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How to Style Curtain Bangs | Step-by-Step Guide

If you just returned from the hair salon with a set of curtain bangs, you’re understandably curious about how to care for them. We’ll give you easy, actionable advice on how to style curtain bangs so that you can leave your house feeling confident with your new look.

How to Style Curtain Bangs: A Summary

Creating bouncy, swooping curtain bangs requires only a few materials that you likely already have in your bathroom. By following the steps below, we’ll help you understand when — and when not — to use them.

  1. Dry your curtain bangs
  2. Create a “C” shape
  3. Curl your bangs (optional)
  4. Apply hair spray
  5. Touch up as needed

Are you ready to “wow” those around you? Read on to discover how to style curtain bangs quickly and easily.

How to Style Curtain Bangs in 5 Easy Steps

Never again will you have to worry about leaving your house with mediocre curtain bangs after you follow these steps.

1. Dry Your Curtain Bangs

Ideally, styling curtain bangs starts with a blow dryer. However, it’s possible to skip this step and jump right in with a flat iron. When drying your bangs after a shower, start by drying your curtain bangs first.

Although that may seem counterintuitive given that you don’t want to mess up their style by blowing air on the rest of your hair, your bangs are thinner than the hair at the back of your head. Therefore, they dry first.

As you can imagine, this can create a mess if your curtain bangs dry before you get to them. The last thing you want is to fight with them after they get frizzy and take on a shape of their own. To dry your curtain bangs like a pro, use a round brush and apply your dryer’s concentrator attachment.

Doing so will help you achieve a more tame and smooth curtain bang appearance. When you wrap your hair around the round brush, point the hairdryer downwards. That way, it’ll help avoid frizzy hair.

Once you complete the steps here, you can flip your curtain bangs back to create a swooped appearance.

Alternatively, if you ultimately want to end with a messy curtain bang look, use your fingers to move your bangs back and forth as you blow-dry them. As a result, your hair will remain looser and flowier. In either case, the goal is to ultimately have your curtain bangs frame your face.

Option for Curly Hair

Feel free to ignore the information above if you have a 2C – 4C hair type and would like to rock your curtain bangs with your natural waves.

Instead, detangle your hair with a wide-toothed comb or your fingers in the shower. Then, pat your hair with a towel until it’s damp and apply any curl-defining cream of your preference.

That way, your curtain bangs will take on a naturally wavy texture as your hair dries. Once you complete this step, head down to step number four for details on ensuring your bangs maintain their beautiful look throughout the day.

2. Create a “C” Shape

Two popular options exist for creating a “C” shape with bangs:

  • Pinning your hair with clips
  • Using a flat iron

Let’s take a closer look at each of these so you can determine the best fit option for you.

Pinning Your Hair With Clips

If you don’t like the hassle of using a flat iron or if you’re going for a wavier curtain bang look, pinning your hair is an excellent choice. To do this, part your hair in the middle.

Then, about two fingers away from the right side of your hair part, pinch a triangle-shaped portion of your hair at the scalp. You should do this along the hairline of your forehead. 

Next, use a creaseless clip to hold the pinched hair in place. From there, grab the tips of your curtain bangs and pull them to the top of your head where the clip is. Hold those tips in place with another clip. 

Repeat this same process on the left side of your curtain bangs. Then, after both sides have a couple of minutes sitting in their C-shaped clipped position, gently release the clips.

Using a Flat Iron

If you prefer a sleeker and smoother look for your curtain bangs, a flat iron can help you achieve this. For starters, choose a flat iron that has titanium plates and an adjustable temperature.

Ideally, you want to set your flat iron between 350 – 375 degrees Fahrenheit for thin hair and 400 – 450 degrees for coarse or curly hair.

Hair burning is a real concern when using a flat iron. However, research shows that choosing a high-quality heat protectant can help reduce the risk of thermally changing hair protein.

Then, part your hair in the middle and divide each side of your curtain bangs, forming a top and bottom layer. Use clips to hold the hair in place that you’re not working with.

Starting with the top layer, move your flat iron through your hair, forming a large “C” shape in your hair by gently turning your wrist as you move from the roots to the tips. Do the same with the bottom layer before following these same steps on the other side of your curtain bangs.

