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The Evolution Of Hair Extensions

Updated: Dec 8, 2022

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History is fascinating, and even hair extensions have a history!

Hair extensions can be dated all the way back to Ancient Egypt - women (who could afford it) would wear thick braids and weaves, with Cleopatra and her voluminous tresses being a key figure in shaping Ancient Egyptian beauty ideals. In these times, full, flowing hair was considered a pillar of femininity and beauty, and it's interesting to see how these ideas are replicated today. A kind of hierarchy was unspoken but so imprinted in Egyptian culture: the bigger the hair, the more wealthy, beautiful, and overall more desirable and respected the woman. This is such an interesting concept, in that perhaps this psychology could be connected to women appearing taller with these hairstyles, and perhaps then more respected.

Continuing onwards, during the Renaissance, height - exaggerating hairstyles were very much in fashion. This became popular with men, too! However, like before, most of these hair pieces (they weren't as sophisticated as modern hair extensions just yet) were only accessible to the very rich - monarchy and other high - standing citizens who would afford them.

During the Victorian era, large, voluminous hair was becoming trendy with the lower classes, too! Hats were popularised and so women of many backgrounds were seen touting huge hairstyles - again, the appearance of more volume and a great amount of hair being bang on trend!

As we look at more modern times, within the last 50 years, big hair has still always been in fashion. Icons such as Aretha Franklin and Brigitte Bardot wore the classic, vast up - dos that defined the 60s: the beehive. As time went on, hair pieces grew more advanced, until eventually, modern hair extensions as we know them today began to grow popular.

However, these weren't the quality extensions we have today. Most extensions available to buy were synthetic, usually made up of horse hair and other non - human materials. This means that the quality of the extensions were poor, and it could be said this is one of the reasons why extensions were treated with suspicion by many in their early stages - they were known to become coarse and matted after only a few washes. This is another reason why it's so important that you are informed about what your extensions are actually made from! 100% human Remy hair extensions which are cuticle correct are the way to go!

During the earlier stages of modern extensions, throughout the early 2000s, bright, neon, and pastel colours were all the rage. They were a staple piece in a lot of celebrity music videos, and were very popular with young people at the time. Figures such as the Kardashians, hugely famous in the 2000s, were noted for their long, thick hair - and this threw modern hair extensions even further into the spotlight.

As the 2000s progressed, a more classic, subtle taste in colour grew in popularity. You could perhaps say we've come full circle to the Ancient Egyptians, as hair extensions today are a great way of increasing the volume and length of your natural hair!


Copyright 2020 | Blessed Hair By Holly | Makeup Artist Studio 3, West Bute Street, Cardiff Bay, CF10 5EN, Wales

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