Which one did you want?
We compile memorable hair looks throughout 10 decades for a chance to look back at the most outrageous and interesting hairstyles.
By Tiffany Olivia Lim
The Gibson Girl Updo
The Gibson Girl was created by illustrator Charles Dana Gibson to sketch a personification of the ideal of female physical beauty.
Many notable film stars and women of high society such as Evelyn Nesbit, Mary Pickford, Florence Lawrence, the Astors and Camille Clifford would stand in as a model and imitate The Gibson Girl, notably recreating her updo. This influenced the rest of Western culture.
The Flapper Bob
‘Flappers’ eventually cut their long locks off in favour of the bob. In the early 1920s, women were vying for the frizzy bohemian look. Bobbing was done simply at home because salons for women didn’t exist yet.
Barbers quickly took inspiration from Hollywood films and perfected the bob. Soon, the salon industry was booming and by the late ’20s, women embraced the Marcel wave, which gave the bob a more feminine touch.
Damsel in Distress hair
When Wall Street crashed, Australia’s unemployment rate rose. Women had to save money and regular trips to the salon were no longer a priority.
However, everyone still loved Hollywood and screen sirens, Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Fay Wray, Carole Lombard, Jean Harlow and Marlene Dietrich debuted slightly longer, less polished waves that looked chic, yet still perfect to wear under hats.
Film stars and World War II were the primary influence on hairstyles of this era. Legendary actresses such as Veronica Lake, Rita Hayworth and Lauren Bacall represented the glamour of the time with their thick glamorous waves.
However, as the war started, this look was no longer practical when women had to go to work. Women had the choice of pinning their hair up in place or cutting their locks short since long hair was considered hazardous for factory machinery.
The Italian ‘do
Enter Sophia Loren with her signature short and shaggy, sculptured hairstyle that included all-over waves and curls. Elizabeth Taylor soon adopted this cut, further popularising it in Hollywood. Perming, pin curls and rollers were the go-to hair tools to create this look.
Worn by the sultry Brigitte Bardot and Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast in Tiffany’s”, the beehive hairstyle became a huge hit. This polished updo was conveniently low maintenance and could last for days.
Big, big flicked hair
Television was now the central entertainment point at home and TV shows became a huge obsession in most western countries. Remember Farah Fawcett in the 1976 TV series “Charlie’s Angels”? Every girl wanted those thick, long feathered shaggy waves that she had!
All about that perm
Princess Diana, Molly Ringwald, Elle Macpherson, Olivia Newton-John… they made big permed hair the one hairstyle to go for.
Chemical hair treatments were then introduced to give soft, thick fluffy curls. And who can forget Olivia Newton-John’s madeover hair in her hugely popular performance as Sandy in “Grease”?
Supermodels such as Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Elle Macpherson, Christy Turlington, Kate Moss, Linda Evangelista and Claudia Schiffer made bedhead hair look sexy.
Their notorious big swoopy hair appeared on the cover of magazines and prestigious fashion campaigns. This look is timeless since it suits many different hair textures and lengths.
Effortless, Beachy look
Michelle Pfeiffer, Sharon Stone, Jennifer Grey, Barbara Streisand, Marcia Hines, Kelly Preston all look better with age! Influenced by the latest Hollywood hair trends, Victoria Secret runway looks and magazines, everyone is sporting effortless waves inspired by a day spent at the beach.
This hairstyle is very easy to recreate at home, especially with new inventive hair tools and products available on the market every year.