A woman having her hair styled by Frans Van Oers in 1971.
The lovely lady pictured at the top of this post is getting the mother of all holiday hairdos by Dutch stylist Frans Van Oers in 1971. It seems that this kind of holiday hair was a thing in the Netherlands as Van Oers was not the only stylist creating these whimsical types of yuletide hairdos. Another Dutchman, Robert Engelander, was also known for coming up with extravagant holiday-themed hairstyles.
A different kitschy throwback when it comes to decorating your head for the holidays was the invention of the Christmas tree hat. The hats were popularized during the 1950s and 1960s—though you’ve probably seen at least a few festive folks wearing modern adaptations around town during December. However, nothing quite beats the vintage awesomeness of the Christmas tree hats/hair I’ve dug up for you today. Merry Christmas!
A Christmas-themed updo by Dutch stylist Robert Engelander.
There’s an axiom I have about life which states “If it looked good on David Bowie then it’ll look shit on you.”
The obvious example was that daft craze for Bowie pants in the late 1970s early 1980s around Bowie’s Thin White Duke phase. These narrow-waist, wide-thighed yet tightly tapered at the ankle trousers looked the biz on the Main Man but let’s be honest they looked utter shit on everybody else. They were like giant incontinence trousers for men. It was a mere hop and skip to imagine the gallons of urine slopping around inside each pant leg when seen on wannabe cool guys up town on a Saturday night.
Another fine (and let’s be honest probably the best) example was the car crash of a hairstyle known as the Mullet.
Bowie popped up with one in the early 1970s when he was doing Aladdin Sane and singing “Life on Mars.” Bowie looked cool. He looked exotic. He looked taboo. But when the very same hairstyle was sported by various hairy soccer stars and bland TV personalities a decade or so later in the 1980s, it was like inmates from the Bide-a-wee care home for the criminally attired had escaped.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the term “the Mullet was “coined” by the Beastie Boys (really?) in their song “Mullet Head” in 1994. But I’m not sure this is correct as I recall the term being used with abandon during the 1980s in the UK.
The mullet was a strange welding together of two different hairstyles—usually a flat top or feather cut on top with long rat’s tails at the back. It was an aberration, sure, but it is an aberration that still persists to this day like knotweed in gardens. Here for your delectation and education is a small selection of the hairstyle every sensible person should avoid at all cost.
David Bowie—the only person who can sport a mullet and not look stupid.
Y’see what I mean…
English soccer star Chris Waddle seemed to have this hairstyle longer than his playing career.
More of the hairstyle that time forgot, after the jump…
Each day photographer J.D. Okhai Ojeikere went out into the streets and photographed women’s hairstyles with his Brownie D camera. Ojeikere wasn’t just documenting the latest trends in hair fashion—he thought hairstyles were an “art form” that were created by “precise gestures” in the same way an artist sculpts the intricacies of a statue. Ojeikere was also aware these individual hairstyles reflected the major changes in Nigeria’s post-colonial politics and culture, together with the growth of personal freedom and the shift towards personal identity.
Ojeikere took thousands of photographs of women’s hairstyles from 1968 onwards. He captured the different weaves and braids on street corners, offices, bars, and at parties, He took his picture then noted down the name of each design. Ojeikere started his photographic career as a darkroom assistant at the Ministry of Information in 1954. In 1959, he was appointed staff photographer with the Western Nigerian Broadcasting Services. He then joined the Nigerian Arts Council in the 1960s when he began photographing and documenting Nigerian life and culture. His work has been exhibited throughout the world, including the 55th Venice Biennale d’arte in 2013, and his work is still exhibited and sold as prints today. J.D. Okhai Ojeikere died at the age of 83. in 2014.
‘Ojo Npeti’ or ‘Kiko’ (1968).
‘Fro Fro’ (1970).
More of J.D. Okhai Ojeikere’s photographs, after the jump…
Donald Sutherland is a damn fine actor—one of the greatest. He’s also got a damn fine head of hair.
