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When you look at the place where your facial skin meets your hair, aka your hairline, you can thank your parents for whatever shape your hairline may be. That's because hairline shape has to do with genetics -- but that doesn't mean you can't change up your look. From continuous to a widow's peak to even receding, identifying your hairline shape helps you determine how to style your hair and if you need a little extra help to regrow lost hair.
If your mom or dad has a widow’s peak, genetics say that you likely do too. That’s because a widow’s peak hairline is a dominant trait. You can see the widow's peak -- a slight “V” shape at the very top middle of your forehead. Widow’s peaks vary from subtle to pronounced -- Marilyn Monroe's was famous. Some ladies like to show off their widow’s peaks, but if you don’t, there are some hairstyling options that can cover the extra “V.” Heavy bangs -- either a fringe all the way across your face or ones that start with a far side part -- can cover your widow's peak. Opting for the side-swept bangs means the hair should hit around your ear level to make the right proportion. One hairstyle you shouldn’t do is the center part because it will just bring more attention to your widow’s peak.
Sometimes your hairline seems to curve without much rhyme or reason -- that's the case when you have a cowlick hairline. A cowlick occurs when your hair follicles grow in more than one direction, which means that one part of your hairline can seem to grow in one direction while another part in close proximity grows a different way. If your hair is shorter, the cowlick may cause your hair on one part of your hairline to stick up. Always tell your stylist if you have a cowlick because he may need to style your hair a certain way to keep your hair from popping up.
Hairlines that have an unbroken line are known as “continuous” or “straight” hairlines. This hairline type is the result of your parents passing along nondominant genes that give your hairline a smooth, even appearance. You have a continuous hairline if your hairline is even and does not have any peaks or valleys.
Although women don’t have as many difficulties with receding hairlines, it is possible to experience a hairline that starts to move toward the back of your head. This is a genetic issue that causes your hairline to start moving back from its original place. You may notice your hair starts to thin in this area as it recedes.
Your hairline isn't just how straight across it is -- your hairline also can high or low in relation to its placement on your forehead. A high or low hairline typically is a personal definition because you may feel as if your hairline sits lower on your forehead, as if it is in close proximity to your eyebrows. Your hairline also can go the other way and be higher on your forehead. This is different from a receding hairline because you would be born with a high hairline while a receding hairline changes over time.