The Best Haircuts You Don't Need to Straighten

Plus how to control your curls.
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Plus how to control your curls.
The best cuts you don't need to straighten

Welcome to our Ask Beautyeditor column, where our experts answer your hair, skin and makeup questions. To request an online hair consultation from celebrity hairstylist Bill Angst:

  • Email with “Bill Angst Hair Consultation” in the subject line.
  • Include at least TWO well-lit, hi-res photos of you (one close-up, one full-body).
  • Briefly describe your hair texture, colour and main hair challenges.

Please note: All photos will be published.

Q: Hello from California! I am in need of some advice for my dark, thick, frizzy, wavy hair. For the longest time, I have thermally and/or chemically straightened it into submission. But lately, I am wanting to see if I can find a style in its more natural state. 

Hair consultation - Kimberley

Kimberley wants to stop straightening her hair into submission.

These pictures reflect my hair after combing it out in the morning, and then applying a liberal amount of styling cream to tame it. As you can see, even after the cream, my hair is very "big" compared to my head, and is badly in need of some shape.

Hair consultation - Kimberley

Kimberley is worried that her thick, frizzy, wavy hair is too "big."

I am thinking longer would be better to weigh it down, but I really don't want to have a huge lion's mane! I would very much appreciate any input you have. Thanks! — Kimberley

A: Kimberley, thank you for your request for a consult.

I think you are barking up the wrong tree… don't grow it long! Your hair long would take over your whole body.

Here are a few short shapes that should work nicely with your hair:

Audrey Tautou, Cannes 2013

Audrey Tautou at Cannes in 2013.

Sofia Black-D'Elia wavy long bob

Sofia Black-D'Elia's wavy bob.

Curly bob with deep side part

A curly bob with a deep side part.

Bob for thick, wavy hair

A wavy bob for thick hair.

With these cuts, I would avoid combing at all costs. It will only expand your hair.

Instead, I would rinse and condition your hair well every day—no shampoo—and only then comb it. Add your generous amount of styling cream, place your hair into style with your fingers, and let it dry. No blowdryer for you...

When it has dried, only use your fingers to lift and separate the shape. I find that putting your fingers at the scalp and ruffling the roots of the hair is the best way to do this. Do not run your fingers all the way through, as this will upset any waves or curls that you will acquire.

Make your hair larger than life when it is shorter, and you can still see your face and neck. The long hair hides these lovely attributes.

Curly bob with volume

A curly bob with volume.

Try doing some work with a curling iron on these shapes for fun.


Bill Angst is one of Canada’s top celebrity hairstylists and the owner of Angst Salon at 240 Queen Street East in Toronto. Call 416-360-5942 to book an appointment.