Hair in the 80's

What goes around comes around is an old saying that has a grain of truth, like many old sayings. It holds true whether you're talking about doing good deeds or watching the changing fashions. Most eras have particular and distinctive hairstyles and the 80s was no different. It was the decade of big, brash and beautiful and that attitude was reflected in the style of clothing and in the ways in which both men and women wore their hair.


The bigger the hairstyle, the more fashionable it was and for people with thin straight hair, the only way to get the look was to have it permed. Both men and women sported permed hairstyles in the 1980s, with women's perms going to extreme lengths to achieve ultimate height and width.

Copying styles from the 80s is popular amongst those going to fancy dress parties and if you have thick hair of a reasonable length, it's easy to recreate the 80s look. Hold up sections of hair in turn and backcomb from the top towards the root, using plenty of extra strength hairspray to hold the hair in place. Don't worry about the hair looking messy; 80s hairstyles nearly always looked messy. The look can also be recreated with the use of curling tongs for people who prefer a less permanent option to perming and you can click here for curling tongs to help you get the look.

By the mid-80s, more women were wearing their long hair crimped; a hippy style, with a parting down the middle and no fringe, was extremely popular. This style has had quite a few resurrections in the intervening years. Although time consuming, it is a relatively easy style to achieve at home with the help of hair crimpers from Argos. For those who have never seen hair crimpers, they are similar to hair straighteners, but rather than being flat, the plates are corrugated. The hair is held steady between the hot plates so that it sets in sharp little zigzags.


This is another 80s style, which is currently undergoing something of a revival. With asymmetrical hairstyles, one side of the hair is cut very much shorter than the other side, creating an unbalanced look. Typical effects include creating a sloping fringe, or cropping and shaving one entire side of the hair very much shorter, whilst leaving the other side long and flowing.

Popular with men was the hairstyle known as the mullet. This hairstyle gave totally different views and hints of personality when viewed from the front and back. From the front, the hairstyle looked perfectly respectable and rather conservative, cut quite short over the ears maybe, with a neat fringe or gentle waves across the top. Turn to the back, however and a different story is told. The back of the mullet hairstyle is long and flowing with either a full head of long hair or just a long ponytail left in the centre of the neck.

Ponytails were very popular with girls in the 80s and were worn mainly in one of two ways. The side ponytail was very quick and an easy way to look stylish if you had medium to long hair. With the basic side ponytail the hair was simply all swept to one side of the head and caught in a scrunchy or other hairband above the ear.

The second type of ponytail was sometimes called the 'fountain' ponytail. This was worn by tipping the head upside down and sweeping all the hair upwards and then gathering it in a ponytail on top of the head. Those with shorter hair would then fan the hair out to create a kind of spiky spray, something like a fountain. Longer hair was allowed to simply fall from the hair tie, again resembling a fountain.

Whatever people may say about hairstyles of the 80s, they were always fun and about having a good time, getting dressed up and showing a little personality.