3 Lessons Learned from Getting Bangs

Published in: Hair, Just For Fun

I’ve had other brushes with bangs, like the time my mom cut my hair into a lopsided Dorothy Hamill bowl cut, or the gravity defying ‘do I wore for a time in my hair bear teenage years (that thing ensnared more insects than a Venus Flytrap!), but none of them prepared me for the full-on blunt-cut bangs I embraced a few months ago.


And that’s because they weren’t just bangs. Dude. They were BANGS! — all caps, bold, with an exclamation mark.

I’ve liked having them these past months, but I gotta say — I wish I’d given more thought to what I was getting into before I took the plunge, because these real deal bangs have been a commitment.

For starters, there’s the monthly trims, and this is where it helps to have a stylist who does them for free. Ideally, he or she would also be someone you like to hang out with, because you’ll be visiting them often. Then there’s all of the doo-hickery involved in keeping them neat and tidy. To be blunt (ha!), there’s a lot.

So if you’re contemplating a jump to blunt, consider these three lessons I learned from getting bangs.

1. Expect to Itch

Good grief! The first week was the worst. I spent every waking moment resisting the urge to scratch my forehead and brows. It was hella annoying (coincidentally, this was when I started referring to my bangs as Lloyd Christmas), like that day I went to work in the city wearing ill-fitting underwear. I couldn’t really do anything about it at the time (going commando was not an option), so I just had to grin and bear it.

Thankfully, the itching subsided, and now Lloyd only gets on my nerves for a day or two after a trim.

2. Embrace the Chaos!

Lloyd doesn’t like physical activity. He prefers to sit still somewhere protected from the elements. What I mean to say is, bangs have a mind of their own. They part when/where you don’t want them to, get obnoxiously poofy and regularly stick out in strange ways. And you can pretty much forget about looking like a sexy Victoria’s Secret model in the mornings because that’s when they really misbehave.

If you have trouble giving up control (like moi), you could be in for quite the challenge.

3. Go with the Flow

Not to get too zen about it, but bangs are always in a state of flux. You can fight that change, or go with the flow. I recommend the later.

About three weeks after each trim, Lloyd goes on strike; that’s when the sh*t really hits the fan. By that point, my bangs have grown too long to wear brushed forward anymore (the hair gets in my eyes and I feel like a sheepdog), so I’ll start sweeping them to the side. And if I haven’t gotten a trim by week four or five, I’m usually wearing headbands and hats pretty much every day (and counting down the days to my next trim).

If you like to switch up your hairstyles often, you might be a good candidate for bangs, but if you like to wear the same no-nonsense look every day, buyer beware! 🙂

In all seriousness, bangs can be a pain, but I think they’re great, as long as you don’t mind having to put up with Lloyd Christmas along the way.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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  1. Vijaya says:

    1. Lesson I learned from getting bangs: always cut ’em yourself. F’real, hairdressers always make ’em too short!
    Vijaya recently posted … Geo Nudy Lenses in Grey

  2. BettyS says:

    I had my hair cut into bangs when I was pregnant with my son, and I’m sure glad I did. After his birth, I had the hormone dump and massive fallout, and when the hair started to grow back, I got the wispy short pieces around my forehead that would’ve looked really weird if I didn’t have bangs to cover them up.

    My bangs were blunt like yours, but I’ve since had them styled where they’re the same length as yours in the middle, but starting halfway across the eyes and down to the temples, they get sloppy-choppy longer so the longest pieces are down to the bottom of my ears. They look really good with long hair (mine’s curly), you can brush them left or right or get them wind-blown and they still look good, and you don’t go through the horrible styling period before you see the hairdresser again. This style looks really good with a ponytail, too.

    For curly girls doing the low-poo or no-poo method – if you’re wanting bangs, you’ve got to at least shampoo your bangs every day or use a dry shampoo, because they will get oily.

    The only downside I can find is they seem to rub off my eyebrow pencil. I use the MUFE dark brown pencil, so if you’ve got suggestions for something longer wear, I’m all ears!

  3. Erica says:

    As a hairdresser, not all of us cut bangs too short! I’ve literally had bangs my entire life (33 years!), & the longer you have them, the better they behave. Oh, sure, some mornings if I sleep on my face I wake up with There’s Something About Mary hair (you know what I’m talking about), & windy days can suck (especially here in Kansas-it’s like all of a sudden, I’ve got bad 80s mall bangs!), but they get better with age.
    I don’t usually blow dry my hair, but I almost always dry my bangs. For a blunt bang, the “flat-wrap” technique works best-first go to one side, then the other, with a Denman or paddle brush, until they’re completely dry. It usually takes about 2 minutes.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Erica,

      My stylist does a fab job of cutting Lloyd just the right length. She recently taught me that same technique w/the paddle brush and it’s been a whole new world!

