Thursday, April 2, 2015

~18th Century Hairstyles~

     Hello everyone! I want to thank you all so much for following me. It's Emma and Naomi's recommendations what's done it, I'm sure. I figured with all these lovely followers I'd better write something for them to read, hadn't I?

In case you've not noticed, I'm a bit obsessed with the Georgian/Colonial era. I'm kind of living there in my head. :) The second half of the 18th century is one of my favorite eras of fashion, probably my very favorite at the moment. Particularly the 70s-90s.:) Anyway, I've been reading a bit about these glorious coiffures lately, so here are a few things I've learned.                                                                


Mos people assume when they see pictures of women with such enormous and elaborate 'dos that they are wearing wigs. Not so. Men wore wigs, of course. That was made popular when King Louis XIII of France, who had grown his own hair long, became nearly bald at the age of 23. Poor fellow. But women usually used artificial or cut hair to fill out their own. It was preferred for their hair to remain 'natural'. Natural, indeed! Ha.


Extremely high hairstyles were achieved by using cushions made of fabric or cork. These cushions, or toques, were attached to the top of the head, and then the natural and false hair was styled on top. Hairstyles so elaborate and time-consuming were often kept in for several days. Huge nightcaps were worn to accommodate all the hair and keep it from getting too mussed.

Black, brown, or blond were the preferred colors. Red hair was not fashionable, and might have been died a different color.

In about the 1780s the fashions became more 'natural'. This meant the hair was cut shorter, and curled and frizzy around the head. The idea was to be wider than tall. Women would often have a few longer curls hanging down, like in the picture above.


Some people, (ahem, Marie Antoinette), liked to powder their hair. Usually white, or sometimes other colors. (I hear pink was popular in France). Personally, I prefer no powder. I have always believed that people's natural hair colors are the most flattering. However I am not opposed to younger men wearing white wigs. :)

Well, I hope you've found this information interesting.:) What are some of your favorite eras of hairstyles?  Please comment!


miss elliot said...

Hello there! I found this lovely blog through Naomi, and I'm looking forward to seeing more posts.
This is very interesting! Oh my. Some of these seem a bit ridiculous. Although I'm sure some of our fashions would seem silly to them! :-)
I love the Regency Era, but the 1940's (i.e., Vintage) hairstyles I've seen are adorable and seem more 'do-able' than some of these.
And by the way, I love the general layout of this blog and the header!! It's so elegant.

Sadie said...

Yes, I agree some of these seem a bit ridiculous. Some of them I wouldn't like to wear, but the smaller, slightly simpler ones I would.
I LOVE the 1930s, 40s, and 50s. Those are some of my favorite eras as well. And they are definitely more do-able.

Thank you for commenting, Miss Elliot!

Naomi Bennet said...

I have to admit: I'm not as infatuated with this era as some people (heh: You) are. The hairstyles are, as Miss Elliot said, sometimes a bit ridiculous (especially those TALL ONES. Mah wordy, how they must wobble, those hair-creations!)

BUT the era is so wow and amazing. I LOVE Barbara Spooner's look, and the dresses can be so gorgeous! I love Belle's pink dress!

You informed me of loads of things I never knew --- red wasn't popular? Cushions made of CORK? Ahhh! This is such a different world. I can really see, though, why you love it! It's so fairy-like.

Great post!

~ Naomi

Natalie said...

This was fascinating! I didn't know about some of the things you wrote about, e.g. red hair not being fashionable.
I can't say I'm a BIG fan of the 1700's, but I do have several favorite movies from then, and I love Barbara Spooner's hair, and Marguerite's. :)

Olivia said...

Hi, there! I'm new to your blog, and looking forward to more posts!:D

That's so interesting; for some reason I'd never guessed that about the cushions of cork/fabric:-P

Aw, poor Barbara. But, then again, she wouldn't give a rip whether her hair was fashionable or not, would she?;)

Sadie said...

Actually, I heard that the real Barbara Spooner did not have red hair. Apparently Romola Garai just wanted to. But you are right, she wouldn't have given a rip whether or not her hair was fashionable.:)
Thank you for commenting!

Hamlette said...

Must admit I infinitely prefer the simple bun or topknot of the Victorian era, but some of these more elaborate stylings are fascinating to look at!

Now, crazy-fancy hats? Those I dig! How about you?