100 Years Of Hairstyling: The Evolution Of Hair

100 Years Of Hairstyling: The Evolution Of Hair

Women have been experimenting with their hair as far back as the Roman Empire when they would arrange their hair in complicated styles. Even then, women would try to grow their hair as long as it would naturally go… it seems that hair extensions were destined to be a thing of the future!

Here is a quick rundown of how hairstyles have evolved over the past 100 years:




1920s: it was wartime, and women took charge at home while the men were away. To represent their independent, free-spirited image, and for reasons of practicality, they wore their hair in a bob, as epitomized by Clara Bow and Coco Chanel.

1930s: a move away from the boyish ‘flapper’ look, toward more feminine, softer waves: Mae West and Jean Harlow. Also, the introduction of the snood!

1940s: the decade of the victory roll, inspired by the vapour trails left in the sky in the wake of WWII jets. Plastic hair rollers and styling creams were needed for this look, although non-essential products were hard to come by due to the war. Veronica Lake was the emerging starlet of the 1940s.




1950s: The end of the war meant an end to rationing, and women started teasing, sculpting and spraying their hair into perfect helmets like the bouffant or the poodle. Marilyn Monroe, Lucille Ball, and Audrey Hepburn were women from this era that never had a hair out of place!

1960s: saw the introduction of the pixie cut, while the bouffant was taken up a notch to become the beehive aka Brigette Bardot. Long, flowing, hippie hair was in, and the Supremes modelled the afro.

1970s: feathered haircuts, and a move to a more natural looking hairstyle thanks to Farrah Fawcett’s choppy waves. Cher was a fashion icon of this decade with her long, centre-parted, dead straight hair.

Oh Hello 1980!



1980s: Cyndi Lauper and Madonna lead the way in the 80s. Big, oversized, permed, hair sprayed and teased hair was all the rage, and punk made its debut. Oh yeah, we can thank the 80s for the scrunchie!

1990s: The ‘Rachel’ haircut inspired all women in the ‘90s to get a shoulder length, layered, long, voluminous bob. Haircuts were a little tamer than the 80s but in retrospect it wasn’t a good decade (remember ponytails with two bits framing your face?)

2000s: past looks all made a comeback again. Lauren Conrad on The Hills inspired a generation of long, blonde, beachy, tousled waves.

2010s: anything goes as styles are constantly evolving in this digital age, with the focus on healthy, shiny hair above all else.