Vintage 1050 Curls with Foam Rollers

Generally, a shorter bouffant style was favored by female movie stars, paving the way for the long hair trend of the 1960s. Very short cropped hairstyles were fashionable in the early 1950s.

By mid-decade, hats were worn less frequently, especially as fuller hairstyles like the short, curly “elfin cut” or the “Italian cut” or “poodle cut” and later the bouffant and the beehive became fashionable (sometimes nicknamed B-52s for their similarity to the bulbous noses of the B-52 Stratofortress bomber).

Stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Connie Francis, Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn usually wore their hair short with high volume. In the poodle hairstyle, the hair is permed into tight curls, similar to the poodle’s curly hair (curling the hair involves time and effort).

This style was popularized by Hollywood actresses like Peggy Garner, Lucille Ball, Ann Sothern and Faye Emerson. In the post-war prosperous 1950s, in particular, the bouffant hair style was the most dramatic and considered an ideal style in which aerosol hairspray facilitated keeping large quantities of “backcombed or teased and frozen hair” in place.

This necessitated a regimen of daily hair care to keep the bouffant in place; curlers were worn to bed and frequent visits were made to the hair stylist’s salon.