Short hair styles of the 80s
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If any period deserves the title 'decade of the hair', it is the 80s. There were so many ways it was worn - up, out, to the left and half-off. As the decade progressed, a new trend started - particularly with women. This was the short hair style. So how did this come about?
All throughout recent fashion history, short hair for men has been commonplace. However, as a style for women, it wasn't widely adopted until the very late 80s and early 90s. In this context we are talking about the simple short look - not short spiked hair.
Big hair had been a fashion staple since the 60s. But like many fashion trends, a back-lash started to occur and it is difficult to pinpoint the exact time it occurred. There was a brief period in the early 1980s when several music celebrities adopted the androgynous look - Annie Lennox and Grace Jones are two notable examples (see below). However, short hair was part of a wider style and not its own fashion.
Short hair returns
The short hair style appeared a second time when Madonna went through one of her reinvention phases in 1986. She had dumped the big hair, jewellery, heavy makeup and layered clothing to emerge with a new basic-look. She kept the new cropped hair going for about a year and it was used in clips such as Live to Tell and Pappa Don't Preach. The fahsion didn't take off. Over the following years her short hair was gradually grown out until late 1989, when she had regained full length and classic style for Like A Prayer and Vogue.
The turning point for making short hair widely acceptable and even desirable came in the last few months of 1989. There was one musician who probably the most influence in starting the trend (to be accurate, we are talking no hair). It also helped that this singer was naturally attractive with a powerful voice and her first big hit featured a simple but striking music video. That singer was Sinead O'Connor (jokingly called Skinhead O'Connor, but never to her face) and her version of Prince's Nothing Compares To You was a chart-topper around the world. Unlike Madonna's 1986 effort, Sinead managed to retain her beauty whereas most critics were not so soft on Madonna.
90s short hair
The momentum for short hair fashion was given a major boost by the 1990's movie Ghost - where Demi More was sporting the cropped hair look. Like Sinead, people looked upon her and thought you can look attractive with short hair. As the 90s progressed, hair gradually returned to longer lengths again. This time around it had to be straight with moderate styling and with this the 80s were banished to where they belong - in the past.
Short hair photos Grace Jones, Demi Moore (Ghost), Sinead O'Connor, Annie Lennox, Madonna.