3. Curl Your Bangs (Optional)

Using a curling iron to curl your curtain bangs isn’t necessary. However, if you’re unhappy with how your hair turns out after trying the pinning approach, or if you decide that straightening your bangs gives you too much of an early 2000s look, this is a great choice.

To curl your curtain bangs with a curling iron, decide if you want a looser wavy vibe or bouncier, higher-volume curls. For the former, use your curling iron vertically. For the latter, use it horizontally.

In either case, take hair that’s no longer the width of your curling iron and wrap it around your curtain bangs

If you want to maximize the volume, hold your hair in front of your head; it should form a 90-degree angle with the ground. Then, work your curling iron through your bangs, starting at your scalp. Maintain tension as you move, as this will offer a smoother finish.

According to a study on hair product injuries over five years in the United States, 78% of emergency room visits in this category resulted from curling irons. Therefore, it’s crucial to take care when using a curling iron.

We recommend keeping your curling iron at 350-degree heat and holding it on for no longer than seven seconds at any given place of your hair. If you’re going to run to the store to buy a curling iron to style your curtain bangs, we recommend purchasing a 1.5-inch iron.  

4. Apply Hair Spray

You’ve worked hard to get your curtain bangs as good as they look right now. So, it would be a shame to mess them up from wind and activity. For this reason, applying hair spray to your finished style is an excellent choice.

To get the maximum benefit from your hair spray, check the nozzle to ensure there isn’t any dried spray impacting its release. Then, keep the nozzle at least 12 inches away from your curtain bangs. 

It’s important to spray in a continuous fashion for the most even look and not to overdo it to avoid your hair from becoming stiff or unnaturally glossy. 

Should you have thin hair and you’re worried about the volume you worked into your curtain bangs becoming undone, try lifting pieces of your bangs gently and applying a bit of hairspray underneath. 

That said, if you have sensitive skin, take care not to get hairspray on your scalp. Some people have hairspray allergies or sensitivities, which could cause your curtain bangs to turn heads in all the wrong ways if you develop a rash.

5. Touch Up As Needed

Depending on how closely you styled your curtain bangs to your face frame, they may get a little greasy as the day wears on. That’s most often the case in people who use flat irons to style their bangs.

The oil from your sebaceous glands can rub off onto your curtain bangs, given that there’s an exceptionally high concentration of these glands on the face and behind the ear.

Therefore, if you know that you suffer from oily skin and feel your curtain bangs get greasy throughout the day, carry a small bottle of dry shampoo with you. Then, spray a bit of the shampoo on a brush and run it through your hair.

There’s no need to go overboard—you don’t want to completely undo your styling work from earlier in the day. 

However, the confidence you’ll gain by putting a light application of dry shampoo onto greasy curtain bangs during the day will more than make up for the small effect it may have on how you style your hair.

Of course, when in doubt, you can always use a bit of hairspray after to get your curtain bangs looking back to how you had left them. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Woman with bangs for a piece on how to style curtain bangs

Axel Bueckert/Shutterstock

If you still have questions about how to style curtain bangs, we’ve got you covered.

How do I swoop my curtain bangs?

To swoop your curtain bangs, form a “C” shape with either a flat iron or by pinning your hair to the top of your head for a few minutes. Then, release the pins or remove the iron and use some hairspray to hold it all in place.

How do you style curtain bangs naturally?

To style curtain bangs naturally, use a towel to remove excess water after getting out of the shower. Then, gently work curl-defining cream through your bangs and let your hair air-dry.

Do you need a middle part for curtain bangs?

Traditionally, people wear curtain bangs with a middle part, as it offers a more balanced appearance. However, it’s possible to rock curtain bangs with an offset part.

How long should curtain bangs be?

The length that curtain bangs should be depends on the length of your hair. As a general rule, curtain bangs are shorter in the region between the middle and bottom of your eyebrow and layer out longer from there.

How do you blend curtain bangs?

To blend curtain bangs when styling your hair, you can use your fingers to intertwine different pieces of your bangs between one another. Then, use hair spray to hold this style in place.

So, How Do You Style Curtain Bangs?

Several choices exist for styling curtain bangs, and the option you pick depends greatly on your hair’s texture and whether you want a wavy or smooth curtain bang appearance. With the help of a hairdryer, straightener, or curling iron, you can achieve the curtain bangs of your dreams. 

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