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Bangs emphasize the eyes and cheekbones, conceal unruly hairlines, and create visual balance. But despite these benefits, most women with natural curls avoid fringe, afraid of creating a styling nightmare. The gorgeous styles pictured here wouldn’t bee the same without their face-framing perimeter, which adds softness and structure to shapes both long and short. With the right products and styling tricks, your curls can create a beautiful, brow-dusting border. Read on to learn how. –– Laura Martin

Tip: Think big. Straggly, wispy bangs are much more likely to misbehave than a thicker, heavier shape. The weight will help the bangs lay closer to the head and encourage them to form coils.

Tip: Go long and blend. Bangs should be cut, when the hair is wet, between the tip of the nose and the jaw line to ensure they don’t shrink up above the brow. The fringe should blend into the rest of the cut, flowing into the layers; a disconnected bang can create an awkward chunk.

Tip: At home, straight out of the shower while hair is still wet, comb bangs down, into desired shape. Apply curl definer and coil into a few large section. Air dry.

Special thanks to Laura Martin for this post. Laura is a professional hair stylist, former senior educator at ARROJO cosmetology school, and a creative non-fiction MFA student at Georgia College, Milledgeville, GA

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