Hair- some infinite, unorganized threads with which we are all dealing with ever since they occupied the top most position in our body. These flowing, growing, stretching locks also need attention and care as the other parts of our body do.
We not only just wash them with the most promising brands of shampoo but cut and crop as per the prevailing trend. Who sets this trend? How should we decide which particular cutting will suit our personality or do we need such a style that will re-define us?
From the very existence of the civilization the concept of hairstyles has existed in history but we’d dwell in the changing trends from the last century and see how a shift has taken place with each passing decade. We all want to stay upgraded but each change brings with it a long sequential history.
Who are these trend setters? They can be anyone but prominently it’s seen these are the people that we look up to – celebrities, politicians or people who might have attained a representative position. Within last 100 years there has been amalgamation of creativity and the time setting and human hairs have been cleverly played with.
The 1920’s gave a ‘Finger Wave’ style which came into prominence because of celebrities like Zelda Fitzgerald and Colleen Moore and became popular with ladies. The hair were cropped to the ear level and were given uniform turns. The trend following for about three decades took a tremendous shift in the 1950’s with the emergence of styles like ‘Pompadour’, ‘The Pixie’ and ‘Ducktail’.
‘Pompadour’ was the more gentlemanly hairdo which was adopted by men of repute. They combed their hair against the sides and then pulled the hair up and over on itself on the top. ‘The Pixie’ as a hairdo was brought into light by the actress Audrey Hepburn which was for short hair giving it shot fringes. ‘Ducktail’ as a concept was followed by both the sexes. This symbolized the ‘greasers’ role in the society and it left the hair piled up on the top like a ducktail.
Within 60’s and 70’s contrasting shades of styles were noticed. ‘Beehive’, ‘The Shag’, ‘Bouffant’, ‘Afro’, ‘Corn Rows’, ‘Dreadlocks’ and ‘Feathered Flip’. ‘Beehive’ known in the Southern United states as “the B-52” is a dome shaped hairdo created by lifting hair high up with plenty of spray that it acquires a shape of the beehive. ‘Bouffant’ is an extension of the ‘Beehive’ hairstyle where any haircut is piled high on the top of the head. ‘The Shag’ was the ideal hairstyle for any pop idol in the 60’s. It was made famous by the Beatles and women loved whatever the pop singers did to their hair.
In the 70’s prevailed the ‘Black is Beautiful’ movement. ‘Afro’ as the name suggests was for the ones with curly hair largely supported by African-Americans who brushed out their hair to create a perfect halo of hair surrounding the head. ‘Corn Rows’ came as an alternative to the ‘Afro’ where hair were braided tightly to the scalp in rows and secured with elastic bands.
‘Dreadlock’ hairstyle attained its stature with its adoption by Bob Marley. The style involves sectioning the hair into locks and growing it as long as it can. It popularized with the popularity of reggae music. The soft flowing locks were parted and teased back to give a style called ‘Feathered Flip’ which thousands of women have copied after the actress Farah Fawcett sported it.
The 1980’s sported the PUNK style in hair in huge numbers. From the ‘Mullet’, ‘Liberty Spikes’, ‘Mohawk’, ‘Rat-Tail’ to the ‘High Top Fade’ all supported the genre of the punk. ‘Mullet’ is a simple long in the back and short in the front hairdo which is popular all over the world with the lower classes.
‘Liberty Spikes’ are more Gothic and horrific in its caricature and is a challenge both to wear and for the society. A few long inches of hair and some glue is all that one requires to hold the locks straight high. But the only question which comes to mind is that how long will someone hold such a hairdo?
‘Mohawk’ defines Punk as a movement. This is also considered as a brother of ‘Liberty Spikes’. Here the hair are shaved in the middle and are raised high with the help of eggs or glue and are multi-colored in streaks. ‘Rat-Tail’ associated with the lower class involves long hair where they can be left alone, braided, permed or dread locked. ‘High Top Fade’ which looks like a pencil eraser was popular among American-African youth.
The 1990’s was a hit with the women with coming of F.R.I.E.N.D.S who were sported with the ‘The Rachel’s cut’ named after the character Rachel Green. It is layered and bouncy with low and high lights.
The coming millennium i.e. 2000’s carried within it a taste of the past and tinges of present. ‘Fauxhawk’, ‘Emo’, ‘Buzz Cut’ and ‘Comb over’ were some brilliant hair styles which were broadly carried. Those who still wanted to add pinch of Punk in their lives but didn’t want to shave their heads adopted the style ‘Fauxhawk’ where shorter haircut was styled with gel to create a ridge of hair in the middle.
Under the ‘Emo’ hairstyle the wearer dyed his hair black, part his hair to extreme on one side and razor cut the fringes. It symbolized their half-view on the society. The ‘Buzz Cut’ is associated with the military recruits and it shaves off the hair to the minimal degree possible. ‘Comb over’ is for the men who are balding but still believe that they have good volume of hair on their head. This is simple and one just combs over their hair in such manner that they tend to cover the entire surface area of the bald head.
The last century has seen tremendous shifts in hairstyles. But people follow what the celebrities and ideals chose to. The trend will keep on changing with the changing times. It doesn’t matter what sort, amount or quality of hair one has, each of these variety will be catered to with the hairstyles available in abundance to suit every personality.