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7 Styles That Make Hair Look Fuller from Every Angle

Create the illusion of thicker hair with these cuts.


If it seems like with each birthday, you’ve noticed more hair in your brush and in your shower drain and less on your head, you’re not alone. A large number of women deal with some degree of thinning. And while there are many factors linked to hair loss, including stress, hormonal fluctuations, and genetics, it’s easy to create the illusion of a lush and voluminous head of hair with a quick visit to the salon. Here, we share gorgeous haircuts and simple styling strategies guaranteed to help your tresses look thicker and healthier, and help you appear 10 years younger.

The Fringed Shag

Reba McEntire in 2018
Reba McEntireKathy Hutchins/Shutterstock

This cute cut conceals a widening part. The movement and “bulk” of a heavily layered, shoulder-sweeping cut tricks the eye into seeing a mane that’s much thicker. Plus, feathery fringe helps mask thinning along the part.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A shoulder-length shag with face-framing layers that taper from the temples down and full, wispy bangs that skim the eyebrows.

STYLING TIP: Apply a dollop of a volumizing mousse (we like Nexxus Mousse + Volumizing Foam, Buy from Amazon, $11.99) all over damp hair to give strands added grip. Next, blow-dry hair with a medium-size round brush until dry, then wrap various two-inch sections of hair around a one-inch curling iron and tousle with fingers. Set with hair spray.

The Sassy Slant

Angela Bassett in 2011
Angela BassettFrederick M. Brown/Getty Images

This haircut detracts from all-over thinning by bringing attention to the ends of your hair and away from thinner spots. And adding choppy texture to the ends of hair not only causes strands to appear more “solid” overall but also offers a touch of youthful edge to the style.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A midi cut that’s slightly shorter on one side with textured ends that are cut with a razor.

STYLING TIP: Wrap one-inch sections of hair around the barrel of a one-inch curling iron, leaving out ends (which is key for creating effortless beachy waves) and alternate the direction curls fall (one section toward the face and the other section away from the face). This “expands” strands while also making waves look more natural. Once all of the hair is curled, gently comb through with fingers. Set with hair spray.

The Cheeky Chop

Martha Stewart in 2006
Martha StewartGregg DeGuire/WireImage/Getty Images

A bob with “tiered” layers bulks up fine hair and provides added depth and dimension by ensuring hair doesn’t lay flat against the scalp. And an off-center part helps hair sweep over in a curtain-like way to conceal any sparseness along the hairline and at the temples. This haircut also distracts from signs of aging, like jowls and fine lines.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A below-the-chin bob with soft layers that graduate starting at the cheekbones and movement-creating point-cut ends.

STYLING TIP: Lightly mist a volumizing spray (we like Rahua Voluminous Spray, Buy from Amazon, $34) all over damp hair to help plump up finer tresses. Next, blow-dry while using a medium-size round brush on two-inch sections of hair, gently lifting strands up and out at the roots to prop them off of the scalp. When nearing the ends with the brush, pull hair slightly inward to create flippy, hair-thickening texture. Set with hair spray.

The Modern Taper

Tamron Hall in 2022
Tamron HallSonia Moskowitz/Getty Images

Not only does a pixie give facial features the spotlight, but one with a heavily layered, rounded silhouette provides all-over volume and conceals a receding hairline. And adding choppy, full fringe that brushes forward instantly covers up thinning temples. What’s more, a crop that’s longer up top and tighter along the sides helps hair appear more dense overall. Bonus? It also ensures the shorter style looks more modern than matronly.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A pixie cut that’s short and stacked on the sides and back with long, textured layers on top and full, piecey bangs.

STYLING TIP: Apply a dime-size amount of a smoothing cream (we like Stephen Knoll New York Smooth Finishing Treatment, Buy from, $24) all over damp hair to nix frizz. Next, blow-dry with a paddle brush, lifting slightly at the roots. Once dry, brush bangs into place, mist with hair spray, then tousle with fingers.

The Shoulder Sweep

Courtney Thorne Smith in 2019
Courtney Thorne-SmithPaul Archuleta/Getty Images

This haircut, with its movement at the shoulder and blended layers, makes your hair look thicker. And when accompanied by full bangs that blend seamlessly into layers, it provides added coverage near sparser areas at the temples. Even better? Fringe also instantly conceals deeper-set forehead furrows and makes beautiful, bright eyes a focal point.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A shoulder-length cut with wispy, eyebrow-skimming fringe that transitions into longer layers around the face.

STYLING TIP: Blow-dry damp hair with a large, round brush, pulling hair up at the roots and inward toward the ends to create voluminous movement. Once hair is dry, spritz strands and bangs with a light layer of dry shampoo (we like amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo, Buy from Amazon, $10). This will give locks some grip and texture while absorbing any oil or sweat that can weigh strands down.

The Lovely “Lob”

Laura Leighton in 2019
Laura LeightonRachel Luna/FilmMagic/Getty Images

The simple way to ensure a long bob (aka lob) looks beautifully buoyant rather than limp is with textured ends and lengthy layers. The layers release the weight of hair so it moves more freely and pushes hair up and out for even more volume. Bonus: The symmetry created by parting hair down the middle draws the eye vertically, which “stretches” the face and neck so both appear longer and leaner.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: A long bob that floats right above the shoulders with long, blended layers throughout and choppy, point-cut ends.

STYLING TIP: Part hair down the middle, then gently back-comb at the roots with a teasing brush (we like Cricket Amped Up Teasing Brush, Buy from Amazon, $5.25) to lift hair off of the scalp. Next, loosely wrap one-inch sections of hair around a one-and-a-half-inch curling iron. Once all of hair is curled and cooled, gently tousle and comb with fingers. Set with hair spray.

The Curly Crop

Glenn Close in 2022
Glenn CloseArturo Holmes/WireImage/Getty Images

A cropped haircut with tousled texture helps camouflage bald spots. Infusing the style with bouncy curls not only boosts the bald patch–masking benefits, but also gives hair mega movement for 360 degrees of volume.

WHAT TO ASK FOR: An ear-length cut that’s longer on top and shorter on the sides with stacked layers and side bangs.

STYLING TIP: Work a quarter-size amount of a curl-enhancing cream (we like Not Your Mother’s Curl Talk Defining Cream, Buy from Amazon, pack of two for $16.99) through damp hair from roots to ends. Next, using a diffuser attachment, blow-dry hair in two-inch sections, gently “scrunching” from ends up to roots with your free hand at the same time. Repeat until all of hair has been dried and curled.

A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.

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