A Short Haircut for Thick, Coarse Hair for Ladies

Coarse-haired Rihanna wears flirty layers at the 2011 Billboard Music Awards.

Photo: Isaac Brekken/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

One thing’s for sure: you’re definitely not the lady whose bathroom is stocked with volume-boosting products. Because your hair’s naturally thick and coarse, you’re probably more concerned with taming it down than pumping it up. Luckily, a short cut is the perfect option for you, but it can be tricky to make the leap. Choose a style that works with your hair’s texture, thickness and your face shape.

Types of Short Cuts

Want an easy, wash-and-go style? A super-short, multilayered pixie cut may be the perfect fit: it’s low-maintenance, and your hair’s natural thickness will keep it from looking flat and sparse. You can also go short and spiky: Just ask for a little extra length on top and less at the sides. If you’re not feeling quite that bold, opt for more length at the nape of the neck and plenty of layers in front to highlight your face. Finally, a chin-length or shoulder-dusting bob haircut is a classic style that works wonderfully with thick tresses.

Tips for Thick, Coarse Hair

Though there’s an exception to every rule, it’s helpful to know which types of cuts usually work (and which don’t) on your hair type. If your hair is thick, coarse and straight, remove some of the bulk by opting for a layered do. If your hair’s thick, coarse and wavy or curly, keep layers minimal. Too many different lengths may make your hair spiral out of control. Bangs may also be just the touch you need to top off your perfect do and keep your thick hair from falling too heavily around your face. Beware, though: if your hair’s curly, bangs may require some coaxing to lie smooth against your forehead.

Your Face Shape

The best short cut for you also depends on your face shape. Extremely short styles like pixies generally look best on ladies with soft, delicate features (think oval and round faces). Chin-length bobs are great for ladies with heart-shaped faces because the layers balance out a thin or weak jawline. Chin length can also work on ladies with square faces, but keep your layers bountiful around the jawline to avoid a severe look.

Thinning Your Tresses

Regardless of the cut you choose, if you want to thin out your full-bodied tresses, ask your stylist to use thinning shears. Thinning shears cut the bulk out of your do, making it more manageable for styling. There’s one exception, however: If you have curly hair, avoid thinning shears and razors because they’ll contribute to frizz. Whether your hair’s straight or curly, use smoothing conditioner or styling serum at home to keep your coarse tresses from poofing up.

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