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What Is a Low Hairline?

Judith Smith Sullivan
Judith Smith Sullivan

A low hairline is closer to the eyebrows than average — about 2 to 2.4 inches (5 to 6 cm) for women and 2.4 to 3.2 inches (6 to 8 cm) for men. The opposite is often called the "Tudor hairline." It is very high, with measurements that exceed the average. It was given the nickname "Tudor" because of the hairstyles of the 16th century. Elizabeth I of England had such a hairline, and it was considered aristocratic. Women would even pluck the hair from their hairline and from their eyebrows to create a larger forehead area.

A low hairline, if it is troublesome to the individual, can be changed. Individuals sometime pluck hairs, but this is a laborious and painful procedure. The hair can be removed permanently with a laser, which typically requires several treatments. Medical spas, plastic surgery centers, and professional aestheticians often offer this service, and the cost varies from company to company.

A low hairline may be reduced or eliminated through a series of laser treatments.
A low hairline may be reduced or eliminated through a series of laser treatments.

For women, it is more common to disguise the hairline with bangs. If cut correctly, the bangs can give the illusion of a higher forehead. Thick bangs should be avoided, since these can accentuate the low forehead. Wearing hair up can also lengthen the face and make the forehead appear larger.

Usually, a low hairline is an easier problem to fix than a high hairline. To lower a hairline, donor follicles from another area of the head must be implanted on the forehead. Another option is surgery that stretches the scalp down. Both procedures are time consuming and costly, and like all surgeries, carry some risk. A low hairline isn't necessarily unattractive, so many individuals aren't bothered by it.

Although most low hairlines are simply cosmetic, there are certain medical disorders that result in a low hairline. Cornelia de Lange syndrome is one example. Its symptoms include thick brows which often meet above the nose, a low hairline, and physical and cognitive disabilities. It occurs in individuals of all races when three genes, NIPBL, SMC1A, and SMC3, are altered.

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Discussion Comments


@Mor - Trends come and go. I mean, you can tell from the paintings of Tudor nobles that they used to pluck or shave or something to get such strange looking hairlines.

I've got to say, I'm really glad this isn't a trend at the moment. It's difficult enough getting eyebrows even, let alone working on a whole hairline.


@croydon - I'm not sure why it would be associated with someone being "ethnic" looking though, because I'm pretty sure there aren't forehead shapes associated with particular ethnicities.

I guess it could be associated with people of lower intelligence, maybe? Just because I think people might see a really low hairline as being similar to the way that neanderthals are often depicted. But I don't really think people worry too much about it these days. With the different styles women in particular wear their hair, there are people whom I wouldn't even be able to guess what their hairline is like.


Apparently there was a famous actress in the early days of cinema who was told that she looked too "ethnic" and would never be able to find work.

In the end, she plucked her hair until she had a higher forehead and became famous for all the roles she played.

I was really shocked when I read about that because it had never occurred to me that the hairline would be something people would worry about (except perhaps, when it is receding on its own). But I guess it could make a big difference to the shape of the face.

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    • A low hairline may be reduced or eliminated through a series of laser treatments.
      By: spotmatikphoto
      A low hairline may be reduced or eliminated through a series of laser treatments.