      How long have you been a stylist? Do you do both cuts and color? What’s your favorite?

      • Erica says:

        Hi! 😀
        I’ve been doing hair for years, it’s only been in the past year I’ve gone to school for it. Might as well make money doing something I love!
        I do cuts & color (along with waxing, makeup, & updos), although I love to cut hair, my favorite thing in the world is to color it-I’m a huge science nerd so the chemistry involved is pretty rad. Also, being a product whore, this is perhaps the best possible profession.

  4. Grace says:

    Bangs are part of my signature style. My hair is super thick and straight so I wear very dense, blunt bangs and I love them. It’s hard work sometimes but nevertheless I love them.

    I’m growing them out right now to change up my style a bit but I’ll miss them. I would also like to get pregnant soon and want more of a wash and go style.

  5. Jessi says:

    I haven’t had bangs since I was 3 years old and I know for a fact they wouldn’t work for me. I’m one of those “no-nonsense look every day” types of people. It’s kind of a miracle that I’m obsessed with makeup considering how low maintenance I am with every other aspect of my appearance. Seriously, I have 2 pairs of shoes that I wear. 1 pair of flip flops and one pair of Converse. I have a few other pairs but they literally haven’t been touched in years.

    I still love that you call your bangs Lloyd Christmas. It cracks me up every time.
    Jessi recently posted … Darling Clandestine Fragrances Thoughts and Review

    • im the same way, makeup and beauty products obsessed but ill wear the same skate sneakers to work long past getting holes in them and all my jeans have stains and sag in the wrong places 🙂

  6. Chris25 says:

    I was forced to wear bangs as a kid until I was maybe 12. My mom always cut my hair, and she thought my sister and I should have bangs. If you look at our childhood photos, we look so furious because we had to wear those bangs. LOL.

  7. amy says:

    I have always have bangs and I like to change it up by cutting it various styles over the years, ranging from very short baby bangs, to round/bowl shaped, blunt and wispy. I have a super high forward and bangs hides my huge forehead. Occasionally I have tried to grow it out for a change
    ( when the mid part trend came along) or I just want a longer side part, but I would always end up hating the growing out stage by the time the hair gets past my nose because the hair would always curl and flip. Nowadays, I go in for monthly bang trims every 3-4 weeks, so my hair looks presentable between hair cuts.

  8. Paris B says:

    I’ve gone from having bangs to having no bangs or a fringe as I’d call it and I must say that having a fringe always makes me look a lot younger 😀 It doesn’t make me itch although maintenance is a right pain. Don’t trim it often enough and I end up with a centre part. Fail! 😛
    Paris B recently posted … Holy Schmoly! Is that really snail mucus in the Tony Moly Intense Repair Snail Cream?

  9. Rads says:

    Sighhh…I tried them ONCE…they sure do have a mind of their own 😐 😐
    Rads recently posted … Pic A Colour!

  10. Joy says:

    Okay, so I feel the need to share a very embarrassing story from when I was four. In my defense, I was doing *some* critical thinking. I had bangs, my sister had bangs, my mom, my grandma, etc… Two of my friends, and their sisters and moms, did not. I thought it was genetic whether or not you had bangs. It wasn’t till I said something to my sister that I found out bangs was just hair cut short. It was however a game changer. I very rarely had bangs after that; I begged my mom to let me grow them out.

  11. lisa says:

    i love this post. the truth about bangs! i love having them because i feel like it gives me some style even when i don’t do much with the rest of my hair but they can be a pain! thanks for telling it like it is.
    lisa recently posted … Travel wear

  12. i look really good with the side bang but i have curly hair and im WAY TOO LAZY to want to iron my bangs out every day. i had to grow them out to stop looking homeless and crazy. at least i fixed the crazy part…. 😉

  13. I don’t have bangs (Don’t look good in ’em because of my long face shape), but I do have a side fringe. While the rest of my hair is pretty easy to maintain in general, my fringe requires some extra maintenance- namely, I have to straighten it with my mini GHD iron or else it’ll poof 😛 Then I need to trim it more often than I trim my hair. It does itch above my eyebrow a day after the trim but otherwise I’m fine. Love the fringe, though.

  14. Jill says:

    When I first glanced at this post I was scrolling and accidentally read it “3 Lessons Learned from Gang Bangs”…WHOOPS!!!

    I briefly had bangs too–I never got over the itching. Man, was it terrible!!! Never again.

  15. Advah says:

    I’ve got curly bangs and I love them – used to be scared of them until I realised bangs don’t necessarily have to be blunt, and the right stylist will cut them so my hair falls in little ringlets as opposed to a puffy mess on my forehead.

