We’re heading back in time to the vibrant decade of the 80s, known for its neon lights and monumental hairstyles. Lola Salazar, a seasoned hair stylist, is our guide on this trip down memory lane. Her expertise spans across a range of styles and hair types, making her an authority on 80s styles. Buckle up for a radical journey as we dive into the expressive and spectacular world of 80s hair with Lola’s insights leading the way.
Meet The Expert
Lola is a curly hair specialist with over 10 years of experience.
You can find her at Shampoolio Experience in East Hollywood, CA
All Hair Types Can Rock the 80s Look
Lola first clears up a common myth. “80s hairstyle can be for anyone and all hair types,” she says, but adds that there’s one key factor to think about: height! It’s not a low care style, and it needs work every day.
Face Shape and Length Matter
Lola offers expert advice on how to match 80s hairstyles to different face shapes. Layers can give a round or square face a natural lift. For a long or oval face, she says, “shoulder length or medium length hair works best”. The aim is to keep a balance so that the face doesn’t get lost in the hair.
But don’t think you’re stuck in a box. You should feel free to try any hairstyle that catches your fancy. As Lola asserts, “ANYONE can rock ANYTHING as long as they have enough confidence.”
Styling Tips and Product Recs Explained
When you go for an 80s style, be ready to dedicate some time to it. Lola doesn’t mince her words. She says this style is not for those who want to keep hair care quick and easy. She gives her top tips to add volume to your hair. Use a blow dryer with your head tipped upside down. For an extra lift, tease your hair and go big on hairspray.
She also recommends volume powder. This magic formula will hold your style up all day. But remember, it’s not a wash and go style. You’ll need hairspray and a teasing brush to nail it. With Lola’s expert tips, you’re sure to turn heads with your 80s style!
Photos of the Best 80s Hairstyles
#1: Half-Up Bob Updo with Scrunchie
If you have short hair, finding fun styles can be challenging. Try a half-up bob updo with a velvet scrunch for an exciting twist! Hair ties and other accessories make hair styling fun. A velvet scrunch is not just a hair tie. Evoking the fun 80s vibe, it can uplift your day-to-day look.
#2: Swept Back Wavy Hair
Channel your inner 80s glam goddess with this swept-back wavy hair style. This nostalgic coif is super simple to recreate at home!
#3: Half Up ’80s Beach Waves
If you have these curls naturally, you’re lucky. If not, I suggest using a small barrel curling iron. Create these curls by taking small 1/2 -1 inch sections of your hair. Once all the hair is curled, comb through it with a wide comb to fluff it out. Section out some face-framing pieces and take the top crown section into a mini high ponytail. This hairstyle was very popular in the 80s.
#4: Pouf Hairstyle with Crimped Curls
Try a fun pouf hairstyle with crimped curls for the day if you aim for a big hairstyle. It works great for an 80s-themed party. The small crimped texture adds volume and fullness to the hair, starting right from the base. You can adjust the crimping amount and pouf size to suit your hair volume preference.
#5: Very Long and Straight High Pony
If you desire a long, straight and dramatic high ponytail, you can achieve it by using extensions or hair pieces. Hair pieces have always been crucial in editorial styling, and increasingly women are utilizing them in daily life. They add a dramatic flair with little to no commitment. My best recommendation is to invest in quality human-grade hair. This will provide a seamless transition from your natural hair to the hair piece. You can enhance the blend at the base of the ponytail using pigmented root spray, creating a seamless finish.
#6: Modern Wavy Fawcett Hair
If you want a modern touch to wavy hair like Farrah Fawcett’s, try soft face-framing with curtain bangs. The trend of shag haircuts makes them the most asked-for cut shape. Both soft face-framing and heavy curtain bangs bring back elements from the 70s and 80s. This unique style works for most hair types and looks best when blow-dried with a medium-sized round brush.
#7: Wavy Faux Mullet with Barrettes
If you have wavy hair, consider trying a faux mullet. This haircut can be fun to style with accessories and curling barrels. Mullets are a statement haircut. With a nod to the 80s, a mullet is edgy with lots of character. Remember, embracing your hair’s natural texture is important when you have a mullet haircut. Air drying is highly recommended for this style. I recommend using a sea salt spray for optimum definition and texture.
#8: Curly Mullet with Wispy Bangs
If you have curly hair, try this modern mullet with wispy bangs. This look is also great if you appreciate an ’80s classic. The style works best on fine to medium-textured hair that is shoulder length. Don’t have curly hair? Don’t worry! Perms are making a comeback! If you are considering a perm to achieve this look, don’t forget to ask your hairstylist about hair care and maintenance.
#9: Shaggy Mullet with Messy Layers
If you have wavy hair, this textured shag/mullet can add fun and movement. Ask your stylist to cut your hair towards the face to add layers. Then, raise the top and cut the crown. Style your hair using a mousse to add volume. Finish with a fiber paste for texture and separation.
#10: Wrap-Around Pony on Long Blonde Hair
Ever dreamt of looking like Jeannie from the famous TV show I Dream of Jeannie? First, turn your head upside down, then brush all your hair to the top of your head and secure it with an elastic. Afterward, return your hair to a normal position, right side up. At this point, you have two options to proceed. Pull a few strands loose to achieve a soft, wispy look, or use a working spray to smooth the hair. Pick a strand of hair from the underside of your ponytail when your mane base looks as you desire. Slightly back-brush it for fullness, then wrap this strand around your ponytail’s base. Lastly, fasten it with a bobby pin and apply more working spray for final touch-ups.
