7 Most Iconic Hairstyles from the '80s

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Stiff Stuff. Aquanet. Prell. Banana clips and Goody hair combs. Perms. Crimping irons. These were a few of our favorite things in the ’80s. It took A LOT of time and energy to get good hair in that decade. Looking back at photos of the era, it kind of just looks like we might have rolled out of bed and left the house without looking in the mirror. But you know you were waking up two hours before school to wash your hair with Rave or Finesse, only to fry the ever-living-hell out of it with the blow dryer and crimping iron. And then came half a can of level 5 hair spray to ensure it didn’t move. I kept a travel-size bottle of Rave in my fanny pack (!!) at school in the event that my bangs lost their shape. Don’t lie—you know you did too.


Shoulder pads aren’t the only things that we regret from the ’80s. (Hammer pants, anyone?) And while these hairstyles might have been a terrible idea in retrospect, they certainly are iconic.

1. High side ponytail

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It took a high level of skill to get the sides of your head super smooth in the ponytail, only to poof out the tail end to the highest degree. Scrunchies and bows were imperative for this look, as were epic bangs.

2. Whale spout (hello scrunchy!)

Image result for 80s goody comb

With this ‘do you had quite a few options: you could spout just half of your head and leave the bottom to do its thang, or you could put all your hair into this pony and let it just rain down all around your head. Bonus if you had some spectacular bangs to finish off the look.

3. Crimped hair

Image result for 80s crimped hair

When crimping became popular, it was pretty much all I could think about. It was so fresh and it didn’t matter that it took forever to do your entire head every morning. Remember the crimping irons that had removable plates so you could do a flat iron look if you wanted? But no one ever used that attachment. Crimping was where it was at. I mean, even Barbie had crimped hair! (And don’t overlook those epic bangs of hers…)


Image result for 80s crimped hair barbie

4. Wave bangs

Image result for 80s high bangs

I was never able to fully achieve this look, but I had a cousin who had it down to a science. It took her a good half hour just to blow dry her bangs (with her head upside down, of course), and then spray them until their edges were like razors. She was the coolest person I knew, simply because of that hair.

5. Farrah Fawcett hair

Image result for 80s farrah fawcett hair three's company cindy

If you wanted fabulous hair, then you had to look no further than Farrah Fawcett for inspiration. Not everyone could pull off this look. It definitely required relatively straight hair with little frizz. But if you were blessed with beautiful locks, this was a cinch.

6. Perms

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This was so unbelievably unhealthy for our hair, but we did it anyway. The chemicals that it took to make this hairstyle a reality could kill a herd of horses, but it was worth it. The outrageous locks that resulted from a perm were not only big (big hair is always a good thing), but they required not much more than a half can of hairspray every morning.

Nostalgic hair trend making a modern comeback

Believe it or not — the perm is making a comeback!

Posted by In The Know Reports on Friday, April 13, 2018


7. Mullets – in so many shapes and sizes

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The beauty of the mullet is that it was just so versatile. Men could wear it, women could wear it. You could have a long “party in the back” or one that was just shoulder length. You could do a permed mullet or a super sprayed and styled mullet. Your mullet could have poofy bands, or something a little more low key.


Image result for 80s mullet

Image result for 80s mullet

Amazingly, the mullet has made a comeback. Zendaya sported one at the Grammys this year, and we kind of love it.

Image result for mullet red carpet 2018




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