70s Hairstyles Women, 70s Hairstyles Men
The 1970s has become known for a lot of outlandish trends, and the hairstyles of that era are no exception.
As those who lived through the decade thumb through pictures of the decade’s unique looks, they often snicker at the unusual hairstyles they sported, determined not to repeat the same mistake again!
But those unique hairdos were pretty cool in their day and those who wore them were quite proud of their look. And even though the young generation of today might find those styles unappealing, the looks of the 70s will remain some of the most memorable hairstyles in history.
70s Long and Natural Hairstyles
In the 1960s, hairstyles were very severe and often involved the use of lots of curlers and plenty of spray.
When the 70s came along, the free-thinking hippie generation opted instead for hair that demanded little care other than washing and brushing.
Thus, many girls wore their hair long and straight, usually parted down the middle with no bangs. Girls who didn’t have straight hair would straighten theirs….with the help of a friend!
In order to vary the look a little, headbands were used. Rather than wearing them as they are worn today (around the top of the head and under the hair by the neck), girls wore their headbands around their forehead.
Sometimes, scarves were worn instead of elastic bands and could be tied in the back or on the side with the ends hanging down. Often, the more colorful, the better!
Men also began wearing their hair long in the 1960s and the trend continued through the next decade.
70s Shag Hairstyle
While 60s hair was quite tailored and neat, in contrast, the unkempt look was quite popular in the 70s.
A good example of this was known as the “shag”, a hair style whose very name conjures up thoughts of a messy do.
Shags came in various lengths and have been duplicated in the past few years but with a pointier look. The Shag hairstyle of the 70s was a soft, layered cut with more layers at the crown of the head and thinner hair at the bottom.
Some Shag-wearers had bangs while others did not. Those who sported Shags often kept hair out of their face by use of colorful plastic barrettes that could be purchased at the local Five and Dime.
Indeed, the Shag didn’t require much care; it was literally a wash-and-wear haircut. Actress Jane Fonda was one of the most well-known wearers of The Shag as was Florence Henderson of Brady Bunch fame.
70s Feathered Hairstyles
The feathered hairstyle of the 70s was indeed one of the longest lasting haircuts of the decade. The style was immortalized best by actress Farrah Fawcett of Charile’s Angels and was probably the most emulated hairstyle of all times, becoming known simply as “The Farrah.”
In this hairstyle, there was a center part, hair was layered all around the head, and backward-facing curls framed the face and generally fell in layers to just below the shoulders.
It was a “large” look with lots of bounce and the style demanded that you already had lots of volume to your hair. (Those with thin, limp hair most likely could not pull off the Farrah look.) It is often imitated in the 21st century but today’s feathered hairstyle is generally not as “big” as the 70s version.
70s Wedge Hairstyle
Sort of similar to a bowl cut, the Wedge haircut of the 70s was popularized by ice skater Dorothy Hamill, who wore the easy, sassy cut when she won the Olympic gold medal in 1976 when she was just 19 years old.
After her appearance on international TV, everyone wanted to look like her, especially girls who admired her skills and spirit. However, the cut was enjoyed by women of all ages because it was easy to care for and could look both sporty and dressy.
The Wedge was also a very prolific haircut because it worked for most hair types except for really wavy or curly hair. Hammill’s initial wedge ended just below her ears and bangs were swept to the side.
As she got older, she added bangs to the look. But the key was the back of the 70s hairstyle, which tapered into a wedge shape at the back, giving the cut its iconic name.
70s Afro Hairstyle
For African-Americans, hair of the 70s no longer needed to be cropped close to the head. Instead, the Afro – sometimes called the “Fro” – was the style of the decade for Black Americans. Quite simply, those who wanted to wear an Afro allowed their hair to grow long and extend straight out from the head.
This style was most effective for African Americans who had extremely frizzy or curly hair that would stick straight up in the air. Often, however, hair was curled or braided before it was styled in order to make it as frizzy as possible.
Many black celebrities of the era wore an Afro, including many of the Motown recording artists like The Temptations, The Jackson Five, and Marvin Gaye, and television personalities like Richard Pryor and Demond Wilson.