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Women and Their Hairstyles

Hair has been called a woman's "crowning glory" - it's certainly been a mode of expression over the centuries. Read more >>

In the 1800's, brushing your hair 100 times a day was a popular way to beautify it - but hair was usually washed only once a month. And shampoo wasn't invented until the end of the 1800's. For women, hair was usually long but often worn up - with wigs or small hairpieces added. Perhaps hairstyles could be more intricate because unwashed hair could hold a style easier? Buns, chignons, and drop curls were common and combs, ribbons, head bands, and diadems - as well as flowers - often adorned these hairstyles. Perhaps there wasn't a lot of effort in maintaining your hair but the hairstyles themselves demanded both time and attention.

By the beginning of the 20th century, hair was changing - almost decade by decade. At the turn of the century, both long and short hair became popular, with part of the hair pinned up and the rest flowing down with curls. In the 1910s, curls, big bows, pins, headbands, and hats were especially popular. In the 1920's, short bobbed hair became the fashion - spit curls, finger waving and marcelling were all the rage. In the 1930's, wavy shoulder length hair was considered sexy - and platinum hair became the color of the day. In the 1940's, "victory rolls" (think World War II for the terminology) and barrel curls in longer hair were popularized by movie stars. And in the 1950's, very short hair became popular - as shown by the petal coif and the pixie hairstyle (think Audrey Hepburn).

By the 1960s, hair fashion was all over the map. Bouffants, beehives and teased hair were extreme but were also "street" fashion. At the other end of the spectrum, the model Twiggy wore very short, almost boyish hair - as did actress Mia Farrow. In the 1970s, it was if women were tired of fussing with their hair and the "natural look" became the norm. Long, stick straight hair (sometimes ironed) or long, messy waves were all the rage and headbands were the most popular hair accessory. Then came the 1980s - big, often frizzy, usually curly . . . lots of hairspray and some teasing. What a look.

By the 1990's, it was less about style or accessories and more about "natural". Curly, straight, long, shoulder-length, short - whatever the style, it was based on what your hair did naturally and what you personally felt was a "good" look.

These pictures are of women being stylish while trying to do what they could with their natural (or enhanced) hair. Some styles may inspire you - and some may make you happy that you don't have to follow a fashion trend today. << Read less
A photo of Margaret Augusta "Gussie" (Sowle) Groesbeck
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A photo of Mary Brian, actress. From Wikipedia: Mary Brian (February 17, 1906 – December 30, 2002) was an American actress and movie star who made the transition from silent films to sound films. She was born Louise Byrdie Dantzler in Corsicana, Texas, the daughter of Taurrence J. Dantzler (December 1869 – March 18, 1906) and Louise B. (August 12, 1876 – April 3, 1973). Her brother was Taurrence J. Dantzler, Jr. (August 9, 1903 – April 6, 1973). Her father died when she was one month old and the family later moved to Dallas. In the early 1920s, they moved to Long Beach, California. She had intended becoming an illustrator but that was laid aside when at age 16 she was discovered in a local bathing beauty contest. One of the judges was famous motion picture star Esther Ralston (who was to play her mother in the upcoming Peter Pan and who became a lifelong friend). She didn't win the $25 prize in the contest but Ralston said, "you've got to give the little girl something." So, her prize was to be interviewed by director Herbert Brenon for a role in Peter Pan. Brenon was recovering from eye surgery, and she spoke with him in a dimly lit room. "He asked me a few questions, Is that your hair? Out of the blue, he said, I would like to make a test. Even to this day, I will never know why I was that lucky. They had made tests of every ingénue in the business for Wendy. He had decided he would go with an unknown. It would seem more like a fairy tale. It wouldn't seem right if the roles were to be taken by someone they (the audience) knew or was divorced. I got the part. They put me under contract." The studio renamed her Mary Brian. After her showing in the beauty contest, she was given an audition by Paramount Pictures and cast by director Herbert Brenon as Wendy Darling in his silent movie version of J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan (1924). There she starred with Betty Bronson and Esther Ralston, and the three of them stayed close for the rest of their lives. Ralston described both Bronson and Brian as 'very charming people'. The studio, who