BEFORE news of the royal baby broke in December, it was the Duchess of Cambridge's new hair making the headlines.
Kate Middleton's long sweeping fringe wasn't exactly a drastic change from her usual style but, as trends go, she was being a little more 'cutting-edge' with her flowing locks. Indeed, having a fringe cut can be a simple way to make a big style statement.
Such stars as Taylor Swift, Jessica Biel, Zooey Deschanel and even the USA's First Lady Michelle Obama have put their hair focus on fringes. Then there's Kim Kardashian who can't decide, and applies a temporary clip-in fringe to keep us all guessing.
"Fringes are a great way of updating a style without losing length and are a key fashion statement this season," says Andrew Barton, celebrity hairdresser.
What's more, the same cut can be worn swept to the side, centre-parted or bold and blunt – so that's three styles for the price of one.
So chop, chop – the new year is the perfect time to refresh your hair with a fringe.
Trim types: The fringe comes in many guises, from blunt-cut bold bangs to long sweeping peekaboo.
"The must-have cut of the season is a big, bold and beautiful fringe," says Guy Cammarano, creative director of Regis Salons. "But the beauty of the fringe is that it is completely versatile and can suit different hair lengths, hair colours and even thickness of hair."
If you're feeling adventurous, go all-out with a full and heavy statement fringe. Fuller fringes make foreheads look smaller and the bottom of your face appear narrower – ideal for round or heart-shaped faces.
"Perfect teamed with a strong colour, this style works best with straight tresses," Cammarano advises.
An eye-skimming fringe will instantly transform a long face, making it appear miraculously shorter.
"The peekaboo fringe is a super-sexy look as it covers or completely falls over one eye, ideally in a long voluptuous wave," suggests Cammarano.
"There's nothing sexier than an eye-tickling fringe with a beautiful pair of eyes peeping through the hair."
Flighty fringe: A fringe isn't for everyone and if it feels like a scissor snip too far, there are tentative short cuts.
Wear it long, like Kate Middleton, and switch between wearing it up or down. Enter the transitional fringe...
"If the thought of going all Jessie J leaves you quivering, the side-swept fringe is an ideal alternative," says Cammarano.
"It's especially ideal for those with round faces who want some coverage on their forehead but don't want to create a full, blunt line. It also gives the versatility of not having to be worn every day."
Cammarano recommends asking for a fringe cut with lots of layers to ensure movement and fluidity. This long and layered look works especially well on those with curly or wavy hair.
Cammarano's top tip: Before you take the plunge with a fringe, always talk it through with your hairdresser to ensure you get the style and shape best suited to you.