Sutherland and his hair are truly exceptional—above Gielgud, Olivier, Bruce Willis and all those more or less “good” but follicly challenged actors.
You know, it’s hard to think of any other actor who makes his hair work as hard as Sutherland does in every single performance.
Just think back to his neat blonde-haired vampire-killer in Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors or hippie Sgt. Oddball in Kelly’s Heroes and his scary perm in Invasion of the Body Snatchers or that bad Santa look he sported in Hunger Games—Donald Sutherland is a man and a hairstyle with no equal.
Now I’ve been a big fan of Mr. Sutherland since way, way back whenever. But I truly became an admirer of Sutherland and his hair after I watched him at an awards ceremony on TV when I was but a short, back and sides sometime in the 1970s. Sutherland was announcing an award for something or other and when he made his way up to the stage he revealed he was favoring one of the weirdest hairstyles ever. From the back it looked like Sutherland had one of his usual long-haired hippie coiffures. But from the front, his head was shaved back to the bone and almost halfway up his scalp thus creating a bizarre and utterly huge forehead. Sutherland responded to the audience’s shocked gasps by explaining he was about to appear in Fellini’s Casanova and added:
When Fellini says get a haircut, you get a haircut.
Over the years Sutherland has certainly had quite a few weird and wonderful haircuts—each in its own way helping the great and talented actor deliver an unforgettable star performances and many a film-stealing turn in supporting roles. Now in his eighties, I can think of no other actors (save for maybe Eraserhead‘s Jack Nance) whose hair has given as powerful or as iconic a contribution to movie history. If you don’t believe me, well, just take a look at some of these….
Now, I know, I know some of you will say but what about this movie or what about that film…but the truth is Donald Sutherland has given so many great performances, made so many superb films, that there are too many to choose from. So, this is not by any means a complete list but more a tribute to the man and his hair.
It begins likes this: Sutherland in ‘Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors’ (1965) looking like the kind of headshot you might find a stylish barber’s window.
More hairstyles of Donald Sutherland, after the jump…
So opens this brain-melting local Brandon, FL hair salon ad.
Thrash-metal pioneers, Nasty Savage, file out, clown-car style, from a vehicle that is not-quite-a-limo. A slack-jawed hesher in white tie and gloves holds the door for them as the Savages make their grand entrance. Group leader and sometimes semi-professional wrestler, “Nasty” Ronnie Galetti, invites us to “let’s just go find out” what “all of the excitement is about” while making the most awkward one-handed air-guitar maneuver imaginable.
Well folks, the excitement is that all of the Nasty Savages are having their hair done at “Flair Family Hair Care inside the Brandon Mall on Highway 60,” and what follows is a truly astounding montage of shots showcasing the vanguard styles of 1984 Florida. We then hard-cut to the Nasty ones gathered around the barber-chair-seated Ronnie who commands the audience to “get your hair done at Flair.” This endorsement/directive is punctuated with a hypnotic flourish of the hand indicating that the will of the Nasty Ronnie must be obeyed.
One might speculate that a band member was a blood relative of a Flair stylist or that perhaps someone owed someone a favor. It’s difficult to say because it’s unclear whether the salon or the band is benefiting here. It would appear, neither. Nasty Savage, who recorded for heavyweight Metal label Metal Blade Records in the mid 80s, were known for their over-the-top stage shows. “Nasty” Ronnie frequently smashed television sets over his head as a gimmick. Such tactics were undoubtedly damaging to his various hairstyles, and one can assume that frequent repair visits to Flair Family Hair Care were in order. Perhaps lending his professional endorsement to this commercial was a way of taking the treatments out “in trade”?
This is one of those videos that must be viewed more than once to take in the full measure of every stupid thing happening in it. Of particular interest is anything the overly-animated “‘It’s incredible’ Guy,” David Austin, does. If you’re looking for the prototypical “Florida Man,” look no further. Be sure, also, to take in the confusion on the face of the “limo driver” as the members of Nasty Savage emerge. Finally, try not to miss the kid on the right side of the screen in the salon wide-shot getting his hair teased. It doesn’t get much more incredible, mysterious, or bizarre. The excitement at the Brandon Mall is palpable.
