Behind the Hair

Iconic Hair Through the Decades

Fashion trends come and go, but one thing stays the same: What was old will, at some point, become new again. Just as fashion loves to turn back the clock, we took a look at some of the most iconic hair looks from decades past and asked Oribe educators for their perspective on how to update the looks for today. Read on for a hair history lesson and scroll through the slideshow above to get the updated how-tos for today.

The '20s and '30s
One of the most iconic symbols of the era is the flapper: a young woman sporting bobbed hair and short skirts that redefined society抯 ideas of womanhood. Finger waves and marcel waves were popularized to soften the hard appearance of the bob, and popularized by glamorous Hollywood starlets like Clara Bow, Jean Harlow and Marlene Dietrich. In 1929, the stock market crashed and a severe worldwide economic depression followed. As a result, hair became less polished and curls became softer and more voluminous梐n optimal style to wear with smaller hats since luxury fabrics were hard to get ahold of.

Today, these styles are still a favorite on the red carpet and perfect for black-tie events. Oribe educator Kien Hoang suggests sticking with the softer waves of the 30s to update the look. For a modern edge, slick back one side to give the illusion of an undercut, which is the perfect way to toughen up a predictably pretty look.

The '40s and '50s
World War II impacted daily life in a major way in the '40s. With men away at battle, women took over the remaining factory jobs, with Rosie the Riveter as the symbol of working woman. Since long hair was hazardous to operating assembly-line machinery, women were encouraged to cut their hair and wear it out of their face. In a morale-boosting effort, the U.S. government even approached Hollywood beauty Veronica Lake to cut her signature cascading peek-a-boo waves on camera, to which Ms. Lake obliged. As a result, victory rolls (so named because the pinned-back rolled hair resembled a 揤 shape) became a popular 40s style that women adorned with headscarves and ribbons. In the '50s, the trend shifted towards more 搉atural looking waves like those of Marilyn Monroe, even though the look was achieved by perming, setting, styling and spraying.

According to Oribe educator and Little Axe Salon owner Coby Alcantar, the key to modernizing an iconic '40s victory roll is incorporating lots of texture and leaving the look a little undone. 揑 love the texture you get from brushing out curls梬hich was a no-no for a long time, said Coby.

The '60s and '70s
Thanks to First Lady Jackie Kennedy, hair reached new heights in the '60s and '70s. The style icon抯 super-teased hair, whether styled into a flipped-up bob or brushed back into a shoulder-skimming 慸o, became one of the most highly requested looks at salons all across America. What抯 more, '60s and '70s actresses like Jane Fonda, Catherine Deneuve, Raquel Welch and Brigitte Bardot sported various versions of sexy, undone bouffants topped with flirty, feminine touches like ribbons and headbands.

For a more modern interpretation of the bouffant, Oribe suggests creating a softer, pretty version of the look. 揟he Bardot thing can be very overdone, says Oribe, who created a romantic, feminine version of the look on actress Jennifer Lawrence for the February 2013 cover of Vanity Fair.

The '80s and '90s
Fashion in the '80s was fun, playful, big, bold and wild卆nd the hair was no different. Hair in the '80s was crimped, curled and teased; bangs were bigger than ever; and scrunchies in every color under the rainbow topped off side ponytails. Since there were relatively few quality hair products on the market, people often resorted to using at-home concoctions like sugar and water sprays for hold. As a result, hair was often damaged in the process. 揃ig, sexy hair is always in style卋ut the difference between then and now is the quality of hair products available, says Oribe educator Ronnie Stam. 揟he secret to having big hair that抯 beautiful is to start with healthy hair, said Ronnie.

Cindy Crawford抯 sexy, voluminous hair on MTV抯 House of Style is the perfect balance between sexy '80s volume with a splash of '90s grunge texture that抯 still stylish and wearable today. We asked Ronnie, who styled Crawford on the show in that era, how to re-create the look while keeping hair healthy and happy.

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