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There were a variety of popular hairstyles for children in the 1950s, especially for girls. On the whole, girls' hair tended to be kept relatively short. The 1950s saw the invention of the term "teenager," and there were different popular hairstyles for this newly labelled group.
Girls' hair in the 1950s was generally kept just below shoulder length or shorter. Girls with hair around shoulder length would often have it plaited into two braids, which could either be left long or looped up in half and secured. Some girls had their hair curled and then either left loose or put up into pigtails. Short pixie style haircuts were also common on little girls of the era.
For young boys in the '50s, styles were less varied, but there were still a few popular hairstyles. One common style featured short back and sides, with a longer top which was often centre-parted. Another was the bowl cut, so named because some mothers would literally cut around a pudding bowl that they had placed on their child's head. Slightly older boys often preferred a shorter style, and would go for an all-over cropped cut or crew cut.
For teenage girls in the 1950s, curly hair was a must. If a girl didn't have natural curls she would use rags, rollers or get a perm to achieve the look. For a more casual effect, a high ponytail was commonly worn. In teenage boys, pompadours, quiffs and duck tails were in fashion, following the teddy boy style. However, for the more conventional teenage boy, crew cuts and flat tops were a popular choice.
During this decade, there were some accessories which commonly completed girls' hairstyles. In younger girls, barrettes were very popular, especially to keep a girl's fringe back from her face. Alice bands and ribbons were often worn. Ribbons would be used to secure braids and pigtails. In teenage girls, a scarf would usually be secured around a high ponytail.
- Fashion-Era: 1950s Teenager Fashion
- "History of the 1950s"; Rennay Craats; 2001
- George Marks/Retrofile/Getty Images