1960s Hairstyles for Teenagers

Updated April 17, 2017

The 1960s were filled with many distinctive fashions and looks. When looking back at old yearbook photos from the 1960s, it's hard not to notice the teenagers' neat and tidy hairstyles. It was a time when people, including teenagers, generally paid more attention to detail when it came to personal grooming and created fairly time-intensive hair styles. Flips, backcombing, ponytails and pompadours were all common styles that came to define a generation of teens.

Bouffant Hair

In the earlier part of the 1960s, bouffant hair, achieved by the use of rollers, ample backcombing and heavy hairspray application, was popular among teenage girls. The look was favoured by women of prominence such as first lady Jackie Kennedy. Hair was volumized and then sprayed into place to remain tidy. The ends of the hair were commonly turned outward to create a flip. In the mid-60s girls with longer hair would create a bouffant updo called a beehive that was a common style for formal occasions such as prom.

Long Hair

Long hair for girls gained popularity in the mid-60s, and the trend continued to the hippie styles of the late 60s. In the early and middle part of the decade, long hair was kept neat, with teenage girls favouring low ponytails, pig tails or keeping their hair at bay with a headband. As the decade progressed, the look progressed, with straight-cut fringe becoming popular. Many teenage girls took to straightening their own long hair by laying it on an ironing board and ironing it straight with a clothes iron.

Short Hair

Toward the later part of the 1960s, short hair became popular with fashion models and actresses, and teenage girls began to adopt a similar look. Vidal Sassoon pioneered the chin-length bob haircut as well as "The Shape" (a bob with the back part of the hair being shorter than the front), and both of those cuts became common with teenage girls. The British fashion model Twiggy popularised the very short pixie haircut with young adults and teens alike.

Teenage Boys

Teenage boys also sported distinctive hair cuts. Coming out of the 1950s, teenage boys tended to drift toward conservative crew cuts or more rebellious pompadours or duck tails in the early 1960s. In the mid-60s many teenage boys began to grow their hair slightly longer to mimic the haircuts of The Beatles. By the end of the decade, teenage boys were inspired by the hippie movement and some grew their hair as long as their female counterparts.

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About the Author

As a professional journalist since 1998, Lisbeth Booth has worked as a writer and an editor at several magazines. Her career has focused on music and film criticism but she has also written about lifestyle topics such as parenting and home design. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Calgary.