37 Iconic ’80s Hairstyles You Need To Try
Over the past few seasons, we’ve been turning our attention more to days gone by for hairstyle inspiration. Yet, while we love the retro looks of past decades, none have captured our hearts quite like ’80s hairstyles.
Donned by the likes of Zendaya, Jennifer Lopez and Chrissy Teigen, modern ’80s hair looks are regularly seen on the red carpets and runways, seriously tempting us to try them out for ourselves.
So if, like us, you’ve been persuaded to try out a 1980s hairstyle, but don’t know where to start, you’re in luck. Read on to discover 37 hairstyles from the ’80s we’re loving right now, from modern mullets to shaggy perms.
The bigger, the better rule certainly applies to ’80s hair. Voluminous locks like Brooke Shield’s are an iconic staple, that still look just as glamorous if you sport the style today. For the ultimate ’80s look, team your vintage ‘do with a power blazer (shoulder pads optional).
Editor’s tip: A key trait of ’80s hairstyles is that they have masses of volume and body! So if you don’t have naturally full locks, you’ll need a little extra help from a body-boosting styling product like the TRESemmé Volume and Lift Mousse
Squeeze a tennis ball-sized amount of mousse into your palm and evenly distribute it through damp hair. Then blowdry and curl your strands to activate the mousse and watch as your ’80s hair comes to life.
Whether you turn to your blowdryer and large barrel brush or a set of heated rollers to create this high-impact look, there’s no denying that the effort will be worth it. Wear this look for a special occasion and you’ll get heads turning.
Travel back to the ’80s with this look. Here, Grace Jones rocks a cropped high top cut, proving that short hair can still stand out. The overall look? Sassy and fierce.
For anyone looking for an iconic hairstyle that is instantly recognisable, turn to Madonna’s punk-esque updo, complete with a black bow. This wasn’t Madonna’s only standout style from the decade, the queen of pop also sported a platinum blonde Marilyn Monroe ‘do.
Demi Moore may be more recognisable with her long straight locks, but with her fluffy curls, bold lips and strong brow game, we think this ’80s style might be one of her best looks ever.
While we might not be able to have Whitney’s singing talents, we can at least attempt to have her tight ’80s curls. Don’t have naturally curly hair? Fear not, even those with straight hair can get in on this look with a modern day perm.
Who can forget Michelle Pfeiffer’s girl boss hair in the ’80s hit movie Scarface? The glossy blonde bob and bangs combo was, and still is, iconic – just ask Bella Hadid. But that’s not the only ’80s hairstyle we adore by Michelle. Wearing her blonde shoulder-length tresses with feathered layers, Michelle adds oomph to her look by sweeping her hair over to a side-parting.
When it comes to 1980s women’s hairstyles, it doesn’t get more timeless than Sade’s signature style. Keeping it oh-so-simple yet chic, Sade would often wear her dark brown tresses in a smooth low ponytail braid.
Yep, we’re calling them Cher Curls because, really, they don’t need an introduction. Forever a style icon, Cher’s tumbling black curls are a look she’s still sporting today – and they look just as incredible, too, might we add.
Crimped Side Ponytail
If you love Gossip Girl and all the preppy hairstyles the characters wore on the show, the ’80s equivalent is the side ponytail.
While this throwback hairstyle was once reserved for cheerleaders, the modern version features playful crimps and is absolutely perfect for a night out.
Hello, spiralled corkscrew curls. This fresh take on the classic ’80s look features loose spiral curls that are full of volume and swept to the side.
Half-Up High Pony
Looking for a modern half-up, half-down ’80s hairstyle? Prepare to fall in love with this playful ponytail, complete with a scrunchie, of course. This easy-peasy style is perfect if you want a quick hair fix. Pair it with some beachy waves for maximum impact.
Lately we’ve seen stars like Kim Kardashian and Kendall Jenner with crimped hairstyles, giving this late ’80s hair look the modern day seal of approval.
You could either use a straightener to create the look or crimp different sections of hair for a dual-texture effect that’s super playful.
Ever wondered why ’80s hairstyles are so voluminous? Well, the answer lies in hot rollers! Heated rollers are renowned for their ability to provide you with big, bouncy and long-lasting curls, which is why they were heavily relied on back in the day.
Want to learn how to use hot rollers? Just follow our nifty hair tutorial, then brush out your beautiful curls to give your dance-floor look a modern edge.
Editor’s tip: No one wants their curls to drop out. So, to ensure they stay put, generously spritz your final look with TRESemmé Freeze Hold Hairspray. With humidity protection and all day hold, this hairspray is a must-have product.