    And if you’re scared of bangs, start with a side swept version and see how you feel! 🙂

    But yes, the itching… Used to get on my NERVES. NERVES! Seriously makes you want to cry out of anger!

  16. Lisa says:

    I have basically had bangs my entire life, with the occasional respite from them in the summer. My truth about bangs? Bring on the scalp screen! I tend to grow mine out in the summer for I have unintentionally blistered my scalp from sun exposure one too many times! It also makes wearing a motorcycle helmet a tickle bit less destructive to my “do.” I also hate how much they pull oil off my forehead. But what I do love is how sophisticated they make me feel. Most people refuse to believe I am near 37 when I rock them as well. I love your new do. I think you look gorgeous!

  17. Kim says:

    Lloyd isn’t right for me for many other reasons, mainly because of a stubborn cowlick and a high forehead with heart shaped face. Just all traits that make blunt bangs totally unattractive. I’ve had wispy, longer, angled bangs many times and that seems to work. I did try the blunt a couple of times, thinking things might change, but alas. 🙂 This is probably common knowledge to everyone else, but I recently had the revelation that people who look good in hats, usually look good with full on bangs. Those who don’t… don’t.

    • Erica says:

      I’ve been doing hair for years, it’s only been in the past year I’ve gone to school for it 🙂 Might as well make money doing something I love!
      I do cuts & color (along with waxing, makeup, & updos), although I love to cut hair, my favorite thing in the world is to color it-I’m a huge science nerd so the chemistry involved is pretty rad. Also, being a product whore, this is perhaps the best possible profession.

  18. Nina says:

    i had bangs almost all of last year and i grew them out. short bangs are really difficult to style. it doesnt help that i have a curl right where my bangs are …

    however …. when my hair gets longer, im going to get it styled so my bangs reach my chin. that should be easier!

  19. Angelic Mariposa Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ says:

    I have been told by my husband never to get bangs again because of 1-3 especially 2, I cannot embrace the chaos. My hair is straight and I’ve always parted it to the side, thus, my bangs would not stay together *sigh* but they look great on you!! Sometimes I miss them (on a good day) but growing them out is a fate worse than death! Love your blog Karen!! From the moment I saw you as Wonder Woman I knew this was a place that I felt comfy. I’m not a frequent commenter at any blog but I’ve commented here the most!!

  20. I love the look of bangs on others, but I had them when I was in grade 7 and they just weren’t for me. They looked fine, but you’re right about them being high maintenance. I tried to live with them. I even was accommodating to them. 😛 But bangs and I just didn’t work out.

    Even now that I’m an adult, I think about getting bangs again in case it’s okay this time around…but then I remember that it’s a LOT of work for the upkeep…and I used to get so annoyed when the wind would blow and create a gap in my bangs. Hehe, it REALLY bothered me.

    Kudos to anyone who can keep and maintain them! They usually look so edgy or sophisticated. Sigh…
    Swatch And Learn recently posted … OPI Teenage Dream Swatches & Review

  21. Iram says:

    I practically had a side fringe all of my life…. until last year when I decided to grow it. I hated the way it was always in my face and am kind of glad now that it doesn’t obscure my vision lol.
    I can’t help but miss it though… i want my fringe back 🙁
    Iram recently posted … Eid & Other Things.

  22. Kimberly says:

    I <3 bangs. I put up with them through driving my convertible, and them curling everytime i remotely swear. #2 is completely true for all of my hair 🙂

  23. Naj says:

    I had bangs last year and I paid great attention to them for a week I believe, and then I gave up and pushed them aside. I’m not one to go for regular trims, so they started poking my eye. Unless you have perfectly straight hair(I’m curly/wavy), bangs are a BEECH. =X

  24. Kate & Zena says:

    I have bangs and I hear you Karen! Another irritation of bangs is if you have a cowlick there, you fight it constantly. I always have a big gap right about the arch of my right eyebrow because there’s a cowlick there and I’m ALWAYS moving my bangs back over it!

    However, there are lots of benefits of bangs that I’ve learned:
    1. They help camouflage/balance out high or wide foreheads. I’ve got the stereotypical German high forehead and bangs really camouflage that. Heidi Klum may embrace her high forehead, but I need some coverage.

    2. They bring all the focus to your peepers. That is, if you cut your bangs to your eyebrows. I love that (my eyes are my best feature), but I always get mine cut a half inch above and do the dorky stage because I hate going to the salon go trims every three weeks! I try to space mine out as long as possible!

    3. If you have something you don’t like (like a prominent jaw), bangs can soften them.

    • Karen says:

      You bring up some great points, Kate! I have a pretty high forehead too… I love how bangs seem to balance out my face.