created her stage name for the movie and said she was age 16 instead of 18, because the latter sounded too old for the role, then signed her to a long-term motion picture contract. Brian played Fancy Vanhern, daughter of Percy Marmont, in Brenon's The Street of Forgotten Men (1925), which had newcomer Louise Brooks in an uncredited debut role as a moll. Career rise Brian was dubbed "The Sweetest Girl in Pictures." On loan-out to MGM, she played a college belle, Mary Abbott, opposite William Haines and Jack Pickford in Brown of Harvard (1926). She was named one of the WAMPAS Baby Stars in 1926, along with Mary Astor, Dolores Costello, Joan Crawford, Dolores del Río, Janet Gaynor, and Fay Wray. During her years at Paramount, Brian appeared in more than 40 movies as the juvenile lead, the ingenue or co-star. She worked with Brenon again in 1926 when she played Isabel in P. C. Wren's Beau Geste starring Ronald Colman. That same year she made Behind the Front and Harold Teen. In 1928, she played ingenue Alice Deane in Forgotten Faces opposite Clive Brook, her sacrificing father, with Olga Baclanova as her vixen mother and William Powell as Froggy. Like many of Brian's Paramount movies, Forgotten Faces, which was a big box-office hit, is presumed lost. Successful transition to 'Talkies' Mary Brian with Gary Cooper in The Virginian (1929) Mary Brian with James Hall in Manhattan Tower (1932) Her first talkie was Varsity (1928), which was filmed with part-sound and talking sequences, opposite Buddy Rogers. After successfully making the transition to sound, she co-starred with Gary Cooper, Walter Huston and Richard Arlen in one of the earliest Western talkies, The Virginian (1929), her first all-talkie feature. In it, she played a spirited frontier heroine, schoolmarm Molly Stark Wood, who was the love interest of the Virginian (Cooper). Brian co-starred in several hits during the 1930s, including her role as Gwen Cavendish in George Cukor’s comedy The Royal Family of Broadway (1930) with Ina Claire and Fredric March, as herself in Paramount's all-star revue Paramount on Parade (1930), as Peggy Grant in Lewis Milestone’s comedy The Front Page (1931) with Adolphe Menjou and Pat O'Brien. After her contract with Paramount ended in 1932, Brian freelanced. That same year, she appeared on the vaudeville stage at New York's Palace Theatre. Also in the same year,she starred in Manhattan Tower. Other movie roles include Murial Ross, aka Murial Rossi, in Shadows of Sing Sing (1933), in which she received top billing, Gloria Van Dayham in College Rhythm (1934), Yvette Lamartine in Charlie Chan in Paris (1935), Hope Wolfinger, W. C. Fields’s daughter, in Man on the Flying Trapeze (1935), Sally Barnaby in Spendthrift (1936) opposite Henry Fonda, and Doris in Navy Blues (1937), in which she received top billing. In 1936, she went to England and made three movies, including The Amazing Quest of Ernest Bliss in which she starred opposite Cary Grant, to whom she became engaged at one stage. Her final film of the 1930s was Affairs of Cappy Ricks although she auditioned unsuccessfully for the part that would go to Janet Gaynor in A Star is Born.[2] Later career Mary Brian with Ann Baker in Meet Corliss Archer Brian was absent from the screen from 1937 to 1943, and appeared in only a handful of films thereafter. Her last performance on the silver screen was in Dragnet (1947), a B-movie in which she played Anne Hogan opposite Henry Wilcoxon. Over the course of 22 years, Brian had appeared in more than 79 movies. She played in the stage comedy Mary Had a Little... in the 1951 in Melbourne, Australia, co-starring with John Hubbard. During World War II, she entertained servicemen in the South Pacific and in Europe. She spent Christmas of 1944 with the soldiers fighting the Battle of the Bulge. During the 1950s, Brian had something of a career in television, most notably playing the title character's mother in Meet Corliss Archer (1954). She also dedicated a lot of time to portrait painting in her retirement years. Though she was engaged numerous times and was linked romantically to numerous Hollywood men, including Cary Grant and notorious womaniser Jack Pickford, Brian had only two husbands: magazine illustrator Jon Whitcomb (for six weeks, beginning May 4, 1941) and film editor George Tomasini (from 1947 until his death in 1964). After retiring from the screen for good, she devoted herself to her husband's career; Tomasini worked as film editor for Hitchcock on the classics Rear Window (1954) and Psycho (1960).[3] She died of heart failure at age 96 in Del Mar, California. She is interred in the Eternal Love Section, Lot 4134, Space 2, Forest Lawn – Hollywood Hills Cemetery, Los Angeles, overlooking Burbank. Mary Brian has a star for her contribution to motion pictures on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1559 Vine Street in Hollywood.
