Does Long Hair Make You Look Fatter?

does long hair make you fatter

A new hairstyle can really change your appearance. A lot. That’s because your hair frames your face, balancing out your face or putting emphasis on certain features. 

Your hairstyle can make you look slimmer, older, more confident, or younger – it can even change the way others see you or the way you think about yourself. In fact, some hairstylists say that short hair can make the face look thinner, as long as they use the right style for an individual’s features.

You might be wondering, “Does long hair make you look fatter?” That’s what we’re going to find out in today’s post. Plus, we’ve rounded out some hairstyles or haircuts that can hide a few extra pounds. Let’s get started.

Basic Face Shapes and Choosing the Right Hairstyle

To better answer the question of whether long hair can make you look fat, it’s best to first know the basic face shapes. The reason is – your face shape can significantly alter how certain hairstyles will look on you.

Basically, the face shape is divided into four parts. The jawline, the face length, the forehead, and the cheekbone width. To identify your face shape, know what is the widest part of your face. If it’s your cheekbones, then you probably have a round face.  

On the other hand, a strong jawline usually means you have a rectangle or square face shape. If your jawline comes to a point, then perhaps you have a heart-shaped face. Now let’s go and take a look at the 6 basic face shapes to help you pick the right hairstyle!

1. Round 

A round face is pretty symmetrical. This face shape has about the same length and width and there’s a round jawline and chin. 

Here are some facial traits to help you decide if you have a round face shape: Your face shape tends to be circular in appearance with no major edges or angles or your cheekbones are not particularly prominent. 

Long layers of hair are the most flattering to this face shape. Side-swept bangs likewise add length to a round face.

Celebrities with a round face shape include Ginnifer Goodwin, Mila Kunis, Chrissy Metz, and Chrissy Teigen.

2. Oval/ Oblong

Think you have an oval- or oblong-shaped face? You might be right if your face meets these criteria: It is longer than it is wide, you have a round jawline or chin, the lower half of your face seems longer than the top. Moreover, your forehead is typically the widest part of your face, while the other features remain soft and round. 

Any length of haircut looks great on an oval or oblong face shape. Adding layers near the cheekbones will also help accentuate the chin, lips, and cheekbones.

Celebrities with oval or oblong face shapes are Kate Middleton, Jessica Alba, Julianne Moore, and Oliva Munn.

3. Square

The key to a square face shape is the jawline. With this type of face shape, your jaw, cheekbones, and forehead will be the same width, and your jaw may have sharp angles to it. 

A square face shape is the same in appearance as a round face, but it has a more pronounced jawline or has minimal curves to it. 

Soft bangs, deep side parts, and texture help balance the square face shapes. Longer hair also looks great with its powerful and more angular jawline.

Celebrities with a square face shape include Olivia Wilde, Cameron Diaz,  Lucy Liu, and Demi Lovato.

4. Diamond

Diamond faces have their unique traits. They have a small chin and a narrow forehead. Their cheekbones are the widest part of their face. Hairstyles that work best with this face shape have fullness at the chin and narrower side. This face can add straight bangs to shorten the face and bob makes a great haircut too.

Celebrities with diamond face shapes include Tyra Banks, Scarlett Johansson, Jennifer Lopez, and Liz Hurley.

5. Heart

This face shape is characterized by a narrower chin and a wider forehead. Keeping the hairstyle fuller around the jaw helps add weight to the chin. Adding side-swept bangs also helps disguise the width of the forehead.

Celebrities with heart-shaped faces include Kerry Washington, Reese Witherspoon, Lili Reinhart, and Ruby Rose.

6. Pear

Pear shape face is also sometimes called a triangular face shape. It is characterized by a narrow and small forehead and a larger jawline. Long hair can help disguise the prominence of the jawline. 

If you have a pear shaped-face and are wondering what kind of hairstyle suits you, consider adding volume to the top to add fullness to the top portion of your face.

Celebrities with pear face shape include Jennifer Aniston, Meghan Markle, Kelly Osbourne, and Billie Piper.

So, Does Long Hair Make You Look Fatter?

The short answer is no.  Long hair even instantly slims most face shapes, but there are still factors to consider, such as a person’s height and weight. 

