LIFE

25 Popular Vintage Hairstyles You Won’t See Anyone Rocking In This Day And Age

by Kim Wong-Shing

A lot of hairstyles come back into fashion over and over. Decades might pass, but they never quite lose their allure. In fact, dipping into history is one of the best ways to come up with a fresh, unique look for the present day.

But some vintage hairstyles simply don’t translate into modern life. Sure, in the ’80s we thought big teased hair would always be cool, but today? Not so much. Likewise, huge beehives, pageboy cuts, and sausage curls have mostly been left to history.

And while we might not actually be keen to wear these exact hairstyles anymore, that doesn’t mean they’re not worth remembering. Once upon a time, these hairstyles were all the rage! Who really knows? Maybe one day we’ll look back at 2018 hairstyles with the same level of disbelief.

Here are 25 vintage hairstyles that you probably won’t spot on the streets today, from Marie Antoinette’s pouf to Michael Jackson’s Jheri curl.

1. Bouffant

1. Bouffant

Bouffants famously became popular in the 1960s, but they’ve actually been around since the 1700s. Jackie O is credited with bringing the hairstyle back.

2. Beehive

2. Beehive

This relative of the bouffant involves piling up your hair on top of your head into a conical shape, like a beehive. It was popular throughout the ’60s, but you won’t see it on many women today — unless they’re going for a dramatic vintage look, like Amy Winehouse did.

3. Shingle Bob

3. Shingle Bob

The shingle bob became popular in the 1920s. This ultrashort, sharp bob with bangs was just one of many short hairstyles that became popular for women at the time. And while bobs are in fashion again, this particular style is… not.

4. Victory Rolls

4. Victory Rolls

The aptly named “victory rolls” became popular in the 1940s during World War II. These voluminous curls frame the face on both sides. Nowadays, this look is usually associated with pinup girls.

5. Gibson Girl

5. Gibson Girl

In the late 1800s, the Gibson girl aesthetic popped up, based on the illustrations of Charles Dana Gibson. This hairstyle involved loosely piling the hair on top of the head with wispy curls hanging down.

While some women’s hair might end up like this after hanging out in PJs all day, it is no longer considered a fashionable look.

6. Sausage Curls

6. Sausage Curls

During the 1800s, so-called “sausage curls” were popular. Instead of loose, wavy curls, the hair was curled into long, tightly wound rolls. Mary Pickford brought the style back again in the early 1900s.

7. Short Waves

7. Short Waves

In the ’20s and ’30s, short finger waves were all the rage. They helped add texture and style to the short hairstyles that were popular at the time. Women often wore this hairstyle with headbands.

8. Mullet

8. Mullet

Mullets have been around since ancient times, but we mostly remember them as that cringeworthy hairstyle that people wore in the ’80s and ’90s.

9. Crimped Hair

9. Crimped Hair

Another cringeworthy hairstyle trend from the ’80s and ’90s, crimping is generally achieved by using a crimping iron, which forms the hair into a zig-zag-like pattern.

10. Pageboy

10. Pageboy

The pageboy hairstyle, despite its name, was popular for both men and women. It’s modeled after the haircut of a late medieval pageboy, and it became popular in the 1950s. Note that it is not the same as a bowl cut, though they definitely have similarities.

11. Titus Cut

11. Titus Cut

In the 1890s, the Titus cut made history as the first short haircut that became popular for women in the West. This hairstyle has a pretty dark origin, too — it came from the French Revolution practice of executioners cutting off the hair of those sentenced to death in preparation for the guillotine.

12. Marcel Wave

12. Marcel Wave

The Marcel wave became so popular that it’s now a word of its own — “marcelling.” Marcelling involves using hot curling tongs to curl the hair. Invented in 1872, the hairstyle really took off in the 1920s. Josephine Baker often wore her hair like this.

13. Pompadour

13. Pompadour

Pompadours have been around in many different forms over the years. The style has been popular for both men and women — just think of Elvis Presley’s signature pomp. The term was originally coined after Madame de Pompadour, an 18th century mistress of King Louis XV.

14. Ducktail

14. Ducktail

The ducktail is a variant of a male pompadour hairstyle that became synonymous with coolness in the 1950s. Men used a comb and hair grease to slick back their hair into a style that resembled a duck’s butt (yes, really).

15. Snoods

15. Snoods

Snoods are a type of head covering that women used to protect and contain their hair in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The covering is typically a loosely knitted net-like material.

16. Feathered Hair

16. Feathered Hair

In the ’70s and ’80s, men and women alike were feathering their hair all over the place. The hair was cut into layers and then brushed back in big loose waves to frame the face.

17. Jean Harlow Curls

17. Jean Harlow Curls

Jean Harlow was a world-famous movie star in the 1930s. Her hair was emblematic of a popular style at the time: neat, mid-length curls.

18. Curtained Hair

18. Curtained Hair

In the 1910s, curtained hair was trendy for both men and women. The hair was parted down the middle, allowing it to fall across the sides like a pair of curtains.

19. Pixie

19. Pixie

Audrey Hepburn popularized this variation of the short, cropped haircut in the 1950s. Twiggy was another famous wearer of the pixie cut. Pixies remain popular, but this particular vintage style has fallen out of favor.

20. Pouf

20. Pouf

Marie Antoinette popularized this high pouf in 18th-century France. She first wore the look to the coronation of her husband Louis XVI, and women all over soon followed suit, even adding false hair to make their hair as high as possible. They decorated with feathers and ribbons to help hold it all in place.

21. Jheri Curl

21. Jheri Curl

Michael Jackson will forever be the epitome of cool, but his Jheri curl? Not so much. Jheri curls were popular in the 1980s among African-American men. Michael even wore one on the cover of his legendary album Thriller.

22. Liberty Spikes

22. Liberty Spikes

In the 1980s, Mohawks and liberty spikes surged in popularity, particularly among punks. This hairstyle traces its origins back to the ancient Britons, who washed their hair in lime water. Liberty spikes were often colored in bright hues.

23. The Flip

23. The Flip

In the 1960s, it was fashionable to curl the ends of the hair outward in a flip shape. Most women now avoid curled ends at all costs.

24. Teased Hair

24. Teased Hair

In the 1980s, it was common for both women and men to backcomb and tease the heck out of their hair to make it as big and poofy as possible. Damage? What damage?

25. Short Bangs

25. Short Bangs

Extremely short bangs were popular in the 1950s. Mamie Eisenhower wore them, and so did the iconic pinup girl Bettie Page. Nowadays, bangs this short only happen by accident.

Would you ever try out one of these iconic vintage hairstyles yourself, or are you happy to just let them remain firmly in the past?