Hairspray Birthday Party Ideas

Updated February 21, 2017

A movie that is set in the 1960s and is centred on dancing, "Hairspray" is an easy theme to incorporate into a party--from the decor to the activities. For music, you can choose from the soundtrack to the original John Waters' directed film, the Broadway cast recording or the updated 2007 film.


Choose an element that relates to the movie.

Hairspray: Print an image of a bottle of hairspray from Clip Art, cut it out and glue it to a piece of card stock. On the back of the card stock, write the details of the party, including the theme of the party.

Movie Reel: Again, from Clip Art, print out a picture of a movie reel. Fold a piece of card stock in half to create a card. Attach the movie reel to the front of the card. On the inside of the card, print: Now featuring, the movie "Hairspray" at (insert name) birthday party.

Don't forget to tell guests whether they should dress up like characters from the movie.


Since dancing was a big element in the movie, a dance floor is a must. Clear out furniture to create a space for dancing. Create a white and black checkered floor, like in the movie, by laying black and white linoleum tiles on a large piece of chip board or thick wood and place it in the dance floor area. Hang disco balls, paper streamers and balloons around the party area. Posters from the movie and pictures of the cast are ideal items to hang on the walls.


Have a dance contest in which guests display their best 1960s dance moves, such as the mashed potato, the twist, the monkey and the pony. The birthday boy or girl can be the judge. Play a game of "Name that Tune," in which a small snippet of a song from the movie, or any song from the 1960s is played and party goers try to guess the name of the song. Test your friends knowledge of the movie with a game of "Hairspray Trivia." Of course, you also could watch either or both versions of the movie.

Food and Drink

Serve a classic all-American menu for this themed party; the story is set in 1960s United States. Soda fountain fare, such as hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, ice cream sundaes, milkshakes and cola in glass bottles, can add to the mood. Or pick up a cue from the movie and serve soul food, such as sweet potatoes, barbecue chicken, chitterlings and collard greens.

Costume and Hair

Bring the party to life by asking guests to dress like their favourite characters from the movie. For the ladies, big hair is essential, which can be achieved with back-coming and lots of hairspray, or by purchasing a wig. To look like Penny Pingleton, wear a green romper dress, a white button-down shirt and white tennis shoes. A gold dress with a red boa would work for Motormouth Maybelle. To dress the part of Link Larkin, wear black trousers, a black button down shirt, a white tie and a suit jacket--if possible, blue and black checkered--and slick your hair back.

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About the Author

Lily Mae began freelance writing in 2008. She is a certified elementary and literacy educator who has been working in education since 2003. Mae is also an avid gardener, decorator and craft maker. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in education and a Master of Science in literacy education from Long Island University.