If you are short, then the recommended hair length to make you look slimmer is about six to seven inches below your shoulders. Long, voluminous, and loose waves that frame your face can narrow your look. 

Hairstyles That Make You Look Thinner/ Slimmer 

Now, here’s the fun part. Find the best hairstyles that can help slim your face:

Face Framing Layers

This is one of the most slimming and flattering haircuts for any face shape. The face-framing layer follows the contours of the cheekbone as well as the jawline to give you an instant hair contouring effect.


Adding a splash of color to your long straight hair or curly or wavy hair is always a good idea to slim your face and make you appear thinner. Obviously, we’re not referring to putting hot pink streaks on your long or short hair but some natural highlights. Make it subtle as much as possible.

The reason why we believe this is one of the best hairstyles that make you look a few pounds thinner is that it will brighten your face, giving it a thinner or younger look. Moreover, the juxtaposition of dark and light in your hair mimics stripes. 

Such a vertical stripe draws the eye up and down, making the face appear slimmer. Highlight also gives your loose waves or tight curls volume and shine, which is always a good thing.

Related post: Best Professional Hair Color to Cover Gray for Brunettes]

Curly or Wavy Hair

Giving your hair a wavy or curly effect is a great way to make your face look slimmer. Voluminous, loose, and long waves frame your face and narrow your look. 

You can try the messy updo or maintain volume in the lower section of your hair. This creates a balanced look and when your hair is voluminous, your face will look slimmer and smaller in comparison.

If your face is wider at the cheekbones or forehead, we recommend you to try having long bangs in the center because it will softly frame your face. Should you prefer tying up your hair, go for a high ponytail or a high bun with volume at the crown.

Asymmetrical Bob

For those with shorter hair, we recommend they try an asymmetrical bob. It sure is going to awaken a sense of confidence and power within you.

This kind of hairstyle is modern and sleek, where the hair is longer in the front and short in the back. Parting your bob in the middle will also make you look slimmer because it elongates your face while the deep side of the badass short bob conceals some of your cheeks.

This haircut is especially perfect for working women who do not have the time to manage their waist-length locks or intricate hairstyles or they simply wanted to give off an air that they’re in total control.

Voluminous Top Knot

A voluminous top knot, also called the ballerina bun, also looks good for those with longer hair because it creates a vertical illusion that lengthens your face.

Paired with the same face-framing tendrils or worn slicked back, you’ve got yourself a super easy hairstyle. Unless you’re working with a lot of hair, just be careful not to make the pony or bun too tight. Volume is your friend in achieving a slimmer look using this hairstyle.

Waterfall Twist and Milkmaid Braid

If you think there’s no way you’re going to achieve this, then you’re wrong. Just be patient in the beginning and you’ll appreciate the stunning and slimming effect this hairstyle will create for you.

Not to mention it drapes your air perfectly around your face, slimming down its roundness. Just make sure you have a texturizing spray, bobby pins, light-hold hairspray, sea salt spray, and a fine-toothed comb. 

We also recommend you to try the popular milkmaid braid, which is on almost every hair YouTuber’s channel nowadays. This braid is simple to recreate and will completely divert the attention from your face.

The Half Updo

Are you attending a fancy dinner party or a wedding? If it’s a formal occasion, then this is the hairstyle for it. The hair updo makes your hair slimmer because the volume is added on top. 

Up-do With ‘Flyaways’

To soften your face, you may also try the up-do with flyaways. This is where you do some kind of up-do but leave bangs out or a few hair strands on the side.


Go for hairstyles that have lots of movement and texture, such as Demi Lovato’s piece-y bob. A hairstyle like such will make your face look fuller and your overall appearance thinner. You can also keep the longer layers by adding a mid-length shaggy bob.

[Related post: Best Extensions for Thin Hair]


Diet and exercise are not the only paths to a slimmer appearance. Style and fashion are great ways to create the illusion of looking slimmer too and these hairstyles we listed above can work wonders.

So, don’t be afraid to grow your hair or to even cut it short to shed some pounds around your face and appear slimmer.

To sum up, long hair doesn’t exactly make you look fat, but it tends to look more slenderizing than short hair. Just try adding a new hairstyle to revamp your long locks.

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