Angular Afro with Undercut
We love this look. This beauty sports a high-angular afro that seamlessly fades into a shaved buzzcut. And we’re sure you’ll agree, it’s the coolest cut around.
Not sure about a mullet hairstyle? One look at this fashionista’s denim-hued choppy mullet and you’ll be sold. With its sophisticated and rounded ‘business’ bangs at the front, along with the choppy layered ‘party’ at the back, this modern-day spin on the vintage style is sexy, stylish and unique.
Muted Neon Hair
Tempted to pair your ’80s hairstyle with a bright new shade? Well, this muted, pinkish-peach is a great ’80s-inspired choice for those who miss the days of neon everything.
For extra style points, pair your new hair hue with undone waves and a bold red lippie.
Natural Disco Curls
Put away the blow dryer, because air drying is where it’s at – especially if you’ve got natural curls. Get ready to rock the dance floor!
’80s Headband Hair
Big and beautiful curls (topped off with a glitzy bow headband, obviously) are back. Embrace this party-perfect look to get into the ’80s groove.
Tip: If you want to take this retro look a step further, try your hand at our bow bun hair tutorial. You’ll totally make Madonna proud.
Introducing this punk rocker hairstyle, which we’re obsessing over right now. The ultimate colourful mohawk to channel the ’80s, it’s fun. adventurous and care-free.
The Faux Curly Mohawk
If you’re not quite ready to rock an ’80s mohawk in a permanent way, we urge you to try this faux mohawk instead.’We say it’s a fun way to embrace the trend without having to commit to the era wholeheartedly.
’80s Curly Perm
’80s hairstyles are unapologetically big and bold – and the perm certainly ticks those boxes. So now’s the time to give your look a refresh with a curly perm. You won’t regret it, we promise.
If you’re a fan of the ’80s aesthetic, these retro curls will be right up your street. Perfect for a night out, this look has all the volume and flair without being OTT. Pair with a bright eyeshadow and you’re good to go.
This cropped look is giving us all the iconic Demi Moore’s hair vibes from Ghost. The bowl cut was one of the hallmarks of the decade and we’re here to confirm it looks just as good today.
Oh-em-gee. This look absolutely slays, don’t you think? The ’80s were all about shaggy perms for women and men and this modern variation is giving us all the Stranger Things vibes.
Curly ’80s Bangs
Do like Rihanna and Zendaya and try curly ’80s bangs. It has that bedhead vibe but also looks effortlessly stylish. In other words, it’s a must-try if you’re looking for a new hairstyle this season.
The ultimate ’80s hair idol? Sarah Jessica Parker, dressed in her ’80s get up in Sex and the City 2.
We love the front puff, created by pushing her voluminous, curly locks forwards with a giant bow. This is a fun look to recreate and definitely one to copy if you’ve got an ’80s party to go to.
Curls with Neon Undercut Braid
Bright, electric fashion defined the ’80s and this certainly extended to hair too. Featuring side-swept, springy curls and a hot pink braided undercut, this look is the perfect nod to the decade of neon.
Big waves might be a trend we’re familiar with now, but they were also a popular look in the ’80s. The bright pink eyeshadow, blusher and glossy lips are worth a shoutout too!
This one’s easy to do. Simply flip your hair over to one side to bring out the retro vibes. Bonus points if you’ve curled your hair with tongs beforehand.
A firm favourite of Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift and Miley Cyrus, the authentic ’80s shag haircut is all about layers and a bold fringe.
You’re not dancefloor-ready without these disco curls. Believe it or not, crimped curls like these have been around since the ’80s, but don’t just reserve them for dressing up in. We love these for your everyday look, too!
Curly Shag Haircut
Ok, this curly shag cut deserves it’s own moment because, well, it looks divine. The ultimate face-framing haircut inspired by the ’80s, this look really makes your coils pop! Want to switch it up? Try out curtain bangs instead of a fringe.
Tight Spiral Curls
Go big or go home! Grow out your curls and wear them long for a major statement. Isn’t this look simply gorgeous?
’80s Rock Perm
If you’re big on volume and want something that’ll stand out from the crowd, this rock-n-roll inspired ‘do might just be for you. The fringe and backcombed crown give this permed style a too-cool-to-care bedhead vibe that we just love.
’80s Head Scarf
Head scarves were one of the most popular hair accessories of choice in the ’80s. Make yours more modern with an on-trend organza scarf like this. Perfection!
Last but not least, your ’80s look isn’t complete without a colouRful, oversized hair bow. Now, you’re good to go.