      • Kate & Zena says:

        I just felt that bangs needed a little lovin’ too! The first three happen to me too, but so many people don’t see the benefit of them! They feel they’ll look dorky in them. It’s really about the type of bangs you get. You have to think about your hair and your face. Blunt bangs look super dorky on me, believe or not. I don’t have the thickness for it, but you do. Mine are the face framing kind like Olivia Wilde’s were in House (y’know, where they get longer near the temples and blend into the hair.) Those are best on me!

  25. Marie says:

    I always get bangs and then I regret it when I remember how sweaty my forehead gets. 🙁

  26. Stephanie says:

    I got blunt bangs early last year and I look soooo much better than I did with my old boring, bang-less hair haha. I do cut them myself though, the lady who cut my hair showed me exactly how to trim them correctly so whenever they start reaching sheepdog status I bust out some scissors and go to town. If I’m lazy though or they just aren’t cooperating one day, I just swoop them back into a little poof and pin them down, it’s super cute. :]

  27. Krisabelle says:

    I’m a BCB (Bowl Cut Bangs) Survivor; I rocked those bad boys from birth! My mom enjoyed them, but around age 15, I decided I was done with them and I’ve been fringe-free ever since! I have oily hair and an oily t-zone, so by the end of the day my bangs would always be hanging lifelessly on my forehead begging for a shampoo. I do still get whims where I’d like bangs for a day or two with no commitment, so I’m thinking of ordering the Ken Paves clip-in bangs from Amazon. Has anyone else tried them? http://www.zappos.com/jessica-simpson-hairdo-clip-on-bangs-chestnut

    Karen, I do love that you named your bangs, lol!

  28. Sam says:

    I had the blunt Beyonce bangs when she got hers did – and I LOVED them.

    I don’t really recall itching, and I have already resigned myself to a life of hair chaos (I have what they call, think, wild and unruly hair – it says so on my shampoo) – but I didn’t really notice tons of missbehaviour – though I did have the occasional ‘Something About Mary’ moment…

    I have been working side bangs for a while – but that just kind of evolved out of an Angled Bob cut..

  29. Jen in VA says:

    Beware of the Cowlick….worse thing ever. Blowdry them immediately out of the shower before the rest of your hair, not with a round brush but with a flat paddle brush…..pull with the paddle brush the bangs to one side and blast heat to the roots then switch and pull the bangs to the other side and put the heat on the other side of the roots. Should help with cowlick that encroaches on bangs…always happens on my hair as it is baby fine in nature yet wants to get a wave to it. Love bangs and that it helps accentuate the eyes and hide my plasma size forehead.

  30. DaenaCat says:

    Well first off, I think they look great on you!! I think my hair works naturally for a fringe as I’ve had one my whole life and just can’t do without one now — makes me feel naked to not have them! They’re also almost zero-maintenance for me. No need to style them, they just lay there nicely on their own. I just finished cutting a very deep, dramatic mod-looking asymmetrical fringe and that’s a change for me as I’ve mostly had straight-across bangs. But, it’s fun!

  31. Ru says:

    You’re absolutly right

  32. Ru says:

    Whoops, hit enter by mistake!
    You are right, they require some maintenance. I realized that bangs don’t work for everyone- not even me sometimes! They’re great when they are great- I like to get bangs in the winter because it’s too hot in DC to have them in the summer they fall flat. I used to turn a lot of heads with my bangs, and it went really well with my boringly straight hair. But I gained a bit of weight and got bangs and they made me look awful. My SIL copied me (though she’ll never admit it) and got bangs but it looks pretty horrible on her. It’s really not for everyone, and the maintenance is either worth it or too annoying.

  33. Dea says:

    I have had my bangs since I have hair! Less bangs, more bangs, straight bangs, side-cut bangs… bangs, bangs, bangs! They are kind of my own trade mark! I love them!

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  35. Jenn says:

    I just got bangs myself. My stylist at Dominic Michael Salon made them a tad shaggy, for a hip, modern look. She taught me how to trim them up myself which is KEY! Otherwise, you’ll always be in the salon. I just go in every 6 weeks for my regular trim, but I save money on my bang trimmings.

  36. amber says:

    i love my bangs, they behaive better than the rest of my hair! lol, weird i know 🙂

  37. Adi says:

    Im in middle school, all my life i thought i was ugly! Everyone called me ugly, then last year i tried giving my self blunt bangs and i didnt cut them enough and i was scared to cut them even more so i wore them as side swept bangs and all the ugly comments went away! Afterwards people started calling me cute! That was a nice change! People also call me a smurf because i wear alot of blue and im short for my age, but they called me that even before i got my fringe. Im perfectly fine with my fringe now and i dont think im gonna change to blunt bangs. And i dont think of myself as ugly anymore! 🙂

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