1960s Headband Hairstyles

Updated July 20, 2017

The 1960s were a popular time for headbands that transcended age, trends and style. Headbands worn in the 1960s were a quick fix for bad hair days, sweaty gym manoeuvres or riding in convertibles with boys. Head bands solved silly hair issues like a front cowlick, lopsided hair bulge or oily hair with no time for washing. Brides and prom queens wore crowning hairbands of sparkling rhinestones, satin bows and shimmery pearls, while kitschy hippie chicks donned the flower-power band or thin leather braid and headed off to a love-in.

Headband Types

Different kinds of headbands predominated 1960s hair fashion. Alternative groups like hippies, flower children and Bohemians liked wide mod, skinny leather or faux braid hairbands. Uniformed schoolgirls preferred an "Alice-in-Wonderland" wide polyester band. Young girls and teens liked the plastic jelly or bead bands with tiny teeth to grip the hair crown. A sophisticate or uptown girl often wrapped her hair in a single-knotted turban for beachwear, gardening or grocery shopping. Headbands for elegant evenings incorporated satin and velvet, tulle flowers, gemstones, seed pearls and tiaras.

Hairband Hair Length and Hair Styles

Hairstyles of the 1960s were often crazy and hair ornaments outlandish. Astronauts landing on the moon influenced a hair-out-of-this-world look, and "Barbarella" star Jane Fonda embraced the common hairband. The hairband's versatility looked chic on a bobbed "Twiggy" haircut, schoolgirl pageboy, towering beehive or wispy, wild backcombing. Hairbands gave an "Alice in Wonderland" look to long, loosely curled hair. Young women with alternative lifestyles used the band to contain wild ringlets or pin-straight long hair. The hair fad was practical, trendy and fashion's simple answer to neat, manageable hair.

Hairband Styles and Fabrics

The 1960s broke all boundaries for conservative 1950s hairband styles and fabrics. If a fashion guru could think it, a fashionista would wear it. Fabrics and origins included polyester, human hair, feathers, elasticated crochet yarn, animal skins and hides, satin ribbons, metal, terrycloth and plastic. Hairband styles included stretchy elastic; double helices; bows clipped to fabric strips; super-slim cords; fat, flowery bandannas; and railroad kerchiefs. Hairbands could be a simple circular strip, tied sash, turban, cowhide lace or even a wearer's own human hair braided and pulled to encircle the crown.

Hairband Celebrities from the 1960s

Television and the movies were all the rage for 1960s screen entertainment. Stars Audrey Hepburn, Marlo Thomas and Goldie Hawn popularised the headband. Ann-Margret in "Bye Bye Birdie" portrayed the look of virginal innocence with her simple white headband. Audrey Hepburn wore a jewelled band in "Breakfast at Tiffany's," and Elizabeth Taylor wore a bushy fox-fur hairband ensemble during a 1960s interview. Mouseketeer Annette Funicello and Dr. Pepper spokeswoman Donna Loren both wore headbands in "Beach Blanket Bingo."

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About the Author

Diane Crispell writes food and culture reviews for several online publications. She wrote a neonate newsletter for Orlando Medical Center and, as a USDA scientific news writer, wrote a "Gainesville Sun" front-page story. Diane later became a medical research writer for Presley Publications, Denver. She holds a Bachelor of Science, honors, in journalism from University of Florida.