Last month it was reported supreme leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Kim Jong-un had (supposedly) suggested that all loyal citizens of North Korea should trim their hair in “accordance with the Socialist lifestyle.” In other words, get that very unflattering haircut the supreme leader (and fashion icon) has himself. Apparently, legions of indoctrinated followers queued to have their follicles trimmed in accordance with their leader’s wishes.
Now, the supreme leader, or at least a spokesperson on behalf of North Korea, has become involved in another fashion war this time over a London hairdresser using a picture of the supreme leader to advertise his services.
Mo Nabbach, who runs M&M Hair Academy in South Ealing, put a poster of Kim Jong-un in his shop window with the headline:
“Bad hair day? 15% off all gent cuts through the month of April.”
Since the poster went up, Mr. Nabbach claims to have been targeted by officials from the North Korean Embassy, based in nearby Gunnery. He claims men from the embassy took pictures of the salon, wrote notes in their books, and then asked for the poster to be taken down, as it was “disrespectful” to their leader.
No, these are not mug shots of the most wanted criminals from the 1970s—though the confusion is quite understandable, considering how these hirsute models could have probably been successfully prosecuted for crimes against good taste—no, these are genuine head shots of once fashionable hairstyles from the 1970s, and I’m sure a few of us can recognize ourselves here… I know I can.
You see, back in the 1970s, unless you opted for a standard short-back-and-sides, your local barber might attempt these cuts on your unsuspecting hair follicles. As you can imagine, these fashion travesties had names like “The Wolfman,” “The Caveman,” “The Psycho,” “The-weird-guy-in-the-kiddie-pool,” “The Gerry Helmet” (for obvious reasons…), “The creep-from-the-accounting-department,” “The Robert Helpmann” (aka “The Child Catcher”), “The Great Masturbator” (evidentallly a Dali-inspired surrealist coif) and, of course, “The Brian Connolly”!
The trauma of having one of these haircuts inflicted on your person could last well into adulthood. Ah, the Seventies—a decade rich in music, film, comedy, and television, but utterly rife with naff fashion.
Donald Sutherland’s big break came in Robert Aldrich’s The Dirty Dozen, when co-star Clint Walker refused to play a scene—as Sutherland explained to the Daily Telegraph:
‘...Clint Walker sticks up his hand and says, ‘Mr Aldrich, as a representative of the Native American people, I don’t think it’s appropriate to do this stupid scene where I have to pretend to be a general.’ Aldrich turns and points to me and says, ‘You — with the big ears. You do it’....It changed my life.’
“Big Ears” was born Donald McNichol Sutherland in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, in July 1935. He moved to England in the late 1950s, where he briefly studied at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, leaving after 9 months to start his professional career as an actor. Sutherland was soon acting in various BBC plays, and guest starring in episodes of such cult TV series as The Saint and The Avengers. Sutherland also co-starred with Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee and Michael Gough in the classic Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors, where he played a newly-wed doctor who suspects his wife is a vampire. After a stint in repertory theater, including 2 disastrous productions, Sutherland’s career seemed stalled. The Dirty Dozen changed that.
During the 1970s, Sutherland made some of the most iconic and seminal films of the decade, including M*A*S*H (a film he originally hated), Kelly’s Heroes (which nearly cost him his life), Klute, Little Murders (a cameo), the unforgettable Don’t Look Now, The Day of the Locust (as the original Homer Simpson), 1900, Casanova, The Eagle Has Landed and National Lampoon’s Animal House.
When asked on the set of Bear Island, in 1979, if he considered himself a star, Sutherland replied that Peter O’Toole is a star, as he has that certain something, while he just makes a lot of movies. Personally, I’d beg to differ. Sutherland gives a brief history of his career, discussing the highlights M*A*S*H, working with Fellini on Casanova and the remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.