5 Stylish Ways to Part Your Hair
The Middle Part
Why and how: The signature style of ’70s beauties, like Joni Mitchell, this straight-down-the-center look is a chic option for any occasion or face shape, says Paul Warren, the New York City hairstylist who created the hairdos that you see here. “It’s a classic,” he says. For the most precise part with less risk of snagging, use the tip of a rattail comb to divide hair. (This applies for most of these looks, unless otherwise directed.) “If you try to part hair using the comb’s teeth, you'll encounter more tangles,” says Kevin Mancuso, the creative director of Nexxus Salon Hair Care.
The Diagonal Part
Why and how: For this effect, which adds polish to a chignon and slims a wide face, divide hair from above the outer corner of one brow to the back of the crown on the opposite side. Slick hair back into a bun or a ponytail.
The Deep Side Part
Why and how: Cousin to the side part but far more dramatic (think day versus night), a deep division is a natural volumizer for hair of any kind, since more hair on one side equals more body by definition. If your face is slightly round, allow the side with extra hair to fall slightly across your face, as shown.
The Zigzag Part
Why and how: A jagged line is fun and casual and flatters any face shape. Better yet, it's a great way to camouflage overgrown roots. Highlights and color are generally applied to hair that's parted in the middle or slightly to the side, so obscuring the part can obscure the line of demarcation. Warren used his fingers to move narrow sections of hair to either side until a zigzag was formed.
The Side Part
Why and how: “Almost everyone has hair that falls slightly to one side or the other naturally,” says Mancuso. “So this look complements most, regardless of face shape.” For a casual feel, use your fingers to part your hair rather than a comb, says Warren. Another side benefit: Switching your part from one side to the other can mask thinning.
Keep Your Hair in Line
To train stubborn strands to lie flat when you change your part, wet hair, part as desired, then work mousse into the roots, says Kristan Serafino, a celebrity hairstylist in New York City. Use a comb to hold down the roots firmly as you blow them dry.