length hair.

“[It can’t be] too short as you need a more rectangular silhouette to make it work. Too short gives more of a square silhouette, which doesn’t look so good,” he tells Marie Claire.

As for texture, Mariah Rota, celebrity hair stylist and owner of Cole Hair says, “Generally straighter or wavy hair is better suited.”

“Very curly hair when cut into a curtain fringe requires a lot of maintenance and work. If a client with curly hair came to me wanting the curtain fringe look I would recommend they go for a slightly longer version.”

What is the maintenance for a curtain fringe? 

If you’ve had a fringe before and detested the upkeep, it doesn’t get much better with the curtain kind.

“This style overall generally requires regular trims to ensure it looks fresh, and requires daily styling if you have wavier hair,” says Rota.

Pulitano seconds this, saying trims are as often as every 5-6 weeks, and “for some hair types a quick [daily] blow dry [is needed] to bring the shape out.

How to style a curtain fringe

If you’re still committed, your morning routine will look a little like this:

“Spray on some volumising spray (like the O&M Atonic Thickening Spray, $31),” instructs Pulitano. “Then, take a round brush and blow-dry straight down and under with a slight bend. Once blow-dried, finish by ruffling your fringe with your fingers to give it that curtain effect.”

Better yet, if you’ve got a Dyson Airwrap ($799 at handy, Rota says the round brush attachment will become your BFF, blow-drying and shaping your fringe single-handed.

Check out our guide to blow-drying your curtain fringe for more detail.

For curtain fringe first-timers

If this is your first curtain fringe experience, Rota recommends starting off with a wispier front as a trial run. “Don’t get too excited in case you go for the big chop and hate it, ” she says. 

“Keep the sides long enough to still tuck behind your ears. Then if you love it, you can go for a shorter and more solid curtain fringe.”

Who shouldn’t get a curtain fringe?

Being a style that’s hard to carry, Pulitano says “a curtain fringe won’t suit all face types.”

“I would avoid it for round shaped faces and square jawlines. I would also avoid it if you have a strong cowlick, as your fringe will jump up in the centre and split in the wrong place all the time.”

His final words of advice? “Because there are several variations of the curtain fringe, make sure you ask your hairdresser what would suit your face and hair type best. Finally, If you decide to go ahead with it make sure that you commit to regular trims.”

Bookings can be made here for Headcase Hair Paddington and Headcase Hair Potts Point.