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Louise Byrdie Dantzler
Feb 17, 1906 - Dec 30, 2002
A photo of Freeland Wurtz's wife Marion (Born) Wurtz
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Marion (Born) Wurtz
1912 - 1981
fond du lac, wi, us
A photo of Roxie Faye (Smith) Miler taken around 1910 - 1911
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A photo of Edith Linda Grizzle, High School graduation photo in 1944.
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This is Mary Elinor Lucas (1912-2004) at Boise High. Her Father was Parker Vincent Lucas and her sister Elizabeth Harriett Lucas. This is Elinor (she went by 'Elinor') at Boise High 1928.
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Mary Elinor Lucas
1912 - 2004
A photo of Mary Ann (Maime) Mellinger, born 1863
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A photo of Ibbie Batson, a member of the Miller / Bramlett family
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Shared on Dec 16, 2013 by:
Marjorie Bland, Abilene High School, Abilene, Taylor, Texas, USA. 1928
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Arlene Wagstaff, Athens Ohio, USA. 1946
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Shared on Jan 10, 2013 by:
Maybird Heeth, Lakeland Florida, USA. 1944
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Unidentified photo found in an antique store. Their faces look similar. I wonder if they were sisters.
Found in an antique store. There is no information about the woman.
Found in an antique store. Unfortunately, this lady is unidentified.
A photo of Al Heinz
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Al Heinz
Mar 10, 1890 - 1953
A photo of Joan (Wittman) Michniewicz
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A photo of Joan (Wittman) Michniewicz
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Found in a central Texas antique store with several photos from Finland. I don't know what country this picture is from. The photographer's name appears to be G. Broman of St. Michel or St. Mickel.
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This photo was found in an antique store in Texas. In pencil on the back: "born 1892, Edith Glenn Crain, age 6"
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Edith Glenn (Crain) Hanover
Sep 11, 1892 - Oct 3, 1973
I found this cabinet card in an antique store in Georgetown, Texas. I thought her expression was priceless. She seems to be watching her fancy curls intently as though she is worried about whether they will stay in place for the photo. From her clothing, I'm guessing this was taken in the late 19th century. The photographer is listed as Geo. A. Harris of 150 State Street, Chicago, Illinois. I'll upload the fancy ad on the back separately.
A photo of Florence Estelle Vandagriff
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A photo of Thelma Andrews Condon, around 1920
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Thelma Faye (Andrews) Condon
Aug 11, 1907 - May 27, 2004
Fort Worth, TX
A photo of Mariah Louisa (Messinger) LeBaron
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Mariah Louisa (Messinger) LeBaron
Mar 24, 1867 - Jan 11, 1903
A photo of Ella Wheeler Wilcox. Taken in Madison, Wisconsin. Found in Byron Doolittle (1844-1912) scrapbook labeled as friend. Byron Doolittle lived in St. Ansgar ,Iowa.
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Wedding photo of Jewel Catherine (Underwood) Fambrough, 1921
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Jewel Catherine (Underwood) Fambrough
Sep 18, 1898 - Nov 7, 1988
Gadsden, Al, USA
A photo of Margaret N. (Merriman) Wheeler
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We had an antique store close recently and I "rescued" it, trying to find where it belongs. If anyone should recognize this lady, please let me know. Thank you.
A photo of Edith Aldrich - my great aunt, sister to my grandfather, William P Aldrich, Jr.
