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As time goes on and history progresses, it is only natural that culture and style progresses as well. Over the last 100 years, American hairstyles have changed radically, with each decade having its own signature look.

The 20s

The 1920s was a prosperous time for many people in America. As such, there was a new attitude toward parties, festivities, and alcohol. Extravagant women wanted to show off their appreciation for feminine freedom by sporting short bobs, sometimes slicked back with heavy hair lacquer.

During this time period women also took to wearing hair turbans as a way to add an extra feminine touch to their look.

The 30s

girl with a wavy bob

During the 1930s women in America had more examples of popular hairstyles via film. At this time it became commonplace for young girls to pin and roller curl their hair to get tight ringlets, a la Shirley Temple.

The bob continued to be a popular trend during this decade, although people steered away from the sleek lacquered look. Instead waves and curls became the more popular option.

The 40s

While short hair was still common during the 1940s, longer hairstyles started to become favored by women. Many working women opted to keep their hair short since it posed less of a safety issue in factories and warehouses where they were working.

For those who chose to have longer hairstyles, different types of curls and waves were on trend. Pin curls, victory curls, and glam curls were all popular and common among younger women.

The 50s

beautiful hair

The 1950s gave women varying celebrity hairstyles to model their own hair after. Grace Kelly introduced women to slicked back, loose curls. Jackie Kennedy brought in the bouffant for middle-aged women everywhere. And Audrey Hepburn brought the short bob back into style with her sexy gamine style.

The 60s

Amid the turmoil of the Vietnam War, Civil Rights Movements, and political chaos, the hairstyles of the 60s reflected the changes in social attitudes and norms. Unlike previous decades which could be defined by just a couple of hairstyles, the 60s had many different forms to represent itself.

Short hair continued to be popular, but in this decade it was in the form of crops and afros. Bouffants like Jackie Kennedy’s were also popular among housewives. During this decade the long, carefree “hippie hair” was desired. Hair icons included Julie Christie, Nancy Sinatra, Twiggy, and Elizabeth Montgomery.

The 70s

woman with beautiful hair

The 1970s acted as a transition period between the 60s and the 80s. The 70s proved to be a stylistic middle ground between the two other decades. Short crops grew out into a bowl-cut style called the purdy cut. For longer hair, big and soft curls were appreciated for a formal night out.

Farrah Fawcett set trends by debuting her long, feathered hair. The roughly layered hair also led to shaggy layers in both long and short hair for women.

The 80s

The 1980s took a radical change for hairstyles by making bigger, more voluminous hair the popular style. Perms, particularly permed bouffants, became a common style choice as well as long, curled bangs.

In addition, hair accessories, like Scrunchies, became sought after among the younger women and youth culture. Side ponytails also became a big, new hairdo to try out. The actress Meg Ryan had many hairstyles which embody the true fashion of this decade.

The 90s

90s voluminous hair

Hairstyles of the 1990s shared many of the same features of the 80s. Big, voluminous hair was still a popular trend during the first part of the decade, as was crimped hair and fair, side swept parts.

During the second half of the decade “The Rachel” became one of the most requested haircuts. Based off of Jennifer Anniston’s character on the TV show Friends, this medium length cut had short and choppy layers that curled in to frame the face.

The Early 2000s

Hairstyles from 2000-2010 took a milder turn, at least compared to the styles in the 80s and early 90s. Women began to focus on getting a natural for their hair through soft “beach curls.” Many younger women also opted for side-swept bangs.

At this time chunky highlights became popularized by the singer Kelly Clarkson. The actress Halle Berry also brought short hair into style with her iconic pixie cut.

Present Day

medium length hair

Present day popular hairstyles include ombre and baylage coloring where hair is lighter at the ends than at the roots. While this is sometimes achieved through dying hair, adding high quality hair extensions is an easy and temporary way to try out the popular look. Hair extensions are also a great way to experiment with bold colors and varied lengths. L’ange curling wand reviews can also help you to find the right products and tools to get the look you want.

Hairstyles and trends are constantly changing from one decade to the next. But one thing that has remained is that you should find a style that works for you personally and find a stylist who has been trained at the proper esthetics school. No matter your aesthetic preferences, there is always a style for everyone, regardless of what is on trend at the time.


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