Iconic Movie Hairstyles Throughout Decades

Have you ever watched a movie and been mesmerized by a character’s hairstyle? From Audrey Hepburn’s chic updo in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” to Jennifer Aniston’s iconic layers in “Friends,” movie hairstyles have played a significant role in popular culture and fashion trends throughout the decades. Let’s take a trip down memory lane and explore some of the most iconic movie hairstyles that have captivated audiences and left a lasting impact on the world of beauty and style.

1920s-1930s: The Bob and Finger Waves Era

In the 1920s and 1930s, women started to embrace shorter haircuts, with the bob becoming a popular choice. This bold and flapper-style haircut was famously sported by actress Louise Brooks in the film “Pandora’s Box.” Another trend during this era was finger waves, a hairstyle technique that created beautiful waves close to the scalp. Actresses like Jean Harlow popularized this look in films such as “Dinner at Eight.”

Key Hairstyle: The Finger Wave

  • Popularized by: Jean Harlow
  • Signature Look: S-shaped waves close to the scalp
  • Impact: Defined 1920s-1930s hairstyle trends

1960s: The Bouffant and Beehive Era

The 1960s was a time of bold and dramatic hairstyles, with the bouffant and beehive taking center stage. Audrey Hepburn’s elegant updo in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” became synonymous with sophistication and glamour, while Brigitte Bardot’s tousled beehive in “And God Created Woman” exuded sex appeal and femininity.

Key Hairstyle: The Bouffant

  • Popularized by: Audrey Hepburn
  • Signature Look: Voluminous updo with height at the crown
  • Impact: Symbol of elegance and timeless style

1970s: The Shag and Afro Era

The 1970s marked a shift towards effortless and natural hairstyles, with the shag and afro gaining popularity. Jane Fonda’s tousled shag in “Klute” embodied youthful rebellion, while Pam Grier rocked a fierce afro in the cult classic “Foxy Brown.”

Key Hairstyle: The Afro

  • Popularized by: Pam Grier
  • Signature Look: Natural, voluminous, and rounded shape
  • Impact: Celebrated natural beauty and Black pride

1980s: The Perm and Power Hair Era

The 1980s was all about big hair and bold style statements. The perm became a staple hairstyle, with Meg Ryan’s curly perm in “When Harry Met Sally” setting trends for volume and texture. Meanwhile, Melanie Griffith’s power bob in “Working Girl” represented female empowerment in the corporate world.

Key Hairstyle: The Perm

  • Popularized by: Meg Ryan
  • Signature Look: Curly or wavy texture achieved through chemical treatment
  • Impact: Defined 1980s hair trends and permanently changed styling habits

1990s: The Rachel and Cornrows Era

The 1990s gave birth to two iconic hairstyles that defined the decade: The Rachel and cornrows. Jennifer Aniston’s layered cut in “Friends”, famously known as The Rachel, became a cultural phenomenon, inspiring countless imitations in salons across the globe. On the other hand, Bo Derek’s cornrows in “10” brought braided styles into the mainstream, celebrating African and African-American hair traditions.

Key Hairstyle: The Rachel

  • Popularized by: Jennifer Aniston
  • Signature Look: Layered and textured medium-length hairstyle
  • Impact: A defining hairstyle of the 1990s, setting trends worldwide

2000s-Present: The Pixie and Beach Waves Era

In the 2000s and beyond, celebrities continued to influence hair trends with the pixie cut and beach waves reigning supreme. Halle Berry’s short and sleek pixie in “Monster’s Ball” garnered acclaim and inspired many to embrace short hair, while Blake Lively’s effortless beach waves in “Gossip Girl” became a symbol of effortless beauty and youth.

Key Hairstyle: Beach Waves

  • Popularized by: Blake Lively
  • Signature Look: Loose, tousled waves reminiscent of a day at the beach
  • Impact: Defined modern casual glamour and natural beauty

From the roaring 1920s to the stylish 2020s, movie hairstyles have reflected the societal and cultural trends of their time, leaving a lasting imprint on fashion and beauty history. As films continue to inspire hairstyle choices around the world, it’s clear that the magic of cinema extends beyond the screen and into the salon chair.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

1. Which movie hairstyle started a major trend in the 1960s?

Audrey Hepburn’s updo in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” became a major trendsetter for the bouffant hairstyle in the 1960s, synonymous with sophistication and glamour.

2. Who popularized the afro hairstyle in the 1970s?

Pam Grier popularized the afro hairstyle in the 1970s with her iconic look in the film “Foxy Brown,” celebrating natural beauty and Black pride.

3. What was the defining hairstyle of the 1990s?

The Rachel, inspired by Jennifer Aniston’s layered haircut in “Friends,” became the defining hairstyle of the 1990s, sparking a global trend in salons worldwide.

4. How did Halle Berry influence hair trends in the 2000s?

Halle Berry’s short and sleek pixie cut in “Monster’s Ball” garnered acclaim and inspired many to embrace short hair as a symbol of bold and confident style in the 2000s.

5. Which modern actress is known for her signature beach waves?

Blake Lively is known for her signature beach waves, a look that exudes effortless beauty and casual glamour, as seen in her role in “Gossip Girl.”