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A photo of Thelma (Winters) Updegrove
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Thelma (Winters) Updegrove
Jun 25, 1920 - Sep 7, 2007
I’ve “rescued” two old photographs belonging to the BUCKLEY Family of Pennsylvania. The first is one of John BUCKLEY which was taken at the Gilbert & Bacon Studio in Philadelphia, PA. The photograph appears to have been taken in the 1890’s with John likely in his 30’s or 40’s at the time it was taken. The second photograph is one of Eliza BUCKLEY and includes the title of “Aunt” on the back of the photograph along with Eliza’s name. This second photograph was taken at the Entrekin & Kuebler Studio in Philadelphia, PA in the 1890’s as well. Eliza looks to be in her 40’s at the time the photograph was taken. I am hoping to locate someone from this BUCKLEY Family so that I can see the photographs returned to the care of family. If you are a member of this family, or you know someone who might be, please contact me. Thanks, Shelley
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A photo of Christine LaVaughn Varvell
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Christine La Vaughn Varvell
Jun 15, 1931 - Nov 23, 2001
Saint Ann, MO, United States
A photo of Jane (Robson) Evans
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Toby Wing (1915-2001) - American Actress was born as "Martha Virginia Wing" on 14 July 1915 in Amelia Courthouse, Virginia. Her parents were photographer, Paul Reuben Wing (1892-1957) and equestrian, Martha Gillis Thraves (1893-1981). Toby's film career began aged nine, when her father was working as an assistant director for Paramount Pictures and her mother was employed as a Hollywood stunt rider. After about ten uncredited juvenile roles Toby became one of the first "Goldwyn Girls" in "Palmy Days" 1931. Toby Wing appeared in more than forty feature films and fourteen short subjects from 1924 to 1938. She was memorable, though uncredited as the "young and healthy" blonde in "42nd Street" 1933. Among other low budget features, she starred in "Silks and Saddles" 1936. Her last movie was "The Marines Come Thru" filmed in 1938 and released again in 1942 as "Fight On, Marines!". She also appeared on Broadway in the Cole Porter musical "You Never Know" 1938. In 1939 she toured with Rita Rio and her "All Girl Orchestra" to help raise money for charity. Toby Wing retired from films aged 23 after her marriage to aviation pioneer, Henry Tyndall "Dick" Merrill (1899-1982) in 1938. The couple had two sons, Henry Tyndall Merrill Jr. (1939-1940) and Richard Wing Merrill (1940-1982). She was an ardent member of the church, had a second successful career in real estate and died on 23 March 2001 in Mathews, Virginia aged 85. Toby Wing has a star recognising her contribution to the Motion Pictures Industry on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame" at 6561 Hollywood Boulevard. additional information - Her father Paul Reuben Wing (1892-1957), an army officer in WWII was captured by the Japanese and survived the "Bataan Death March". Her sister Gertrude Madison "Pat" Wing (1914-2002) was also an actress and chorus girl. Her brother Paul Reuben Wing Jr (1926-1998) was a successful businessman involved in real estate. Her son Richard Wing Merrill (1940-1982) was murdered in the family Miami home in 1982 aged 42. His death was reportedly related to a drug smuggling operation, though the case is still listed as unsolved.
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A photo of Dolores Moran (1926-1982) - American film actress and glamour model was born "Dolores Jean Moran" on 27 January 1926 in Stockton, California. Her parents were Shell Oil manager, James Glenn Moran (1901-1982) and beauty parlour owner, Mary Esther Whitlow (1905-2008). In her teens she won a number of beauty contests including, "Queen of the Butte County Fair" in 1941. Later that same year she was signed up to a seven year contract at Warner Brothers studio by talent scout, Salvino "Solly" Baiano (1898-1992). Dolores Moran appeared in about twenty films from 1940 to 1954. Some of her more notable roles were in; "Yankee Doodle Dandy" 1942, "Old Acquaintance" 1943, "To Have and Have Not" 1944, "The Horn Blows at Midnight" 1945, "The Man I Love" 1947, "Johnny One-Eye" 1950 and "Silver Lode" 1954. She also made four television appearances between 1952 and 1954. Dolores Moran married film producer, Benedict Earl Bogeaus (1904-1968) in 1946, they were divorced in 1966. The couple had one son, Brett Benedict Bogeaus (1948-). Dolores died on 5 February 1982 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California aged 56. additional information: Dolores Moran was a popular American Forces WWII Pin-Up. She made appearances as a tap dancing morale booster at a number army camps though out 1942. She appeared on the covers of "Yank", "The Army Weekly" and "Esquire" among others. Dolores made news in 1968 when she was left a $250,000 inheritance by apricot grower and bachelor, Anthony Ponce (1910-1968). She had only met him once in 1939 when she was working as a car hop at a Sunnyvale, California drive-in. She admitted that "unfortunately for the life of me, I can't remember the man". Then reflecting on his gift to her she said: "Life is truly an extraordinary procession. What a beautiful thing, it's phenomenal. I'm not living in poverty, certainly, but my reaction was one of marvel and awe".
