Yes I relate to your question. My hair is longer than yours but also straight.
I think that it depends on whether you prefer volume or a simpler look.
I think that some haircuts get a lot of split ends because they do the layer (or finish the hair ends) with a knife/blade (sorry, don't know the right term in English) instead of scissors. Of course you get a lot of texture but this is the worst you can do and your hair will get split ends very soon. Scissors should be very sharp also for a clean cut.
If you are doing layers (or any kind of haircut for that matter) always demand the stylist to use only scissors. I have noticed this helps a lot.
There is also something else. With hair like yours and mine: if you have layers then you MUST style your hair if you're wearing it loose. At least blow dry it a bit with a round brush. It is very hard for a layered haircut on straight hair to air dry to perfection (I've had it sometimes, but it lasts only for a couple weeks before it starts growing and getting out of control). So if you have time limitations in your routine then consider it before getting any haircut.
Now is there a compromise? Well, I have also discovered that a completely flat haircut is not what I want. I look like I go to elementary school. So I go for long layers. This is: layers separated only a bit from one another, which allow me to pull up comfortably a pony tail (without looking like I have three super long hairs and a lot of shorter ones). I go with two but you can have three and still will have good volume.
In addition to long layers, I also have (like you) these soft ones around my face (my face is very round so this contours it very well, it's more flattering than not having them).
And finally, fringe helps immensely. It gives the illusion of volume around your face (blow drier + round brush and NOT flat ironed) and if you make it side part it's universally flattering. If you ask for fringe it should be not too thick.
That's my experience, hope it helps.
Last edited by omixochitl (2012-08-14 12:27:54)