Every other editor on the planet has rhapsodized about a love for French beauty and an admiration of the je ne sais quoi glam of French girls. The effortless chic of their style and their unyielding obsession with potent skincare, that iconic red lipstick, even a signature fragrance all come together and congeal into this highly seductive creature, but that sports an easy, low-key brand of confidence that somehow remains an alien concept to us this side of the Atlantic. And let’s not forget the hair, either: Topping off this esoterically gorgeous concept is almost always a recognizably French-girl cut of medium layered hairstyles with a fringe.
You know what it looks like, as it’s just as ubiquitous to painfully cool French girls as Dutch braids, top knots and almond-shaped nails are to today’s Insta-vloggers. These medium layered hairstyles with a fringe almost always come in a tasteful level of bedhead—a slightly evocative rumple (hinting at a late night out… or in?) that seems to come from not stressing out over the details. In fact, it’s this relaxed—and actually quite inclusive—approach to imperfection that makes up the foundation of French girl chic. You get a sense of a delicious story behind her beauty, and not just a bland façade. Read on as we try to deconstruct this super-versatile haircut:
French-Girl Hair: Medium Layered Hairstyles with a Fringe
1. It’s wash and wear—but haute.
Just like their prominent fashion houses, this signature hairstyle is about being understated yet high-quality. The layers are on the subtler side, and the fringe is sheared in a simple, nearly blunt line near the brows, save for a few longer pieces at the temples. The shape is a no-brainer to style, as it lies just past the shoulders, thus giving it more manageability. We like to kick-off the styling process by first cleansing with a texturizing duo, like Suave Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Body Shampoo and Suave Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Body Conditioner for a slightly bendy, bouncy base. Air-dry for some truly organic texture; otherwise, follow up with a salt spray, like Suave Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Texturizing Sea Salt Spray, then blow-dry for a lazy, beachy finish.
2. The cut works on nearly all textures.
Medium layered hairstyles with a fringe adapt rather well to a host of different hair types, including very curly (as above). Taking off a few more layers at the bottom gives the look more of a shag-like feel, a hairstyle that has its own brand of cult followers. Cute and trendy without looking like you tried too hard, fringed shags put the spotlight on the eye and cheekbone area, while still remaining light and swingy around your shoulders. Maintain the definition of those curls (and keep frizz at bay) with a lightweight curl shaper, such as Bed Head by TIGI Foxy Curls Contour Cream.
3. Those bangs are expressive AF.
Feeling a bit like a broody, French New Wave cinema heroine? Or in the mood to channel a ’60s blonde, bombshell? Parisians have fondly been referred to as being one of the moodiest and more emotional women out there, so it’s perhaps no wonder that they’ve taken to a look that allows them to switch up their looks just as easily. Let that fringe split in the middle for some retro-inspired charm, allow it to fall suggestively past your line of sight, or even blow it out full and straight—it’s like your bangs have a personality of their own, and you’re just there for the party. C’est la vie!
Looking for more medium layered haircuts with a fringe? Check out how to pull off long bangs in 5 ways.