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Dolores Jean Moran
1926 - 1982
A photo of Dolores Moran (1926-1982) - American film actress and glamour model was born "Dolores Jean Moran" on 27 January 1926 in Stockton, California. Her parents were Shell Oil manager, James Glenn Moran (1901-1982) and beauty parlour owner, Mary Esther Whitlow (1905-2008). In her teens she won a number of beauty contests including, "Queen of the Butte County Fair" in 1941. Later that same year she was signed up to a seven year contract at Warner Brothers studio by talent scout, Salvino "Solly" Baiano (1898-1992). Dolores Moran appeared in about twenty films from 1940 to 1954. Some of her more notable roles were in; "Yankee Doodle Dandy" 1942, "Old Acquaintance" 1943, "To Have and Have Not" 1944, "The Horn Blows at Midnight" 1945, "The Man I Love" 1947, "Johnny One-Eye" 1950 and "Silver Lode" 1954. She also made four television appearances between 1952 and 1954. Dolores Moran married film producer, Benedict Earl Bogeaus (1904-1968) in 1946, they were divorced in 1966. The couple had one son, Brett Benedict Bogeaus (1948-). Dolores died on 5 February 1982 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California aged 56. additional information: Dolores Moran was a popular American Forces WWII Pin-Up. She made appearances as a tap dancing morale booster at a number army camps though out 1942. She appeared on the covers of "Yank", "The Army Weekly" and "Esquire" among others. Dolores made news in 1968 when she was left a $250,000 inheritance by apricot grower and bachelor, Anthony Ponce (1910-1968). She had only met him once in 1939 when she was working as a car hop at a Sunnyvale, California drive-in. She admitted that "unfortunately for the life of me, I can't remember the man". Then reflecting on his gift to her she said: "Life is truly an extraordinary procession. What a beautiful thing, it's phenomenal. I'm not living in poverty, certainly, but my reaction was one of marvel and awe".
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Dolores Jean Moran
1926 - 1982
A photo of Ann Skelley
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Ann Skelley
Sep 27, 1907 - Sep 22, 1992
A photo of Corene Mcwilliams
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Corene Mcwilliams
Jun 30, 1916 - April 1986
Harvey, Illinois
A photo of Emma Skelley
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Emma Skelley
Aug 14, 1891 - Apr 16, 1972
Rye, NY
A photo of Celeste Holm
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Celeste Holm
Apr 29, 1917 - Jul 15, 2012
A photo of Estrella Macklin
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Estrella Macklin
1886 - 1940
A photo of Frances Veronical Aldridge Jacks
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Frances Veronical (Aldridge) Jacks
Feb 23, 1883 - Sep 2, 1958
An original portrait of Bernadette and Frances Hanson taken in 1948. Represented by the Edelman Agency for the campaign of "Which Twin has the Toni".
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A photo of a teenage Elinor Miller. Photo taken in the 1920's.
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This photo of an unknown woman at the hairdresser's and getting a mani, shows an ashtray in the lower right. Full service, while smoking!
This photo, taken circa 1942, shows women at the hairdresser's . . . you always spent time under the hairdryer - not like today!
A photo of Farrah Fawcett, actress, showing off her iconic 1970's hairstyle. Everyone tried to copy her hair - no one could.
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Farrah Fawcett
Feb 2, 1947 - Jun 25, 2009
CA
A photo of Audrey Hepburn in the 1950's with her iconic pixie cut, which she popularized.
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Audrey Hepburn
May 4, 1929 - Jan 20, 1993
A photo of Mary Jane (St. Clair) Branic
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Mary Jane (St. Clair) Branic
Jan 28, 1920 - November 1966
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