19th Century Men's Ties and Hairstyles

Written by lauren corona
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19th Century Men's Ties and Hairstyles
The cravat was a common form of 19th century tie. (George Marks/Retrofile/Getty Images)

During the 19th century ties were obligatory for daytime and formal wear for men of the middle and upper classes. There were many types of ties and neckwear, and these, in turn, could be tied in a huge variety of knots. Overall grooming was important to men of the century, as well, so it was essential for a man to have a correct and fashionable hairstyle.


Cravats originated in the 17th century, from a Croatian design, but they were not hugely popular until the start of the 19th century. Cravats were made of heavy cotton or silk and were often worn stiffly starched. Initially, men wore white cravats only, but this changed to encompass a variety of colours as the 1800s went on. In the early 19th century, it was fashionable to wear a cravat wrapped all the way up the neck, but in the middle to late 19th century the style of wearing became more relaxed.

Ascot Ties

Ascot ties were developed in the later part of the 19th century. They were seen as an alternative to the cravat, which was heavy and formal. They were made from a lighter material and were often worn as daytime neckwear. Ascots were often tied in a looser knot than cravats and were fixed in place with a tie pin. It is said that ascot ties got their name from being commonly worn at the Royal Ascot horse races.

Romantic Era Hairstyles

During the first half of the 1800s, hairstyles were influenced by Romanticism. The Romantic era saw art, literature and culture become influenced by the beauty and mystery of the world, as opposed to rational thinking, which was championed during the era of the Enlightenment. Hairstyles reflected this by becoming relaxed and whimsical. Fashionable men's hair tended to be mid-length and wavy.

Victorian Era Hairstyles

From around 1860 onward, men's hairstyles started to become influenced by the industrious and formal world of the Victorian age, which lasted from 1837 to 1901. The popular fashion for men's hair became much shorter than in previous years. Men in the late 19th century kept their hair neat and in place with oils and waxes. Although men's hair was kept short, in was not uncommon for a man to have a long beard and moustache.

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