Dressing the hair to suit the facial type
How the French, English and American woman makes the fashionable coiffure becoming
Coiffures, like costumes, follow the whims of fashion, and the fashion creator of coiffures evidently resides in Paris, for it is in that center of style that practically all the novel and wonderful hair arrangements are originated.
The French coiffure is designed to suit the head of those chic Parisiennes who follow the latest cry in everything pertaining to dress. Paris sets the fashion in hats and frocks. The rest of the feminine world copies these or creates others along similar lines and then adopts the coiffure which is designed to show these creations to the best advantage. Naturally, the Parisian coiffure is arranged to suit the Parisienne’s face, and as there are striking differences between, say, the French and the English face and the French and the American face, certain modifications of the fashionable Parisian coiffure have to be made in order to render it becoming to other nationalities.
The French woman’s features are rather small, she is animated and brilliant, so that no matter how imposing, her coiffure the mass of puffs and coils does not dim the light of her eyes, and the vivacity of her mouth and chin.
But the English woman’s head is of larger size, her features are almost massive when compared to the piquant French feminine head, while the American woman is different from either. She possesses more repose than her French sister, yet her features, while more English than French, are smaller and more mobile than those of Britain’s daughters.
Different faces, so different hairstyles
The natural conclusion is that if French, English and American women are to adopt the same style of wearing the hair certain definite and characteristic changes must be introduced in order to make it suit the different facial types. And this is exactly. what clever women do. They possess enough independence of mind to vary the prevailing fashion, and to believe that because one type of woman wears a coiffure that is charming and fashionable, it does not follow that the same one can be worn by them without careful study of its outlines, effect and necessary alteration.
One can not expect the modern woman to arrange her hair in classical knots and lines, but she should give due attention to her natural good points and make most of them, said an artist whose specialty is painting women’s heads and who disapproves cordially of the ultra fashionable coiffure.
The American women have, as a rule, beautifully-shaped necks and the back of their heads is excellent. They look infinitely more attractive with the hair dressed rather high and not puffed out in the back. A semi-high coiffure of moderate size is the one the American woman should choose, by all means, and I should recommend that she get away, from the squatty pompadour effect now in vogue. Artists always believe that each woman should wear her hair to suit her face and head, and pay no attention to the whims and vagaries of fashion. But we long ago ceased hoping for this state of affairs. Women will follow the lead of the fashionable and have themselves waved and puffed until their heads resemble anything except what they should.
For the American woman, I should suggest as a perfect coiffure one that is slightly waved and loose at the sides; in fact, all around the head, but not exaggerated in fullness, and a small, soft knot like a coronet crowning the head. This will be found becoming to, all — it would disclose the ears in a very attractive manner, not hide them as the French idea seems to be, yet the line at the back of the neck would be broken.
The America, woman’s head is perhaps neither full nor prominent in the back between the ears, and for that reason, a very low arrangement of the hair is not so well suited to her as it is to English women. The rather large English head requires little or no additional fullness just here, and, hence the popularity with them of the low coil wound loosely in the neck. No matter how often fashion in hair dressing changes, there are English women who cling to this coiffure because they realize how well it suits them.
The American woman’s temples are too pretty to hide under a mass of hair. One of the saving graces of the fashionable hairdressing is the way the hair outlines the delicate temples and gives a glimpse of the broad and well-shaped forehead. Intricate coils and twists, huge circles of hair surmounting a French face, do not seem so incongruous as they might. French women have a way of wearing these adornments that is distracting, while on the average woman, they would seem almost ludicrous.
The problem is therefore, how to be French as to coiffure, or whatever the coiffure mode happens to be, without using the characteristics of the type.