#11: Bright Peach Voluminous Bob
Are you a girl who wants to have fun? This fun peachy bob is a nod to early ’80s Cindy Lauper. To achieve this look, ask your stylist for a blunt bob with soft textured layers and side bangs. You will first need to lighten your hair to a pale blonde for color. Then, apply soft shades of yellow, pink, and orange to achieve this bright, peachy tone. Style your hair with a large round brush, lifting it at the root. Discuss budget and maintenance before beginning any major hair change with your stylist.
#12: Pixie Mullet with Curtain Bangs
If you desire a Blondie-inspired look, you or your stylist can achieve it. A super blonde pixie mullet suits fine to medium wavy hair. It works best if the hair isn’t dyed or has only minimal highlights. Lightening all your hair blonde can be costly. It also needs more upkeep, particularly if your natural hair is dark. To achieve this style, the hair is cut with a razor to accomplish a textured look.
#13: Layered Shullet with Spiky Bangs
Do you feel overwhelmed by your long hair yet don’t want to cut it too short? Consider this trendy 80’s-inspired haircut, a blend of the shag and mullet styles, often known as a ‘shullet’. This hairstyle is most suitable for people with medium to rough textured hair that is thick.
#14: Textured Curly Shag with Bangs
Interested in the disco era? This 80s-inspired look brings the past to life. If you have curly hair and love volume, this cut is for you. Find a hair specialist for curly hair. They should understand your curl pattern and guide you with styling to maintain your curls. All the while, you’ll still achieve that voluminous ’80s look!
#15: Side-Parted Golden Brown Wavy Hair
They do say that everything is bigger in Texas! This look is inspired by the ‘Dallas’ TV show, which takes ’80s glam to the next level. It would be best to start by blow-drying your hair with a round brush to achieve this look. Pull up at the base of each hair section to add volume. After drying your hair, apply a thermal protectant and a working spray. Then, use a 1-2 inch barrel curling iron to curl each section horizontally. Clip each curl to the scalp and leave them until the curls are fully cool. When all curls have cooled, remove your pins and brush your hair into waves using a boar bristle or Denman-style brush. Finish styling with a flexible hold hairspray.
#16: Face-Framing Layers with Heavy Bangs
If you’re looking for a style that frames your facial features, try face-framing layers with heavy bangs. This bouncy chop gives major bombshell vibes.
#17: Loose Curls and Textured Fringe
Loose curls and textured fringe were all the rage in the 1980s. The contrast from fringe to ends will also draw attention to your eyes.
#18: White Blonde Curls with Bangs and Bow
Opt for a white-blonde color with curls, bangs, and a bow. A soft ethereal yet bold feminine edge is the essence of the 80s and Madonna. Recreate this decade-inspired look with a one-inch tapered curling wand. Curl throughout and pin up the crown with bobby pins along the side. A big bow to embellish with gives you the new wave-girl vibe.
#19: Side-Swept Curly Hair with Colorful Clips
Side-swept curly hair with colorful clips is a playful and vibrant hairstyle choice. The natural curls cascading to one side create a very romantic look. The colorful clips bring a fun and youthful touch. This combination will be sure to showcase your creativity and unique style.
#20: Blowout Style for One-Side Hair
For a glamorous look, try this blowout style for one-side hair. The deep side part of this look gives ultimate volume and bounce!
#21: Sleek High Ponytail with Waves
The sleek high ponytail with waves is a statement hairstyle. It seamlessly combines sophistication with a touch of glamour. The sleekness of the ponytail creates a polished and refined look. Waves add a hint of softness and femininity. This versatile hairstyle can be dressed up or down for any occasion. To elevate the style further, consider incorporating accessories. Use hairpins or ribbons for a personalized touch.
#22: Soft Tousled Crimped Hair
The soft tousled crimped hair is a cool, retro hairstyle. It combines vintage vibes with a modern twist. The crimped texture adds a unique element to the hair, creating a playful and nostalgic look. The softness of the tousled waves adds a touch of effortless chicness to the overall style.
#23: Vintage Deep Side Part on Copper Hair
The vintage deep side part on copper hair is a sleek and timeless hairstyle. It effortlessly combines classic elegance with a touch of modern allure. The deep side part frames the face beautifully. The copper hue adds richness and warmth to the hair, enhancing the overall vintage appeal. This style can be worn with soft waves or straight for a sleek finish. It allows the hair to exude a sleek and luxurious shine. Embrace the vintage deep side part on copper hair and enjoy a hairstyle that brings volume to your look.
#24: Peach Beehive Hairstyle
If you are looking for an updo, try this beehive hairstyle with a peach hue to it. This look will work with any head shape, and with a strong hairspray, it will stay in place all day and night.
#25: Textured Mohawk Fishtail Braid
A mohawk fishtail braid with lots of texture screams classic 80s punk. If you’re looking for hair trends that are detailed yet funky, this style is for you. This style does require a lot of hair, so be sure to as your stylist if this is achievable for you.